The House of Mondavi

  • by Julia Flynn Siler
  • Narrated by Alan Sklar
  • 17 hrs and 13 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Set in California's lush Napa Valley and spanning four generations of a talented and visionary family, The House of Mondavi is a tale of genius, sibling rivalry, and betrayal. From 1906, when Italian immigrant Cesare Mondavi passed through Ellis Island, to the Robert Mondavi Corporation's 21st-century battle over a billion-dollar fortune, award-winning journalist Julia Flynn Siler brings to life both the place and the people in this riveting family drama. The blood feuds are as spectacular as the business triumphs. Cesare's sons, Robert and Peter, literally came to blows in the 1960s during a dispute touched off by the purchase of a mink coat, resulting in Robert's exile from the family - and his subsequent founding of a winery that would set off a revolution in American winemaking. Robert's sons, Michael and Timothy, as passionate in their own ways as their visionary father, waged battles with each other for control of the company before Michael's expansive ambitions ultimately led to a board coup and the sale of the business to an international conglomerate. A meticulously reported narrative based on thousands of hours of interviews, The House of Mondavi is bound to become a classic.


What the Critics Say

"The House of Mondavi's cast rivals that of the 1980s wine-country melodrama Falcon Crest, with episodes of sex, violence, greed, envy, nepotism, and betrayal...[and] a King Lear-like storyline." (Wine Spectator Online)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

The House of Mandavi

This is a great book for anyone interested in the evolution of the Napa Wine Industry. Interwoven is the high and complex price paid by highly motivated family members driven by some times mutually exclusive goals. It is a fasinating story written in a very entertaining manner. It is also very well read. One of my best non-fiction selections.
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- Gerald

Could have been shorter

Although a fascinating story, the author tended to include too much detail (do I need to know what color the sleeves of Michael Mondavi's bride's dress were, really?), which tended to slow the story down. I think if I were reading it, rather than a captive audience during my commute, I might have finished a lot sooner with skimming. I also found the story skipped around a lot: even though the chapters were titled by date ranges, they often included lengthy material from other decades, both before and after. It made it quite confusing to follow.

On a totally un-related note: the actor who *read* this book is fabulous. He could make the User Guide for a Coffee Pot sound enthralling.
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- Victoria B. Mitchell

Book Details

  • Release Date: 07-12-2007
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio