This Month's Best Book, Wine and Music

The monthly must-haves.

Read:Thirteen-year-old Frank Drum wakes up in the middle of a hot summer night in New Bremen, Minnesota, to the sound of the telephone ringing. It is 1961. There is no air conditioning in the parsonage provided by the Methodist Church for the Drum family. New Bremen has been rocked by the mysterious death of a mentally disabled boy named Bobby Cole, found on the town’s railroad tracks. That summer and Bobby’s death will haunt Frank for the rest of his life. In Ordinary Grace, William Kent Krueger has written an amazing coming-of-age novel that is also a mystery. A perfect read for August.–—Maureen Millea Smith is a librarian at Edina Library and a Minnesota Book Award-winning novelist.*Available for $17.49 at Barnes & Noble in the Galleria.Drink:As we soak up August’s sunny rays, let a cool, refreshing white wine lift and revitalize the senses. While most people recognize riesling as ‘sweet’, few experience the different styles of the world’s most age-able grape.  From refreshingly dry to honey- sweet, riesling takes on personalities across the globe. While it was born in Germany, our friends Down Under make some of the world’s best riesling. With more than 160 years of winemaking under its belt, Australia’s Eden Valley winery, Pewsey Vale, makes a lovely dry grape. The winery’s Dry Riesling is light and limey, loaded with hints of dried herbs and crushed stone . The wine is tantalizingly bright, and with just the right chill, is sure to cool off your next hot August night.  —–Leslee Miller is a certified sommelier and owner of local wine consulting firm Amusée.*Available at all Edina Liquor locations for about $17.Listen:This month’s pick features a group that has been together for more than two decades. The group is called Fourplay, but don’t get too excited about the name—it’s their incredible contemporary jazz sound that's the real star. The group features these four musicians (hence the moniker): Bob James on keyboards, Harvey Mason on drums, Nathan East on bass and Chuck Loeb on guitar, and as of press time, they hold the record for the most iTunes downloads in this genre for their new disc, “Esprit de Four”. “We are at the top of our game musically, and our friendship has never been stronger,” James says in a recent interview-and it shows! Playing to sell- out crowds, around the world- including the Dakota Jazz Club right here in Minneapolis, their music always leaves you wanting more. Be prepared to go on a musical ride for your ears as you listen. You’ll be glad you did.—–Award-winning vocalist and radio personality Patty Peterson shares her CD pick of the month.* Available online at