A Veil of Vines

by Tillie Cole
Published November 27th 2016
Contemporary Romance
4 Stars

Tillie Cole has been a favorite of mine when I want a book that’s out of my comfort zone. She writes about things that are completely foreign to me. We don’t have the MC’s she talks of in some of her books and so it has been a nice way to create a picture about that world from her words. When I saw she had a new book, I dropped everything I was reading and picked it up. I always finish her books in a span of two days. What drew me in with this one was her author’s note. I am curious in nature about everything historical, so I had to read it.

In modern Italy no titles exist, yet this centuries-rich ancestry has not been lost. There are still princes and princesses; there are still dukes and duchesses. Just as it has always been, they look to their own.
Marriages are brokered and arranged to ensure the fortunes of the elite families remain intact and prestige is added to their reputations. Their world is exclusive, tight-knit; to those born to this life such matters are the most important of all.
This is a story about what happens when this network of power and wealth is challenged.
This is a story about what happens when the heart trumps tradition.
This is a story about what happens when two souls merge — two should that should never have even met.

This is a story set around the royal family in modern day Italy. It explores the way the elite have maintained what was abolished decades ago and how they still get respected among the people. What she brings out in this setting is the way they would do anything to maintain that power and wealth and so arranged marriages are not a thing of the past among them.

“Arranged marriages sounded positively medieval, even barbaric. For a blue blood it was simply part of life. Marriages have always been based on social bonds and securing family ties in Europe, since the beginning of time. Nothing has changed.”

Caresa Acardi, raised in New York City, is headed to Italy to marry Prince Zeno heir to the throne. She agrees knowing how important it is to her family that the marriage succeeds. The family wine business depends on it and she is willing to do anything to ensure it happens. Prince Zeno, a known playboy in the Italian circles feels the same way. They do not pretend that their relationship is anything more than it is, a business deal. What she did not expect is to meet the reclusive winemaker Achille Marchesi. He is the reason behind the success of the vineyard and she becomes conflicted.

“I found you, my missing part, here amongst the vines, and nothing you say will ever change that fact.”

A Veil of Veins just didn’t draw me in the usual way her other books do. I am not saying it was bad, it was just not what I expected. That’s on me. The writing was amazing as always and the storyline was nice but I felt it could have been made better somehow. I was not into that dramatic ending. It felt too much when not that much was needed. But the book works if you are in search of something quick and sweet with a fairytale feel to it.

“We were from two completely different worlds. We weren’t written in the stars.”

And take it from me, you will love Achille! He was the best thing in that book. He reminded me of Archer Hale in Archer’s Voice by Mia Sheridan.

“Cinderella could keep the jewels, the carriage, and the prince. I wanted the vineyard, the faded jeans and the golden touch of a beautiful winemaker.”

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