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Extended Audio Sample The Vintage Caper Audiobook, by Peter Mayle Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.27 out of 53.27 out of 53.27 out of 53.27 out of 53.27 out of 5 3.27 (37 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Peter Mayle Narrator: Erik Davies Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Related: The Sam Levitt Series Release Date: October 2009 ISBN: 9780307577122
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Set in Hollywood, Paris, Bordeaux, and Marseille, Peter Mayle’s newest and most delightful novel is filled with culinary delights, sumptuous wines, and colorful characters. It’s also a lot of fun.The story begins high above Los Angeles, at the extravagant home and equally impressive wine cellar of entertainment lawyer Danny Roth. Unfortunately, after inviting the Los Angeles Times to write an extensive profile extolling the liquid treasures of his collection, Roth finds himself the victim of a world-class wine heist.Enter Sam Levitt, former corporate lawyer, cultivated crime expert, and wine connoisseur. Called in by Roth’s insurance company, which is now saddled with a multimillion-dollar claim, Sam follows his leads—to Bordeaux and its magnificent vineyards, and to Provence to meet an eccentric billionaire collector who might possibly have an interest in the stolen wines. Along the way, bien sûr, he is joined by a beautiful and erudite French colleague, and together they navigate many a château, pausing frequently to enjoy the countryside’s abundant pleasures.The unraveling of the ingenious crime is threaded through with Mayle’s seductive rendering of France’s sensory delights—from a fine Lynch-Bages and Léoville Barton to the bouillabaisse of Marseille and the young lamb of Bordeaux. Even the most sophisticated of oenophiles will learn a thing or two from this vintage work by a beloved author. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • Mayle delivers . . . good, clean writing; a sophisticated and mouthwatering use of good and wine as the story’s upholstery; and a quick yet captivating plot, well sprinkled with humor.  This novel is a special invitation for newbies to begin appreciating Mayle’s talent as a writer. Booklist
  • Peter Mayle . . . has been celebrating the pleasures of Provence in seductive prose since the mega-bestselling A Year in Provence . . . This tradition flourishes anew in his latest Provençal picaresque, The Vintage Caper . . . The [novel’s] trail leads—naturellement!—through a succession of excellent repasts and leisurely ambles, which Mayle depicts with painterly ease and signature savoir vivre . . . The wine case has enough twists and turns to propel the plot along, but the star of this caper is the vineyard-veined, lavender-scented, sun-showered, garlic-seasoned setting itself: pure Provence. Don George, National Geographic Traveler (Book of the Month)
  • Meals are lovingly described, scenery comes to life, paragraphs take long floral detours. And everyone is blessed with hypersensitive taste buds . . . By the time Levitt returns to America, readers will have learned much about the history of winemaking, the key wine regions, various auction houses, critics and books—and even how to lift fingerprints from bottles. James Oliver Curry, The New York Times Book Review
  • A lighthearted romp through Bordeaux and Marseille, in which picking the right restaurant, choosing the best dish on the menu and, of course, finding the perfect wine (and female companion) to accompany the feast is every bit as important as catching the thief . . . Bon appétit!
                Bernadette Murphy, Los Angeles Times
  • Wine and food aficionados will find much to savor in The Vintage Caper . . . The Vintage Caper is light, funny, and packed with a menu’s worth of scrumptious descriptions of exceptional dinners and drinks. Carol Memmott, USA Today
     
  • A trip to France for 25 dollars? No, it’s not a super-discount on Air France, it’s a book, another Peter Mayle flight of fancy . . . It’s a smooth ride you’ll enjoy from beginning to end . . . Peter Mayle’s love of France is infectious. John Greenya, The Washington Post
     
  • This novel provides a delightful behind-the-scenes tour of France and its wines, a satisfyingly satirical view of materialistic excesses in America, a mystery that keeps the reader guessing, and a pleasing, robust finish. Scotia W. MacRae, Philadelphia Inquirer
     
  • Relentlessly entertaining . . . Peter Mayle has concocted a shameless guilty-pleasure bonbon in The Vintage Caper. Raleigh News-Observer
  • Mayle’s prose bubbles with the pertness of champagne and teems with sumptuous delights . . . His story has as many unexpected twists as the wending streets of France that are featured throughout the novel, making this one countryside romp that will both thrill and transport oenophiles and armchair travelers alike. Cathy Shouse, Bookpage
  • Mayle uncorks a winning wine caper . . . The pleasures of this very French adventure—and there are many—aren’t in the resolution . . . but in the pleasant stroll through the provinces and in the glasses of wine downed and decadent meals consumed. Publishers Weekly

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Shawn | 2/20/2014

    " A simple tale of a wine heist that was lacking in suspense or intrigue and often boring at times. Somewhat redeemed by it's detailed accounts of Marseille and the exquisite wine and food the characters enjoy on their way to solving the mystery. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Margot | 2/3/2014

    " I love Mayle's books but mystery writing is not his forte. Kept thinking--surely this isn't all, but as the pages went by, realized it was. The romantic aspects were lame as well. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Elizabeth | 1/24/2014

    " A delightfully easy read about wine, CA and France. It's a simple mystery novel, but pleasant and just fun. No brain surgery here, but I would certainly recommend for pleasure reading. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Shannon | 1/19/2014

    " I wish this could do 1/2 stars, because I would give it three and 1/2 stars. It is classic Peter Mayle, easy to read and makes you want to visit France. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Larry | 1/16/2014

    " Typical Mayle. Fast read. Beautiful food descriptions. Unlikely plot. Placed in LA Paris and Marseille. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rachel Rogers | 1/15/2014

    " Another enjoyable read from Peter Mayle. A fun romp through LA, Paris and Provence as our main characters track down wine stolen from a wealthy and obnoxious American collector. The characters in Mayle's fiction all tend to be a bit similar but fun to follow on their adventures. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Teresa | 1/15/2014

    " Priceless wine is stolen in California, and the insurance company hires our hero Sam to find it. With the help of an attractive French woman he travels as far as Marseille to find it. There are descriptions of all the food and wine eaten and drunk along the way. The description of a restaurant in Santa Monica on page sixty three is hilarious. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gillian | 1/10/2014

    " I received this as a Christmas present and as with all Peter Mayle's books, I did not want to put it down once I started reading. I was a novice at wines when I began - and still am - but certainly added vintage names to look out for! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carolyn | 1/9/2014

    " I couldn't read this book without moaning in envy at the wonderful (and beautifully described) French food and drink. It is a romp of a book. It wraps up suddenly and then it is gone, like a bottle of fine wine that is emptied too fast. Along the way it is a wonderful vacation from mundanity. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Patricia | 12/13/2013

    " A light mystery heavy on the food and wine. I enjoyed some of the quirky characters, the mostly French setting and the detailed descriptions of dining in Marseilles. A fun read to distract me from my current heavy reading list. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Belinda | 12/7/2013

    " Let's face it, Peter Mayle's writings are right up my alley for enjoyment, relaxation and getting totally engaged in a book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Clarissa | 11/19/2013

    " this was a fun little adventure "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Larry Cavanagh | 11/19/2013

    " Loved Mayle's descriptions of Provence and especially Cassis. Took me back to some great vacations. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lpage1479 page | 11/5/2013

    " This is light reading but a fun read from the author of the "Provence" books. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bill | 4/2/2013

    " As a person who enjoys wine and visiting wine regions the book was a delight. The story and plot was a little light--I didn't find any of the characters particularly engaging--but I did like the descriptions of wine, food, and locations. It is definitely an escapist read. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Jennifer | 9/29/2012

    " Predictable characters and plot line with a horrible sense of timing and pace. If you can call just dragging along a pace. Even the romance was uninteresting, and I love romance! I loved "A Year in Provence", and I don't think Peter has had a good book since. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Erin | 9/16/2012

    " I bought this book on a whim because I liked the look of the cover and the title seemed fun. More a trip for foodies to fawn over French food and wine instead of a caper. It's was enjoyable though. Make a great beach read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Molly | 8/4/2012

    " Predictable, stereotypical characters -- the plot is somewhat interesting but the only passages I found interesting were the descriptions of food and wine. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Judy | 5/31/2012

    " Not my favorite. Perhaps reading it not listening to the audio book would have been better. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ben | 2/2/2012

    " This book was fine. It was a fairly interesting story and I learned a little bit about wine. It was an easy read that doesn't require much concentration or thought. I was hoping there would be more suspense/mystery of solving the crime... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jeanie | 11/10/2011

    " Held to the light, the pages are the color of an early autumn moon. Not quite robust, the reader knows that there is substance here and a taste that will linger. There's a hint of romance and love gone wrong with a finish that is clever and satisfying. Overall, a nicely constructed plot. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kimberly | 11/6/2011

    " Light and fun read! Perfect sunny escape from a snowy Chicago winter. You must have a glass of wine or champage each time you sit down to enjoy this book!! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Connie Reichley | 8/25/2011

    " I liked the book ok but thought it was a weak mystery. Wine drinkers would probabaly enjoy this book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gretchen Rings | 8/5/2011

    " This was a lot of fun! A great book for mystery lovers, foodies, and Francophiles. Also, at 223 pages, a nice short book for the busy holiday season. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lpage1479 | 5/11/2011

    " This is light reading but a fun read from the author of the "Provence" books. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Monica | 4/29/2011

    " I loved the course in wines... and the descriptive tour of chateau and restaurants through Marseilles and Paris. A good suspense, quick read and enjoyable, but not a keeper :) Great Travel book! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Adrienne | 4/17/2011

    " Not a super good book, but a decent read to get excited for a trip to France. Sort of like Oceans Eleven meets Wine Spectator. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Shawn | 4/12/2011

    " A simple tale of a wine heist that was lacking in suspense or intrigue and often boring at times. Somewhat redeemed by it's detailed accounts of Marseille and the exquisite wine and food the characters enjoy on their way to solving the mystery. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Carolyn | 3/31/2011

    " It's an okay, light read, especially for anyone interested in wine and food, but there is nothing special or exciting about it. A very light, fluff read "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rita Kay | 3/19/2011

    " Not the greatest mystery I have ever read, but Peter Mayle who is known for his non-fiction books on France, notably Provence, has done a creditable job for those of us who love to read books about France and books set in France. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Debbie | 3/18/2011

    " A fun book to read when you need something light. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Gay | 3/17/2011

    " A cute, quick, clever read by Peter Mayle. If you love France, cooking, eating, and fine wine you'll love this book. Entertaining and possibly--educational! Made me want to go out & spend several thousand on French burgundies. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Joann | 3/17/2011

    " A sweet little mystery. Best for beach or airplane reading in my estimation. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Liz | 3/11/2011

    " I've consistently enjoyed Peter Mayle's books since my first encounter with A Year in Provence. This was a fun, light, wine mystery. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Fuschia | 3/7/2011

    " Perfect little weekend read. Vive la France! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Beth | 3/2/2011

    " A light fun read. The characters and story are easliy accessible but its a little "surface" to get to know them very well. A good ariplane/beach/vacation read.
    Same author who wrote "A Year In Provence" and "Toujours Provence". "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Gillian | 2/11/2011

    " I received this as a Christmas present and as with all Peter Mayle's books, I did not want to put it down once I started reading. I was a novice at wines when I began - and still am - but certainly added vintage names to look out for! "

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About the Author
Author Peter Mayle

Peter Mayle is a British author famous for his series of books detailing life in Provence, France. His work has been translated into more than twenty languages and include Toujours Provence, Hotel Pastis, A Dog’s Life, and Chasing Cézanne. A Year in Provence won the British Book Awards “Best Travel Book of the Year.” A recipient of the Legion of Honor from the French government for his cultural contributions, he lives in Provence, France, with his wife.

About the Narrator

Erik Davies is an accomplished audiobook narrator and voice-over actor. His stage credits include G.R. Point, Unpublished Letters, and Flats Fixed. Some of his television and film appearances include ER, Third Watch, and a starring role in the hit indie comedy High Society: A Pot Boiler. His audiobook narration has won three AudioFile Earphones Awards.