Vineyard manager Reese Clark is determined to bring her family’s Oregon winery into the big leagues, and she knows building a new tasting room and event pavilion is her ticket there. Having her ex-husband’s best friend—and her secret college crush—turn up to head the construction project, however, doesn’t pair well with her plans. Between her nauseating lovebird parents; her motorcycle-riding, pot-growing grandfather; and her pet alpaca, fond of head-butting groins, Reese has more than enough chaotic characters in her life.
Back in college, Clay Henderson was more likely to be sprawled over a bar than building one. But even if the new clean-living Clay has matured as deliciously as an oak-aged chardonnay, he’s still off-limits. As Reese’s well-laid plans for the winery crumble like bad cork, Clay the newly sober gentleman is sweet enough to rescue Reese from a wardrobe malfunction and still spicy enough to play “I Never” with her. Can he overcome his past rep to offer her a love too heady to ignore?
I am really happy to have discovered this writer. I have several books of Fenske I have bought but have not read. After I read Let It Breathe, I tore through those.
The writing is riddle with the little facts and details that are catnip for me. I get to learn all about winemaking and the heroine does wildlife rescue so there is that fun as well.
The heroine is well drawn as someone who is stuck and the hero’s journey to become his sober best self is great. He has loved her forever but has amends to make.
Their romance is one to root for.
There is a cast of secondary characters whom I like and some crazy goings on which I liked less. The mix of humor and ache in the book is well done.
I really just wanted more couple time without the mayhem and also I didn’t like her ex husband (who she is still friends and co workers with and who is also the hero’s college best friend) in terms of I thought he should have been really called on his uh stuff. He does not have a smooth path in the end but the book would have been more emotionially fulfilling if the hero and the heroine separately would have had it out with him. Also, the heroine’s journey gets a bit repetitive and I think she could have grown more and in varied ways.
But it was a good book that gave me a new writer to read. Yea!