Corbeyran / Espé
Now just what exactly is a “book”? A few hundred pages of paper glued together between two covers, right?
A story that someone has put together.
Well, I would be hard pressed to get through this 100 book project if I didn’t include a few detours off the printed highway.
Voila the BD! France has an enormously productive and successful graphic novel industry, they are everywhere and everybody buys them; young and old, “intello” or laborer there is a sub genre for all interests. Cool. Why not?
A common point is, of course, the artwork. Generally speaking these works are the collaborative effort of writer and artist. While the story line is as important as in any novel, what gets the book to the check out line is the drawing. (OK, sometimes it’s the gratuitous sex scenes but they are not in every book!)
I spent several years working in the wine industry myself, starting at my mother’s French restaurant all those years ago in Maryland then moved on to retail and distribution/import sales. So flipping through the pages of this book was like going on a wine buying trip exploring the vineyards around Bordeaux! Each little anecdote in the story was an “ah-ha” moment; memories flooding back through my mind of visiting estates, talking to winemakers and kicking the dirt in the fields so to speak.
The plot is simple enough, an old cantankerous wine maker dies, his children fight over the estate, the heroine is his young estranged daughter who has spent her adult life in the business world in NYC and brings her pragmatic “yes we can” attitude to the rescue. There are several volumes to the series and this is just the first, so I imagine there will be a love interest and a betrayal at some point followed by redemption and the saving of the old man’s reputation by winning the coveted gold medal at the annual wine festival. In any case it is a beautiful vignette into the life of a slightly idealized wine maker that offers readers a bouquet of intrigue, seduction and hope. Pop a cork and sip a glass of red wine as you read through this one!