Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Review: The Beekepers Ball by Susan Wiggs

Hardcover, 368 pages
Expected publication: June 24th 2014 by Harlequin MIRA (first published January 1st 2014)

ISBN: 0778314480 (ISBN13: 9780778314486)                
edition language: English
From Goodreads:

Isabel Johansen, a celebrated chef who grew up in the sleepy Sonoma town of Archangel, is transforming her childhood home into a destination cooking school—a unique place for other dreamers to come and learn the culinary arts. Bella Vista's rambling mission-style hacienda, with its working apple orchards, bountiful gardens and beehives, is the idyllic venue for Isabel's project…and the perfect place for her to forget the past.

But Isabel's carefully ordered plans begin to go awry when swaggering, war-torn journalist Cormac O'Neill arrives to dig up old history. He's always been better at exposing the lives of others than showing his own closely-guarded heart, but the pleasures of small-town life and the searing swensuality of Isabel's kitchen coax him into revealing a few truths of his own.

The dreamy sweetness of summer is the perfect time of year for a grand family wedding and the enchanting Beekeeper's Ball, bringing emotions to a head in a story where the past and present collide to create an unexpected new future.

My  thoughts: In The Apple Orchard, first book in the Bella Vista Chronicles series, we are introduced to Isabel, her half-sister Tess and her grandfather Magnus, owner of Bella Vista. What a complicated history this family shares. I really enjoyed getting to know them.

Wiggs continues their story in The Beekeeper's Ball while filling in a lot of Magnus's back story, how he came to the United States from Denmark right after WWII and started the orchard in the little town of Archangel. I Love the dual storyline format: present day California and Denmark in the early 1940's. The present day story is a lot about Isabel,  her acceptance of possible romance in her life and her desire to make Bella Vista a destination cooking school.

With lush descriptions and sense of place, rich characterizations and a plot that just won't quit,I  loved it, loved it, loved it!

Oh, yeah, about the twist at the end? That promises to be most intriguing making me very impatient for the next in the series. 5*****

 Susan Wiggs can be found on her Goodreads page and on her Facebook page and her web page.

Disclosure: A review copy of the book was provided by Harlequin MIRA/Netgalley  in exchange for my honest opinion.


  1. I liked it too. That twist: WHAT?!!

  2. I've only read a couple of Wiggs' books but I thought they were both terrific. I've got to get my hands on this book!

  3. I haven't read any of the author's books, but it looks like I definitely need to.

    The BeeKeeper's Ball sounds so good.

    THANKS for sharing.


    1. Kathy, Elizabeth, I would recommend you read The Apple Orchard first.

  4. I havent read this book yet, but it sounds interesting!

  5. Oh, I am so intrigued by this twist! Can't wait to read the book.

  6. I've added both books to my list. Happy First Day of Summer!


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