I just finished a great book called The Soldier’s Wife by Margaret Leroy. I saw it at the bookstore a few months ago but I didn’t buy it. I wasn’t sure if it sounded as good as the two books I already had in my hand so I planned to pick it up at the library instead. Unfortunately, it was on a really long hold list so I forgot all about it for a few months. Last week I got an email telling me it was ready for me.

It is an historical fiction book set in the early 1940’s. Vivienne lives on the small island of Guernsey, between England and France. Her husband, Eugene, has already left to fight in Europe. Vivienne lives with her two daughters, Blanche and Millie and her mother-in-law, Evelyn. Evelyn has dementia and is very confused by the changes in their life. As the war goes on, Vivienne must face the German Occupation, food rations and curfews in addition to the struggles of everyday life. Her moral beliefs are tested and her choices change the course of her life.

What goes better with a good book than a glass of wine? My husband and I were supposed to go to our wine tasting group a few weeks ago, but because I wasn’t feeling well, we stayed home. The tasting was for Zinfandels; normally not my cup of tea. However, the wine we chose was from my favorite California region, the Russian River Valley – Pellegrini Zinfandel Eight Cousins Russian River 2008. It was a very floral wine with scents of blackberry and spice. I was expecting heavy tannins on the finish, but it was a really smooth texture. I sipped my wine with cheese and crackers while I read my book, but it would have gone better with a hardy meal.

I recommend picking them both up and taking some “me time” during the busy holiday season!

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