Gatekeepers of the Grapevine by Jane Paterson

Gatekeepers of the Grapevine by Jane Paterson

‘Money might not buy happiness but it certainly could provide privacy and protection.’

This novel is set in Vintner’s Estate, a gated community in Cape Town, South Africa and revolves around three women.  Two of the women, Elizabeth and Carolyn, live on Vintner’s Estate while Sarah, Elizabeth’s sister, lives outside the estate.

Chapter One provides just enough information for the reader to learn that a woman named Elizabeth is in trouble.  But Chapter Two takes us back a year, to an Elizabeth clearly in charge of her life and surroundings.   So, what is Elizabeth’s story? What has happened? In the next two chapters we meet Sarah and then Carolyn.

Three very different women.

Elizabeth is obsessed with position and status, Carolyn has a secret in her past, and Sarah wants to be free to live her life on her own terms.  Elizabeth is the self-styled queen of Vintner’s Estate, only happy when she is in control and the centre of attention.  But Elizabeth is about to find out that her world isn’t as perfect as she thinks.  Sarah will find her own niche in the community, and Carolyn will learn who her friends really are.

I mostly enjoyed this novel.  Ms Paterson has delivered three quite different characters to like, love or loathe.  I kept reading, hoping that Elizabeth would get her comeuppance, Sarah would enjoy her success, and Carolyn would be able to move out from the shadow of her past.  And mostly I was satisfied.  Mostly.  The ending didn’t satisfy me, but I can’t explain why without introducing spoilers and I’m not going to do that.

Note: My thanks to Ms Paterson for providing me with a free electronic copy of her book.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith



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