Ayra always wanted to be an Art Historian. She saw herself flitting between galleries, talking Michelangelo and Dali with glamorous ease. At twenty–nine, life has decided to make her an underpaid investment banker juggling an eccentric family, a fading career and a long–distance relationship that is becoming a light-year one. On a monsoon day in June, she is suddenly sent packing from Mumbai to Tuscany to buy a vineyard for a star client. What should have been a four day trip turns into a two week treasure hunt that finds her in the middle of midnight wine deals, dodgy vintners, rolling Tuscan hills, a soap opera family and one playboy millionaire who is looking to taste more than just the wine. Towards the end she finds that the road to true happiness is almost as elusive as that perfect glass of Chianti.
Being a wine lover not only helps you gulp down good wine, in my case it helped pick up a good book. A book isn’t much different from good wine, both help in rousing your senses to finer capacities. The blurb attracted me to the mystic land of vineyards, vintners, Chianti and all romanticism that is Italian.
Just like wine lovers swear by Chianti, book lovers swear by good language. Even before the plot and situations, Reshma K Barshikar’s words caught my attention. Free flowing, smooth and rich like a good wine. Scooping up much of her own experiences of touring Italy, Reshma has put up a beautiful backdrop for her protagonist Ayra. I’m glad that she broke away the myth of investment bankers being boring and losers (as portrayed in all Bolly flicks). Ayra is pretty, intelligent, smart and she wanted to be an Art Historian. Now we all know why people crave to do something and end up doing something else instead. Ayra is engaged to her fiancé Kartik. The idiosyncrasies and ambiance of a Chennai household is depicted wonderfully by the author.