One summer evening in 1808, Sobran Jodeau stumbles through his family’s vineyard in Burgundy, filled with wine and love sorrows. As Sobran sways in a drunken swoon, an angel appears out of nowhere to catch him.Once he gets over his shock, Sobran decides that Xas, the male angel, is his guardian sent to counsel him on everything from marriage to wine production. But Xas turns out to be far more mysterious than angelic. Compelling and erotic, The Vintner’s Luck is a decidedly unorthodox love story, one that presents angels as fierce and beautiful as Milton’s, and a vision of Heaven, Hell, and the vineyards in between that is unforgettable.
It’s sequel, The Angel’s Cut is also now available.
The Vintner’s Luck was published in the US by Farrar, Straus and Giroux and Picador US, and in the UK by Chatto & Windus and Vintage, and in New Zealand by Victoria University Press. It has been published in German, Dutch, Norwegian, Spanish, French, Hebrew, Italian and Korean. It won the Deutz Medal for Fiction at the 1999 Montana NZ Book Awards, where it also received the Readers’ Choice and Booksellers’ Choice awards. It was longlisted for the 1999 Orange Prize for fiction (UK) and it won the 2001 Tasmania Pacific Region Prize.
Praise for The Vintner’s Luck
‘This is a gorgeous novel: as fine, rich, satiny and unpredictable as the vintages it describes… From our unquenched thirst to wrestle accommodation between the human and the divine is born this textured, beautifully written exploration of the inexplicable, into which is woven an all-too-human chronicle of burning desire, violence, murderousness, bitter jealously, curiosity, sexual deviation, shame and a fidelity of a sort. Ambitious and unconventional, The Vintner’s Luck could easily have crashed. Instead, it soars.’ The Times
‘Beautifully written, The Vintner’s Luck possesses a complex boutique of conceits and and ideas but it is the simplicity of Elizabeth Knox’s writing that in the end draws out the savour of human experience and compassion.’
James Urquhart, The Independent on Sunday
‘Daringly exploring the spiritual worth of sensual pleasure, New Zealand writer Knox’s imaginative, imagistic tale soars.’ Entertainment Weekly