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Gerard Bellamont, a famous wine critic with French roots, is found strangled with what appeared to be trellis wire at Allenwood Vineyard, where he was one of the guests to a party the previous night. At this party, Bellamont was heard saying something odd when staring at one of the local wine bottles, “I didn’t like it the first time I laid eyes on it”. Investigator Deville, also originally from France, remembers the victim briefly. The crime scene disturbs him, triggering his memory about his own past. He arrived in the United States in an alcohol induced coma which caused amnesia. Many parts of his past start unveiling itself as he investigates. Many suspects had a reason to kill Bellamont, his wife, his teenage son, the woman he was having an affair with, plus the owners from the winery that he gave merciless reviews. Three wineries are always in the picture: Allenwood Vineyard, Owen’s Winery, and Catalina. Which winery has the most to gain and who was responsible for the death?
A Taste for Death is a mystery set in the Finger Lakes Wine region of Upstate New York. The novel has complex characters with troubled lives. Investigator Deville is a recovering alcoholic who suffers from amnesia. While working on the case, he unravels mysteries of his own past, while trying to repair his current life. Wine critic and writer Gerard Bellamont’s welcome to the Finger Lakes region was far from friendly. Some would even say his murder was of no surprise. The wine owners did not take the critic’s words lightly and his days had been numbered. In addition to writing reviews, there had been more than one lead connecting the victim to the suspects.
Don Stevens lives in the Finger Lakes area and loves local food and wine. He writes and reviews wines for his marketing business and plans on releasing more wine mysteries.