Wednesday, December 18, 2013

THE ART OF BEING REBEKKAH by Karoline Barrett: Exclusive Excerpt

Joining us on the blog today is the extraordinarily talented author, Karoline Barrett. She's sharing an exclusive excerpt of her novel, THE ART OF BEING REBEKKAH. Be sure to check out all of the tour stops for more exclusives and chances to win.
About The Art of Being Rebekkah
WHEN talented Jewish artist, Rebekkah Gelles finds out her husband has a frightening dark side, she wants out of her marriage; but her life gets complicated when she moves back to her parents’ home in Park Slope, Brooklyn and falls for the charming Italian detective who’s investigating her estranged husband. Convinced he’s all wrong for her—he’s not Jewish for one thing—Rebekkah struggles with love, faith, family, and a surprise pregnancy. 
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Exclusive Excerpt
Nick looked at Rebekkah for a second then returned his eyes to the road.
“I’m not making you break any laws am I?”
“What laws?”
“You’re Jewish. Are you allowed to be alone with a man who isn’t your husband?”
That made Rebekkah smile. “Yes, I’m allowed.”
A few minutes later, Nick parked his car and ushered her inside his brownstone.
She was stunned. This was so much her idea of a perfect home that it took her breath away. She stood in awe in the narrow entrance hallway, where a beautiful navy blue and yellow oriental rug ran the length of it.
To the left was what she surmised to be his living room. A dark hardwood floor gleamed in the sun. A huge grand piano took up most of the space, leaving only room for a large, flowered couch.  Bookshelves lined either side of a small fireplace. To her right was a formal dining room with a huge crystal and pewter chandelier hanging over the dining room table and hutch.
“It’s to your left,” Nick said. “Above the piano.”
Rebekkah’s attention was diverted by a squat bulldog hurrying down the hallway, its tongue hanging out of an adorable, jowly face.
Nick kneeled. “Hi ya there, girl.” The dog trembled all over as he stroked her. “This is Grace. I hope you don’t mind dogs.”
Rebekkah grinned, and she kneeled to pet Grace. The dog wiggled under her hand, her stubby tail wagging fiercely as she tried to get close enough to lick Rebekkah’s face. “I love dogs.”
“Do you have any?”
Her smile faded. “No. Avram doesn’t like them. My parents have two yellow Labradors. We always had dogs in the house when I was growing up.”
Nick rose. “Great dogs. My family always had dogs, too. All right, that’s enough, Grace. Leave our guest alone.”
Grace sat immediately. She panted, her dark eyes shining up at Nick with adoration. Rebekkah laughed as she also stood. She was in love with Grace already. “It must be hard for her to be away from you. She adores you.”
Nick grinned down at his dog. “I’m a little fond of her, too. My elderly neighbor walks her for me.” He glanced at the clock on the mantel in the living room. “She probably just got back from her walk. I’m not usually home now. Come on, I’ll show you how your self-portrait looks.”
She followed him into the living room. Her likeness was hanging above the piano as he’d said. She still didn’t totally understand why he would want it. He didn’t even know her. “It looks nice in here. But it’s strange looking at myself hanging in your living room.”
He smiled at her. “I guess it would be. You did an excellent job on it. The colors are so vibrant. I can see you have talent even though I’m not an art…what’s the word? Art connoisseur.” His smile faded and he looked worried. “It doesn’t bother you that I bought it, does it?”
“No, I guess not,” Rebekkah allowed. She wouldn’t tell him she was going to give it to her parents. “I appreciate the sale. Do you play?”
He looked at the piano. “No, it was my mother’s. I haven’t been able to part with it.”
She noticed a change in his demeanor, and wondered what had caused it.
“Do you want to sit down for a while? Can I get you anything? I don’t have a lot, maybe some juice or water.”
His home was quiet and orderly, and Rebekkah had no lingering fear that he would attack her, or some such thing. She smiled at him. “No, thank you, I’m fine. Tell me about your family,” she found herself asking as she sank into his couch. Grace came to lie at her feet.
He joined her on the couch. “I have three brothers. Three of us are police officers. My youngest brother plays minor league ball. My mother, Angelina, died of cancer last year.”
Sympathy rose in Rebekkah at the pain in his eyes. “How awful.”
“Yeah, it was. I honestly think she died of a broken heart. She was totally devoted to my dad. He was a decorated police officer, and he was killed seventeen years ago. I don’t think my mom ever recovered from Michael Rossi’s death.”
Nick had such a sad, faraway look in his eyes, Rebekkah felt like an interloper. The deaths of both his parents had obviously affected him deeply. “Is that why you became a police officer?”
“Not just family tradition,” he replied. “My dad’s murderer is still out there. He was shot during a bank robbery. The case is still open. I may never find out who killed him, but I want to put away as many bad guys as possible. For him.”
She reached down to pet Grace. “I’m sure you do a great job.”
“I try. I hope this isn’t too personal, but what do you plan on doing if your husband is responsible for the break in at the art gallery and really is embezzling?”
Rebekkah frowned then her eyes drifted up to her likeness on the wall. “I’m going to divorce him. Not just because of that, but because of something else I’ve found out.”
“If you need advice, or someone to listen, call me.”
She agreed to do that then laughed as Grace gave a little woof, as if she were offering her support, too.  

About the Author
Loves reading and writing women’s fiction, romance, and humorous cozy mysteries. Currently, working on a cozy set in upstate N.Y. Born in upstate New York and have lived in South America, Indiana, Florida, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. Now lives in a small Connecticut town with her husband.When she's not writing, she loves reading, spending time by the water, traveling, and doing anything that has nothing to do with math.

Find her here

Thank you to Karoline for stopping by on her blog tour! Be sure to add THE ART OF BEING REBEKKAH to your TBR pile. What would you do if you found out someone you loved was not who they seemed?

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