Blair underwood Presents: From Cape Town with Love (Tennyson Hardwick Series #3) [NOOK Book]

Overview

THE AWARD-WINNING AUTHORS OF CASANEGRA AND IN THE NIGHT OF THE HEAT TEAM UP FOR A THIRD TIME TO PRESENT FROM CAPE TOWN WITH LOVE, A TENNYSON HARDWICK NOVEL.

Actor-turned-detective Tennyson Hardwick has solved two high-profile deaths in Hollywood, but nothing has prepared him for a race to save a child’s life.

Tennyson’s past in the sex game cost him his new girlfriend, ...
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Blair underwood Presents: From Cape Town with Love (Tennyson Hardwick Series #3)

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Overview

THE AWARD-WINNING AUTHORS OF CASANEGRA AND IN THE NIGHT OF THE HEAT TEAM UP FOR A THIRD TIME TO PRESENT FROM CAPE TOWN WITH LOVE, A TENNYSON HARDWICK NOVEL.

Actor-turned-detective Tennyson Hardwick has solved two high-profile deaths in Hollywood, but nothing has prepared him for a race to save a child’s life.

Tennyson’s past in the sex game cost him his new girlfriend, and he brings her to Cape Town, South Africa—a scenic film destination and playground for the rich—to try to win her back. There Tennyson is hired as a bodyguard by superstar Sofia Maitlin when she visits an orphanage to adopt an African child.

Months later, Maitlin offers Tennyson one of Hollywood’s hottest tickets—a job as a bodyguard at adopted daughter Nandi’s A-list celebrity birthday party.

But the party is over before it begins. When Nandi’s birthday goes dreadfully wrong, it’s up to a guilt-ridden Tennyson to save a child’s life and reunite a Hollywood family.

But how? He can’t go to the police, the FBI has threatened to arrest him, and Big Brother is monitoring his telephone calls.

To find Nandi, Tennyson will have to rely on tips from his father—a retired LAPD captain—and a mysterious woman from his past, Marsha, who has already proven she can’t be trusted. His strongest lead is a deadly knife fighter known only as Spider.

When his search for the missing child crosses Marsha’s covert investigation into a criminal gang with ties to South Africa, Tennyson knows that finding Nandi might cost him his freedom—or his life.

 
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781439164945
  • Publisher: Atria Books
  • Publication date: 5/18/2010
  • Sold by: SIMON & SCHUSTER
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 384
  • Sales rank: 420,739
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

Blair Underwood is an author and award-winning actor, director, and producer. He lives in Los Angeles, California. Visit his website at BlairUnderwood.com

Tananarive Due is an American Book Award-winning, Essence bestselling author of Blood Colony, The Living Blood, The Good House, and Joplin’s Ghost. She lives in Atlanta, Georgia. Visit her blog at TananariveDue.blogspot.com.

Steven Barnes is an award-winning author of twenty-three novels, including the New York Times bestseller The Cestus Deception. Visit his website at LifeWrite.com.

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Read an Excerpt


ONE

SEVEN MONTHS EARLIER
NOVEMBER 5, 2008
SOUTH AFRICA

April Forrest’s eyes widened. “Ten . . . what happened to your face?”

In the bosom of beauty, ugly comes as a shock. The swelling and bruises across my face made me look like I’d just been attacked by a prison gang. Might as well have been—although it was just one man. In the swamp.

When April left Los Angeles to teach in South Africa for six months, she’d left me, too. We had passed the one-year milestone right before she changed her mind about us, and an ocean and ten thousand miles had suddenly seemed like a small toll to see her again. I wanted to know what had scared her off—but maybe it was written all over my face.

“Long story,” I said. “I tried, but I couldn’t find flowers this late. May I come in?”

Apparently, long story wasn’t enough to get the door open any wider. April was lithe and fine, with skin the color of ginger.

She was living in a tiny cinder-block house on a street of modest but well-kept homes in a middle-class section of Soweto, outside Johannesburg. In the bright light from the porch, I saw her jaw shift with uncertainty. Her delicate chin and gently swaying braids, adorned with regal white beads at the ends, reminded me of why some men could be driven to beg.

Two or three loose dogs I’d seen outside the gate were barking at me from the unlighted street. Two yipped harmlessly, but one sounded like thunder. A week before, I’d killed a German shepherd in the Florida swamp. The memory of the dog’s last yelp, and his master’s last labored breath, still iced my blood.

“You look like you almost got murdered, Ten. What happened?”

“The T. D. Jackson case.” My investigation into the death of football star T. D. Jackson had taken me places that were hard to put into words. Dad had told me that an LAPD officer who had been through my ordeal might have been considered like an OIS, Officer Involved Shooting, and sent to counseling. “Like I said, April . . . long story.”

April’s look told me that I was failing my first test since our breakup. In her place, I might close the door on me. Dying hope flashed hot in my chest. I knew it then: I shouldn’t have come to see April without calling her first, like my father and Chela told me before I left.

“Ten, I can’t . . . I’m not alone.”

She’s already with somebody else? A foreign rage tightened the back of my neck. I didn’t know if I was more pissed at her for moving on, or at myself for flying across the world to witness her new life up close.

When an older woman appeared behind April in the doorway, I wanted to hug her. April was boarding, so she was living with her hostess! The woman looked about fifty-five, but her skin was so smooth that she might have been ten or fifteen years older. Bright silver hair framed her forehead beneath her colorful head scarf. The slope of her nose and sharp cheekbones reminded me of Alice. Beauty, timeless. Another woman. A different time. Despite the severity of her frown, the stranger’s face forced me to stare.

“I’m sorry it’s so late, Mrs. Kunene,” April apologized. A faint living-room light was on, but the woman might have been asleep. It was ten P.M. in Johannesburg, late for an unannounced visitor. I hadn’t thought about the hour when I jumped into the taxi at the airport and told the driver to go to the address April had given me. A lot had changed since the last time I was in South Africa.

The streets were so dark, I had no idea how the driver found his way.

“This is my friend Tennyson. From the U.S.”

April said friend as if it was the whole story. I could barely smile for her hostess—not that a smile would have helped my face. Mrs. Kunene looked like she was trying to decide if she should call the police right then, or wait for me to look at her the wrong way.

After a twenty-two-hour flight via Amsterdam, I couldn’t fake pleasantries with a hostile stranger. “Come away with me for a long weekend,” I said into April’s ear, not quite a whisper. I’d planned a more elegant approach, but the sight of April’s face had drained my memory. My palms were damp, like my virgin friends used to say in high school.

April touched her ear, coaxing away a strand of hair. “Ten . . . slow down . . .”

A broad-shouldered man with snowy white hair appeared next, wearing only his slacks, roused from bed. Mr. Kunene might be my father’s age, but his motion was agile and his face was as smooth as his wife’s.

“April, this man is your friend?” he said. “He looks like a tsotsi!”

I admired his lyrical accent despite the insult: He’d just said I looked like a gangster.

April planted her foot in the doorway to keep the door from slamming in my face. Her foot was as firm as her voice was gentle: “Yes, yes, he’s a good friend. It’s all right.”

“Is he drunk?” Mrs. Kunene called, stepping back. The rolled r’s in the woman’s accent were music. She made drunk sound like a state to aspire to.

“Sir and madam, I am not drunk,” I said. “Please accept my apologies for stopping by so late. I have to talk to April right away.” When they heard my reasonableness, and my American accent, some of the alarm left their eyes.

I pointed out the gate, where the tattered taxi that had brought me waited, a dingy gray VW Citi Golf that had once been white. One of the back taillights was missing, and the other glowed dimly. The driver sat inside, awaiting my verdict. The yipping dogs still barked, but the larger one had moved on. April saw the taxi and realized delays were costing me.

“I’ll be right here on the porch,” April said to her hosts, and slipped outside before they could object. The white curtains fluttered at the window as they watched us.

On the porch, I had an impulse to pull April close—but I followed her lead and kept a two-foot distance. If I tried to touch her and she flinched away, no words would rescue us.

“Sorry, but she’s a minister,” April explained, hushed. “They’re strict with boarders.”

Good. I hoped they ran the house like a damn nunnery. “I need a face-to-face conversation with you,” I said.

April’s eyes fell away, and my throat burned. A month ago, April would have fussed over my bruises, planting her soft lips on mine.

“Let me take you somewhere beautiful,” I said. “Don’t we deserve time, April?”

“Yes, but . . . I’m working until Saturday.”

“Make up an excuse.”

“Lying comes easier to some people, Ten.” No irony or malice, just a fact. And she was right. If I’m not careful, lying is my nature.

“Then meet me for coffee tomorrow.” The exhaustion shredding my voice must have sounded like desperation, but I hadn’t had a good night’s sleep in a week. “Tell me when you have a break, and I’ll come pick you up.”

Silence again. I’d envisioned myself staying with April—yeah, right—so I didn’t have a reservation at a hotel. Another hassle waited, and the day was already ending on a sour note.

My driver, Sipho, was watching me through his open driver’s-side window, eager to see me give him our signal: a thumbs-up if he could drive away, a thumbs-down if he should wait.

When I gave Sipho the thumbs-down, I heard him click his teeth with disgust. “Eish! No woman wants the nice guy!” he called from his window, repeating his mantra from our ride.

When I’d told Sipho the story of how April left the States to teach and then broke up with me by telephone, he’d let out a shout, as if she’d shot me. A rich man like you, treated this way by a woman! Maybe he was merely angling for a tip, but he was my only friend that night.

I was getting mad, and so far anger had nothing to do with April and me. I hoped I wouldn’t have to scorch April in those flames. Neither of us would salvage anything from that.

“April, if you’re through with me, help me wrap my head around it.”

April touched my forehead, just above a bruise, and her touch extinguished my anger. “Where would we go?” she said. “If I get the days off.”

I stepped toward April and cradled her cheeks with my palms. Her chin sank against the heels of my hands. For a precious few seconds, she trusted me to hold her up.

I did not try to kiss her. Holding her face was enough.

“I know the perfect place,” I said.

Cape Town might be our last chance.

© 2010 Trabajando,

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 21 )
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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 21 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 3, 2011

    This is it for me.

    The combination of a thin plot, increasingly unlikable and vain lead. character, and obvious disdain for woman have worn me out. I'm finished with this series.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 3, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    When Danger Comes Knocking

    Actor and detective Tennyson Hardwick has solved two high-profile deaths in Hollywood, but nothing has prepared him for a race to save a child's life. His past in the sex game cost him his girlfriend, and he travels to Africa to try to win her back. While in Africa he's hired as a bodyguard by superstar Sofia Maitlin for her visit to an orphanage to adopt an African child. Months later, Maitlin hires Tennyson as a bodyguard at her adopted daughter Nandi's birthday party. When Nandi goes missing at the party, Tennyson is in for the race of his life to save Nandi's life and bring her home safely to her parents. Not being able to go to the police or FBI, Tennyson is left to his own tactics and the help of his father, a retired LAPD captain, and a mysterious woman from his past, Marsha, who has proven she can't be trusted. When his search for Nandi leads him to a deadly African gang, Tennyson now realizes he is in a fight for his life. With danger lurking around every corner, this suspenseful, action packed novel is a page turner that is hard to put down. Use of the African culture paints a clear picture, allowing the reader to be fully immersed in the culture of that majestic country. With an intricate plot and well developed characters, this novel is sure to please lovers of suspense. I was a little apprehensive about reading this because I did not read the other two novels in the series but I can say that I was not lost in the story and would recommend this book even if you have not read the others. Reviewed by: Lashonda

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 16, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Beautiful, free and brave all greatly describe.

    Hardwick, Tennyson Hardwick. Who far outweighs James Bond, baby! Within this novel you will continue to witness the evolution of a solid MAN. A problem solver who acts, as Marsha states. Oh, who is Marsha, you ask? Pick up Cape Town and find out. She's a real piece of work!

    If you thought you loved Hardwick before, as he pushed along and did his thing in Casanegra and In The Night of The Heat, Cape Town will infinitely seal you to him as his layers peel back and boundaries are removed to reveal the core of who he is. A very loving person.

    The 3rd tale of this series often filled me with emotion considering there is an innocent victim at the heart of the story that only Mister Ten can save, but it means riding a mighty chaotic wave (April) in the process, so hold on fellow readers. Ten's really got to dig in and transform to make this happen, but hope floats.

    With that said, the dynamic writing of Due and Barnes presents a harrowing adventure that vividly places you alongside Tennyson as he loves, loses, fights and triumphs that simply can't be missed.

    Plus we get to vicariously visit some really beautiful and exciting places through the strokes of the authors' pens that we may never set foot on in real life.

    Enjoy!

    p.s. Come hang out with Tennyson Hardwick on Facebook

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 15, 2010

    It just keeps getting better!!

    It has been said that the road to hell is paved with good intentions.

    Someone clearly has never told Tennyson Hardwick this because from the moment he steps foot on the soil of South Africa -- majestic, beautiful and the place where the rich and famous pay mighty to get as close to God's beauty on earth as possible -- the hero we all love to love finds out just where his good intentions take him. He's there to win back the love of his life, the only woman who managed to tame the heart of the gigolo turned actor turned private detective. It's the latter that drove April away after she watched him solve two high-profile Hollywood murders while at the same time barely escaping with his own life.

    So instead of just licking the wounds of his broken heart and falling into the first bed he could find, which is easy when you are a man like Ten, he heads to South Africa on a mission to get his girl. But soon into the trip, he finds himself guarding a Hollywood A-list actress when she visits an orphanage to adopt an African child.

    That successful trip puts him on the speed dial of superstar Sofia Maitlin and garners him another gig serving as a bodyguard at her adopted daughter's birthday party. It was supposed to be an easy day, guarding a pampered American princess who was being celebrated by Hollywood royalty. But like Tennyson always finds out, good intentions lead to no where but hell.

    Next comes a kidnapping that puts Ten right in the middle of a web of lies, espionage, danger and uncertainty that only he can escape. And, this time he has someone else who needs him more, a beautiful little girl's life hangs in the balance.

    If you thought Casanegra was good and In the Night of the Heat was better, than not picking up From Cape Town with Love is not even an option. Join Ten on his latest case, where he falls back on what he knows and teams up with a mystery woman from his past that is supposed to help him with what he doesn't know. Don't skip a page because you are going to want to be there for every single word. After all, it just keeps getting better.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 21, 2012

    Excellen

    I love this series. I am so hooked.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 17, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Suspenseful,Exhilarating & Sexy

    Suspenseful, exhilarating and sexy. From Cape Town with Love will leave you on the edge of your seat as once again Tennyson Hardwick has found himself in another mess. This page turner will have you holding your breathe as the intoxicating actor/bodyguard Ten deals with love, family, work and his own mortality.

    If ever there was a book made for the big screen, this is it. The trio of authors do an excellent job helping us to visualize the beauty of South Africa, experience the roller coaster of emotions from the characters all while reminding us that everyone is vulnerable. Although reading Casanegra and In the Night of the Heat is not required, I strongly encourage doing so in order to fully appreciate the authors development of the characters.

    It has been a pleasure taking these adventures with Tennyson Hardwick and I look forward to more.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 16, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    A 5 Star Read!

    If you thought you loved Tennyson Hardwick before, as he pushed along and did his thing in Casanegra and In The Night of The Heat, Cape Town will infinitely seal you to him.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted May 31, 2010

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    Posted December 29, 2011

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    Posted March 21, 2011

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    Posted July 29, 2010

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    Posted August 15, 2010

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    Posted September 30, 2010

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    Posted July 27, 2011

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    Posted December 12, 2010

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    Posted June 25, 2010

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    Posted June 2, 2010

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    Posted June 17, 2010

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    Posted August 16, 2010

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    Posted May 6, 2014

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