When aspiring actress/waitress Nikki Sands waits on a handsome man and his rude date, she unexpectedly piques his interest by her knowledge of wines. He pursues her after his dinner to offer her a job at his Napa winery.
Because she is intrigued, she accepts the chance to at least visit the winery and think about the proposition.
But almost immediately upon her arrival, Nikki stumbles upon a dead body behind the guest cottage where she is staying, and now she is thrust into the midst of the investigation.
Considering herself something of a Nancy Drew kind of girl, Nikki starts following clues that lead in a completely different direction from where the police detectives are going. Because she trusts her instincts–her aunt was a police detective and taught her a thing or two–she keeps checking things out.
What will Nikki discover about the winery belonging to Derek Malveaux and his “loony” family members? Will her gut feeling about stepmother Patrice and Derek’s ex-wife Meredith lead in the right direction? And what, if anything, does Derek’s half-brother Simon have to do with the shenanigans unfolding over the subsequent days?
I enjoyed the gutsy Nikki, whose persistence definitely paid off, and the setting of Napa Valley was very appealing. I could almost taste the wines, too, as the characters sampled various choices.
The pace was lively, the characters were intriguing, and after several of the chapters, the author offered recipes for the menu items. Murder Uncorked (Wine Lover’s Mystery)was a fun read for which I’m awarding four stars.