Book Review: The Apple Orchard by Susan Wiggs

The Apple Orchard by Susan Wiggs

The Apple Orchard: What it is about

From the publishers: “Tess Delaney makes a living restoring stolen treasures to their rightful owners. People like Annelise Winther, who refuses to sell her long-gone mother’s beloved necklace—despite Tess’s advice. To Annelise, the jewel’s value is in its memories.

But Tess’s own history is filled with gaps: a father she never met, a mother who spent more time traveling than with her daughter. So Tess is shocked when she discovers the grandfather she never knew is in a coma. And that she has been named in his will to inherit half of Bella Vista, a hundred-acre apple orchard in the magical Sonoma town called Archangel.

The rest is willed to Isabel Johansen. A half sister she’s never heard of.

Against the rich landscape of Bella Vista, Tess begins to discover a world filled with the simple pleasures of food and family, of the warm earth beneath her bare feet. A world where family comes first and the roots of history run deep. A place where falling in love is not only possible, but inevitable.

And in a season filled with new experiences, Tess begins to see the truth in something Annelise once told her: if you don’t believe memories are worth more than money, then perhaps you’ve not made the right kind of memories.

The Apple Orchard: What I thought

Tess, a woman without a family, discovers that she has more family than she thought. And before she knows it, she starts to care about them. And about the boy-next-door, who happens to be very handsome.

This was a nice story in which Tess’ new world with her new family and their apple orchard connects up with her old world and her work at the auction house. Why the love interest had to be so terribly handsome, I really don’t know, though. A nice-looking guy with a twinkle in his eye would be just as good, if you ask me. Anyway, other than that this was fun to read.

The story had a few plot twists and I never was sure where the story would go next, which I liked. The story wasn’t so much a romance story as a family story. Parts of the book took part in the past, in war-torn Denmark. This was very believable and gave the book a more serious atmosphere. It was interesting to see how this connected up with the modern time.

I loved all the cooking that was being done, and each chapter begins with one or two recipes. This is the first book in a series, but it was definitely also a stand-alone book.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Number of pages: 434

First published: 2013

I got this: for review from Harlquin MIRA via Netgalley (ebook)

Genre: contemporary fiction, romance


About Leeswammes
I'm owner and editor at In my free time, I read and review books on my two blogs, Leeswammes' Blog and De Boekblogger.

7 Responses to Book Review: The Apple Orchard by Susan Wiggs

  1. Book Blather says:

    Did you try any of the recipes? 🙂

    • Leeswammes says:

      No, I didn’t, Book Blather. I read the book on the e-reader and that makes it harder to browse through to select a recipe that I might make. But there were some that I might try.

  2. Laurie C says:

    Well, if terribly handsome is an option, why not take it? 😉 I haven’t read any books by Susan Wiggs yet, but this one sounds like a good one to try.

  3. Charlie says:

    The sound of this, living somewhere new, growing your own food sounds a bit like The Tapestry of Love which I read a few years ago. That wasn’t the best book but it was relaxing and I can’t help but think I’d like this too. From what you’ve said I think I can see why you said the guy didn’t need to be so handsome, the inclusion sounds a bit glamorous compared to relative quiet of the premise.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Charlie, that is a good explanation – the glamorous guy didn’t fit the story really. In any case I object to the idea that women fall in love with handsome guys just for the way they look. 🙂

  4. Pingback: Read: Family Tree by Susan Wiggs | Leeswammes' Blog

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