Grand Crew by Australian author Tom Crago is a very adventurous novel, indulging in the love
of wine, and travelling to beautiful places.
Casual musician Jude mid-thirties living in Melbourne had always struggled with owning the
right man-bag. His frustration led him to the point of designing his own, with the help of his
friend Bethany sewing a prototype. He had twenty made and within six weeks had sold twelve
in a store on Little Bourke Street.
Jude had no means of manufacturing large quantities, a brand name, or enough money in the
bank. When Terry Lee, Director of Neufco Proprietary Limited emailed Jude after seeing his
bag to discuss owning the rights to manufacturing it a business lunch was set up.
Jude asked his good friend Rob, a lawyer to assist with the business dealings. Two hours later Jude is a millionaire signing over the rights with conditions.
With a love of wine and restaurants, Jude follows his passion and ventures to Paris. Whilst there
he is given the opportunity to open a Melbourne outpost and create a well-rounded wine list to reflect the food, ambiance, and personality of the bistro.
Grand Crew tells a tale about dedication. The main character committed himself to goals and
excelled, which is an admirable trait. Tom Crago did an excellent job developing Jude and
displaying his inner strength, boldness, and weaknesses. He is a great character who you
sometimes dislike and sometimes root for.
The dialogue flowed wonderfully and with great care in how it reflected on each character and
the book as a whole. I like the balanced approach because the characters seemed very real,
each giving themselves to the story and the roles they played in Jude’s life. I also enjoyed the
emphasis the author placed on the romance portion of the novel and Jude’s feelings towards his
The book is unique and original with footnotes to help readers connect with the contents. The book can also be considered a valuable source of information with a list of wines included for anyone wanting to learn a little more about the hobby of wine collecting or for drinking.
I enjoyed the book in parts but did lose interest with all the wine talk. I don’t like or drink wine hence this book was not for me. If the reader isn’t interested in delving that deeply into the names of wines and notes, those parts can be easily skimmed to get to the juicy bits.
I am positively sure a wine geek will love Grand Crew and most likely recognise large chunks of themself in the author’s narrative as they are drinking a fine wine!
Thank you, Beauty and Lace and Hardie Grant Media for the opportunity to read and review.
Copy courtesy of publisher: Hardie Grant Media
A selection of our Beauty and Lace Club Members are reading Grand Crew by Tom Crago. You can read their comments below, or add your own review.
My love of books started at a very young age. My mum has always been a reader and encouraged me to read, buying me endless book from classic fairy tales advancing to the world of Enid Blyton, CS Lewis, Louisa May Alcott, Kathryn Kenny, Carolyn Keene, Francine Pascal. In my adult years the list of authors is endless and every room in my house is filled with books.
One of my favourite novels is Narnia which has always has a special place in my heart. I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes in 1978 and when I was given this book to read it let me escape to another world where I felt like I was in the book with all the characters, it wasfun and exciting to escape from reality and eased the ups and downs of the disease at such a young age.
In books nothing is impossible and there is endless potential and hundreds of places to explore or being taken to places that are only made up from the authors’ great minds, the past and future to navigate, characters lives you step into taking you on an emotional rollercoaster ride or being scared out of your wits. I can experience things that I can’t in real life because they’re not possible or real. It challenges my perspective and mindset expanding my worldview.
I find joy, comfort and peace with books, many people may not get it, but I know bookworms like me truly understand. Reading makes my heart happy.