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This is the first book from an Australian author - Richard Young.  Set in a Hunter Valley winery, it seemed like a good book for me to start recently when I was in the Riverina.

From the Blurb:

The wine-growing district of the Hunter Valley scorches under a harsh summer when Col Ashcombe, world-renowned winemaker, is brutally murdered in his own vineyard.  His son, Tim Ashcombe, an art director living in New York, returns home for the funeral, only to find himself trapped in a world he thought he'd escaped - a world still dominated by the overbearing ego of his murdered father.

Opening Lines:

Just after five o'clock Phil Deakin set about locking up the winery for the night, It was his regular Sunday afternoon task - and he was in his regular Sunday afternoon mood of sullen forbearance.  He loathed the winery on Sundays.  The stillness that shrouded the place always struck him as unnatural - it reminded him of a cemetery after the mourners have gone.  Some of the staff, he knew, embraced the quiet.  It meant they could complete their deskwork without distraction.  But Phil Deakin had come up through production.  He only felt at home with the noise of industry - the regular rattle of the crusher, the clinking lines of bottles as they progressed in their long ceremonial arcs, the thump and hum of pumps.

BOOK DETAILS
BOOK INFORMATION
Author
ISBN
978-1-921240-87-4
Year of Publication
BLURB

The wine-growing district of the Hunter Valley scorches under a harsh summer when Col Ashcombe, world-renowned winemaker, is brutally murdered in his own vineyard. His son, Tim Ashcombe, an art director living in New York, returns home for the funeral, only to find himself trapped in a world he thought he'd escaped - a world still dominated by the overbearing ego of his murdered father.

The blood feud with neighbouring winery owners has escalated and a multinational company is pressuring Tim's family to sell their winery cheaply. Tim sets out to discover why his father changed his will just before his death, but is warned off by the family solicitor.  Anxious to secure his family's financial future and drawn to renew a romance with his childhood sweetheart, Tim searches for some way out of an increasingly intricate tangle of childhood histories, business duplicity and strange liaisons.

The police investigation team has its own problems, baffled by a crime which appears to have no motive.A puzzle of extraordinary complexity begins to unfold, uncovering a devious business conspiracy and unimagined family secrets - secrets of greed, child abuse, murder and revenge.

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Submitted by Karen on Wed, 22/10/2008 - 07:15 pm