Ages ago, a friend from Oregon took us on a wine-tasting trip in Sonoma Valley on our way to San Francisco. Now I wish we had stayed in Oregon and visited Willamette Valley instead, and more precisely, Tangle Valley Vineyard.
Joey – Josephine – Wilder grew up in Tangle Valley, learning everything about wine on her family’s vineyard. When her dad suddenly dies, she finds herself in charge. Fortunately, she can count on her best friend Madison LeGrange’s help. It so happens Madison is a winemaker extraordinaire, and also knows exactly the right person to make the team complete, her ex and great friend Gabriella Russo. Joey’s life seems brighter with them by her side, and will get even better when she meets sexy Becca Crawford. The only problem is, Becca is the general manager of the luxury resort opening down the road from the vineyard, a resort Joey and other residents of Whisper Wall see as a threat to the charm of their little town.
Melissa Brayden is the queen of banter and flirty dialogue. Her characters are relatable, witty and sweet and I just want to be friends with them. I’m actually glad they don’t exist because I’d be torn between wanting them to talk all day and my need for quiet. Or maybe I could let them chat and go enjoy the quiet among the vines, as Joey used to as a child, knowing there’s happy stuff happening just a few feet away.
Another thing Melissa Brayden excels at is groups of friends. I’ve already listed some of the reasons why her characters are so fantastic, and they get even more fantastic when you put them together. They have this awesome energy that only multiplies in an exquisite way. Entangled is book 1 of the Tangle Valley trilogy that centres around Joey, Gabriella and Madison. Gabriella will get her love story in book 2, Two to Tangle, so logically, Madison should get hers in the last book of the series. I’m very much looking forward to these!
I’m not going to argue that this novel is perfect. It’s not, including a few editing glitches. It is, however, perfectly enjoyable. Ms Brayden knows what she’s doing and she does it well. She makes the reader fall in love with the MCs then breaks them up, tearing the reader’s heart in the process, until the characters realise there’s no resisting fate and get back together, leaving the reader delighted and warm again. I sometimes wish she would take a few risks, but I can’t exactly blame her for playing it safe when this is the result. So yes, it’s another 5*.