Thursday, February 25, 2021

Review: The Vineyard at Painted Moon by Susan Mallery (Blog Tour)

About the Book

The Vineyard at Painted Moon
Susan Mallery
On Sale Date: February 9, 2021
9781335912794, 1335912797
$27.99 USD, $34.99 CAD
Fiction / Family Life / Women
400 pages

Book Description:

MacKenzie Dienes's life isn't perfect, but it's as close as she could ever hope to get. Her marriage to Rhys, her best friend's brother, is more friendship than true love. But passion is highly overrated, right? And she loves her job as the winemaker at Bel Apres, her in-laws' vineyard. So what if it's a family business and, even after decades of marriage and incredible professional success, she's still barred from the family business meetings? It's all enough...until one last night spent together leads to an incredibly honest—and painful—conversation. Rhys suggests that they divorce. They haven't had a marriage in a long time and, while he wants her to keep her job at Bel Apres, he doesn't think they should be married any longer. Shocked, MacKenzie reels at the prospect of losing the only family she's ever really known...even though she knows deep in her heart that Rhys is right.

But when MacKenzie discovers she's pregnant, walking away to begin a new life isn't so easy. She never could have anticipated the changes it would bring to the relationships she cherishes most: her relationship with Barbara, her mother-in-law and partner at Bel Apres, Stephanie, her sister-in-law and best friend, and Bel Apres, the company she's worked so hard to put on the map.

MacKenzie has always dreamed of creating a vineyard of her own, a chance to leave a legacy for her unborn child. So when the opportunity arises, she jumps at it and builds the Vineyard at Painted Moon. But following her dreams will come at a high price—one that MacKenzie isn't so sure she's willing to pay…

My Review

Mackenzie Dienes is alone in the world until she meets Rhys Barcellona.  Rhys and Mackenzie marry and she becomes part of the Barcellona family.  The Barcellona’s own a winery, Bel Apres, where Mackenzie works as their expert winemaker.  Everything is perfect.  Her career is successful, she’s part of a large family and she has a beautiful home. Rhys’ mother, Barbara, is as close to Mackenzie as any mother can ever be.  Mackenzie is as happy as can be, until one day Rhys hits her with a bombshell.  After sixteen years of marriage, he has decided the marriage is no longer working for him and he wants a divorce.

Mackenzie is devastated, she is about to lose everything.  Since she will no longer be part of the family, she can continue to work as an employee but that’s all she will ever be.  She wants more out of life than that.  She decides she wants her own vineyard and she takes the steps to get it.  She quickly learns who her true friends are and who are not!

What an emotional story complete with larger-than-life characters.  Susan Mallery has a talent in creating realistic characters readers can care about and putting them in realistic situations.  She does an excellent job of making me either love or hate characters.  When an author grabs a reader’s emotions, that’s good writing.   It’s been years since I’ve read a Susan Mallery book.  This brings back all the memories of why I always enjoyed her writing style.

Basically, this is Mackenzie’s story but there are a couple of other sub-plots that were just as riveting.   It was a fast read for me.  I was totally absorbed in it and wanted to know how it would all turn out.  A very satisfying read.

For reading challenges:
Alphabet Soup Reading Challenge 2021
Literary Escapes Reading Challenge 2021 (Washington)

FTC Disclosure: I voluntarily reviewed a free Advance Reader Copy of this book from NetGalley and the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review.  All opinions expressed are my own.

About the Author

#1 NYT bestselling author Susan Mallery writes heartwarming, humorous novels about the relationships that define our lives―family, friendship, romance. She's known for putting nuanced characters in emotional situations that surprise readers to laughter. Beloved by millions, her books have been translated into 28 languages. Susan lives in Washington with her husband, two cats, and a small poodle with delusions of grandeur. Visit her at

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  1. Yvonne, I'm glad this book was such a hit for you! I really like the title and cover of this book.

  2. I don't think I've ever read a book by Susan Mallery. So glad you loved this book, it sounds delightful.

  3. I've had really good luck with Susan Mallery's stand alone books and this sounds really wonderful.


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