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Villa (Om)
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About the Author

Nora Roberts is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than 200 novels. She is also the author of the bestselling In Death series written under the pen name J. D. Robb. There are more than 500 million copies of her books in print.

Reviews

Something is turning sour in the Giambelli winery when the family matriarch decides to consolidate and reorganize her vast holdings before she dies. Since she "dies" about every six months, her heirs Tyler McMillan, the manager of the vineyards, and Sophia Giambelli, the head of public relations are less than excited when they are required by La Signora to exchange jobs during the course of the merger. Soon, Tyler and Sophia are pressing more than grapes, but as their relationship heats up, other problems surface. An executive is murdered, the Giambelli women are threatened, and poison shows up in the wine. What should be a light, sparkling champagne listening experience turns to vinegar early on. There are so many characters that none is fully developed and the plot never seems to gel. The reason behind the sabotage is pretty laughable. This is the worst Roberts this reviewer can remember. Then there is the narration by Laural Merlington: the continuous faux-Italian (Giam-BAY-lee) is teeth grating. With all the wonderful audiobooks available, libraries would do well to bypass this big-name title and spend their money elsewhere. Barbara Perkins, Irving P.L., TX Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Another novel rich in emotion and rife with conflict from the prolific Roberts (From the Heart; Carolina Moon etc.), this sweeping saga of Northern California wine-making steeps the reader in a heady mix of sex, scandal and the excesses of the supremely wealthy. Sophia Giambelli, sophisticated head of marketing for the family-run Napa Valley winery, is the heiress to the Giambelli empire. She's often compared to her grandmother Tereza, La Signora, who still runs the business. The Giambelli holdings include the 100-year-old Castello di Giambelli in Venice, Italy; Villa Giambelli, operating in the Napa Valley for 64 years; and nearby MacMillan, a 92-year-old firm added to the family holdings when La Signora married Eli MacMillan. The wineries have always operated independently, but now La Signora announces that she wishes to merge all three, occasioning a major restructuring of responsibilities. She orders Sophia to replace Tyler MacMillan, Eli's grandson, and become the wine maker for both families' vineyards. The monosyllabic Tyler will spearhead marketing for the new joint venture. Laying the groundwork for heated fireworks, Sophia and Tyler fight not only each other but also a corporate saboteur who's being fed inside information. Dramatic personal confrontations are exacerbated by La Signora's designation of a new CEO, David Cutter, the only non-Giambelli to hold a position of power. Cutter brings his two teenage children with him to live in the winery guesthouse and immediately falls in love with Sophia's newly divorced mother, Pilar. Other juicy subplots involve manipulative mistresses, dilettante husbands and emotional Italian wives. As usual, Roberts provides plenty of intriguing background information, this time on wine making, and snappy dialogue. (Mar.) Forecast: Villains are easily discerned and susupense is at a minimum in this latest Roberts, but aggressive, savvy female protagonists should prove attractive to readers and enhance word of mouth. Overall, The Villa is vintage Roberts, a grand cru label for the bestseller lists; in expectation, the publisher is planning a first printing of 500,000. Literary Guild main selection; author tour. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

"Juicy...smoothly written."--The New York Times

"A page-turner...intoxicating."--The Fort Worth Star-Telegram "Vintage Roberts."--People "[Roberts]...renders the Napa Valley so clearly, with so much affection, that at times you'd swear The Villa is illustrated...an intelligent, fast-paced story."--The Minneapolis Star Tribune "Rich in emotion and rife with conflict...this sweeping saga of Northern California wine-making steeps the reader in a heady mix of sex, scandal and the excesses of the supremely wealthy."--Publishers Weekly "Take a mesmerizing trip through the vineyards of Napa and Italy as the amazing Nora Roberts delivers yet another exciting, sensuous and fantastic tale of love, murder, revenge and family."--RT Book Reviews

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