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Reviewed by Vincent Dublado for Readers' Favorite
The Keepers by Joy Lynn Goddard with Daniel Pike is a pleasant diversion with a keen sense of poetic justice. Beth Marshall has been helping with her grandfather’s winery business. It’s a backbreaking job for her grandpa, while she helps to oversee the seasonal employees in the winery and vineyard. Aside from keeping the business going, she struggles to deal with her teenage son, Alexandre, for the once sweet and obedient boy he used to be has long since disappeared. Even if their winery business is struggling, it attracts the attention of Charlie Cowden, who offers to buy the property. He plans to dismantle the vineyard to make way for a resort. With the land’s strong sentimental value in mind, Beth declines the offer. A writer trying to recover from a traumatic past, Richard Sweeney moves into one of their guest houses for a six-month stay. Just as she is about to discover the joys of falling in love again, a dead body is found on their property.
Joy Lynn Goddard and Daniel Pike effectively combine romance with the crime genre. The Keepers gives me that dynamic feel between A Walk in the Clouds and Heathers. The plot keeps readers engaged by building up the tension, beginning with the challenges associated with running a vineyard while dealing with a difficult son. Goddard and Pike then proceed to introduce more characters that are bound to intensify the storyline. The prologue introduces us to Richard’s past, a kind of peek into how he will etch a significant mark in Beth’s life. As with all stories that give a sense of poetic justice, this one will not disappoint as it makes us care about the characters and gives us a feel-good sense when everything turns out well in ways that we don’t expect.