The Vineyard at Painted Moon, a review by Tanya

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The Vineyard at Painted Moon
Susan Mallery
Narrator Tanya Eby

11 hours
Published Feb 8, 2021 by Harlequin Audio


Amazon | Goodreads

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I have a few Susan Mallery books on my TBR shelf. Having seen this newly released audio, I thought I’d give it a try. Unfortunately, after 2 hours I returned it to the library as a DNF.

The narration wasn’t my favorite. At times Eby seemed almost robotic in that she would pronounce words or phrases in weird ways. It also seemed like she tried to do different voices for the characters, which I always applaud, except for when the voices of characters change mid-way through their sentences.

As far as the storyline goes, I love the concept of Vineyards in stories. But this book revolved around the characters, mostly the female characters of the family. There seemed to be little respect for any of them, which to me is really weird. Female characters written by a female author – I would expect depth, likability in at least some, strength or personal growth being shown and intelligence being appreciated. Nope, none of that.

These female characters were just horrible. They acted like middle-school children. The matriarch had little disregard for her children, had internal monologues berating one daughter as worthless and calls another daughter 4 instead of her actual name, because she’s the 4th daughter. I never was able to get engaged with the story due to these items.

Then we hit the fat-phobia – stating her disappointment in one female character for adding 5-10 lbs per year and that soon she would so fat. And how disgusting that is. Ew! That’s gross! I couldn’t hit the stop button fast enough on my phone. I was going to try and power through the book to see if I could find anything redeeming in the story but that was a full stop for me. I’m even considering taking my books off the shelf and giving them to Goodwill at this point. I’m giving this story a 1 star but I’d like to give it a 0. Poor taste and poor form!

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