A Veil of Vines by Tillie Cole: Review

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Posted December 2, 2016 in review Tags: ,

A Veil of Vines by Tillie Cole: ReviewA Veil of Vines by Tillie Cole
two-flames

Genres: Contemporary Romance
Source: ARC
Also by this author: Ravage, It Ain't Me Babe
Goodreads

To most people, princes, princesses, counts and dukes are found only in the pages of the most famous of fairytales. Crowns, priceless jewels and gilded thrones belong only in childhood dreams.
But for some, these frivolous fancies are truth.
For some, they are real life.
On Manhattan’s Upper East Side, people have always treated me as someone special. All because of my ancestral name and legacy. All because of a connection I share to our home country’s most important family of all.
I am Caresa Acardi, the Duchessa di Parma. A blue blood of Italy. I was born to marry well. And now the marriage date is set.
I am to marry into House Savona. The family that would have been the royals had Italy not abolished the monarchy in 1946. But to the aristocrats of my home, the abolition means nothing at all.
The Savonas still hold power where it counts most.
In our tight-knit world of money, status and masked balls, they are everything and more.
And I am soon to become one of them.
I am soon to become Prince Zeno Savona’s wife…
… or at least I was, until I met Achille.
And then everything changed.

So, I was recently in the area of Italy that this story is set in. I was so excited to read it and dive back into that world! A Veil of Vines is a unique blend of upper crust aristocracy and real life blue collar life. Caresa is a likable character, which I didn’t fully expect. She is a duchessa, betrothed to a prince. However, there is no monarchy in Italy so the titles are pretty much only meaningful in their aristocratic circles. Honestly, this part of the story seemed a bit ridiculous to me. I would have enjoyed it more if it were at least real titles with real necessity for the arranged marriage. Perhaps if instead of focusing on the fake titles if Cole had focused on the modern need for the joining of the families (business) I would have been more willing to buy it. As written, it had an odd historical romance vibe, but in modern times. It threw me off a bit. I’m still not sure how I feel about it. The way Achille and his family were treated seemed so archaic and continued to give off the historical romance vibe.

Anyway, Caresa is now engaged to marry Zeno and she is sent to live in one of his estates. This estate happens to be the place where her favorite wine is created. Zeno promptly leaves her and heads to Florence (most likely to continue being a man-whore prince). Caresa meets the winemaker who is responsible for her favorite wine and begins to spend time with him. They are both lonely and have so much in common. Achille is very mature for his age, having grown up with his father and been working in the vineyard since he was a boy. He has no friends and now that his father has passed, he is running the winery all alone. He struggles with having Caresa around at first because she is of a higher social class and set to marry Zeno, who owns the land and is, for all intents and purposes, his boss.

I loved Caresa and Achille. But the plot moved super slow in my opinion. Both of them are really passionate about wine so there is a LOT of explanation about grapes and picking and making. While interesting, I felt like it really slowed the story down. However, once the story started to focus more on the characters of Zeno, Achille, and Caresa, it was easy to get sucked in. The depth of the characters Caresa and Achille is incredible. Honestly, I think these might be some of the most well written characters I have read in years. What I think was most interesting is I don’t hate Zeno. You think that he will be the villain of the story but he is not really. Not at all by the end.

Now, you all know I hate love triangles. I will honestly tell you, it isn’t really a love triangle story. I know it appears that way on its face, but that is not the direction the story takes at all!

 

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books where the characters are from two different worlds like Dark Corners by AM Madden, Hearts of Blue by LH Cosway, The Protector by Jodi Ellen Malpas…then you will probably like A Veil of Vines!

A Veil of Vines

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About Tillie Cole

Amazon & USA Today Best Selling Author, Tillie Cole, is a Northern girl through and through. She originates from a place called Teesside on that little but awesomely sunny (okay I exaggerate) Isle called Great Britain. She was brought up surrounded by her English rose mother -- a farmer's daughter, her crazy Scottish father, a savagely sarcastic sister and a multitude of rescue animals and horses.
Being a scary blend of Scottish and English, Tillie embraces both cultures; her English heritage through her love of HP sauce and freshly made Yorkshire Puddings, and her Scottish which is mostly demonstrated by her frighteningly foul-mouthed episodes of pure rage and her much loved dirty jokes.

Having been born and raised as a Teesside Smoggie, Tillie Cole, at age nineteen, moved forty miles north to the 'Toon', Newcastle-Upon-Tyne, where she attended Newcastle University and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts honours degree in Religious Studies. She returned two years later to complete a Post-Graduate Certificate in Teaching High School Social Studies. Tillie, regards Newcastle to be a home from home and enjoyed the Newcastle Geordie way of life for seven 'proper mint' and 'lush' years.

One summers day, after finishing reading her thousandth book on her much loved and treasured Kindle, Tillie Cole turned to her husband and declared, "D'you know, I have a great idea for a story. I could write a book." Several months later, after repeating the same tired line at the close of another completed story, she was scolded by her husband to shut up talking about writing a novel and "just bloody do it!" For the first time in eleven years, Tillie actually took his advice (he is still trying to get over the shock) and immediately set off on a crazy journey, delving deep into her fertile imagination.

Tillie, ever since, has written from the heart. She combines her passion for anything camp and glittery with her love of humour and dark brooding men (most often muscled and tattooed – they’re her weakness!). She also has a serious side (believe it or not!) and loves to immerse herself in the complex study of World Religions, History and Cultural Studies and creates fantasy stories that enable her to thread serious issues and topics into her writing -- yep, there's more to this girl than profanity and sparkles!

After six years of teaching high school Social Studies and following her Professional Rugby Player husband around Europe, they have finally given up their nomadic way of life and settled in Calgary, Alberta where Tillie spends most of her days (and many a late night) lost in a writing euphoria or pursuing a dazzling career as a barrel-racing, tasselled-chap wearing, Stetson-sporting cowgirl... Ye-haw!

Samantha
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3 responses to “A Veil of Vines by Tillie Cole: Review

  1. I thought this book was insta love and could use more story development, I just didn’t buy the romance at all although it was well written. And I totally agree with the title stuff, no actual value to them gave the plot a huge questionmark for me, why the marriage if deep down it doesn’t really affect anything?

  2. This sounds really good, Samantha 🙂 And actually, both Italy and France have abolished the monarchy, but those titles truly still are important in some circles. And I think that those who still hold on to the titles also want to marry well, just in case the monarchy comes back. (Which some are really trying to do in France!)
    I think that the true love part of the story is what I’d enjoy the most though 🙂 Great review!

    • Yes, I think growing up in America has kind of skewed my view on this. We have no concept of monarchy and tend to think the only place it exists anymore in England. America is all “democracy is the BEST; to hell with the rest”. I had no idea anyone in France wanted the monarchy back. I think that is super cool! I need to pay more attention to world news!

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