Tuscan Heat

Tuscan Heat

by Kathleen Dienne

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Overview

When Sara Wright's boyfriend dumped her before their planned trip to Italy she decided to mend her shattered ego with an adventure. Going on the trip solo, she set herself two rules: avoid cynicism and say yes to every opportunity...

When opportunity arrived as darkly handsome and seductive Marco D'Alessandro offering to be her personal guide to Florence, Sara found herself saying yes. Yes to days filled with museums and the city's best restaurants, and to nights filled with wild abandon.

What started as a fairy-tale fling turns more serious when Marco begins to mend Sara's heart. But while Marco appears to be the perfect distraction, he's keeping a secret from her and she only has four days to find out who her lover really is...

46,000 words

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781426897030
Publisher: Carina Press
Publication date: 07/15/2013
Sold by: HARLEQUIN
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 264 KB

About the Author

Kathleen Dienne has been a reporter, a theatrical stage manager, a video game consultant and even a ghostwriter. Being a storyteller is the most fun of all.

She is very lucky to have the enthusiastic support of a brilliant husband, a delightful toddler and many friends inside the computer. When she isn't writing, she's reading. Secretly, she practices Italian with those "speak and learn" CDs in hopes of someday moving to Tuscany. So far, the only person picking up Italian with any fluency is the toddler.

Visit kathleendienne.com to check out excerpts from all of her books. Sometimes there are recipes on the blog. You can also find her on Facebook (friend her or fan her to see some of the vacation pictures that inspired this book), and follow her on Twitter (KathleenDienne). Want to compare libraries? She's on Goodreads. Finally, she loves hearing from readers, so drop her a line.

Kathleen's other Carina Press books to date are Her Heart's Divide and Her Kind of Hero. Thanks for reading!

Read an Excerpt

I had jet lag and a shattered ego. I should not have added wine to the mix.

The concierge at the Hotel del Giglio swore that nothing would get me acclimated to Florence faster than a glass of wine at her favorite enoteca. I tried to say I wasn't up to the local bar scene after the day's endless round of delayed flights and lost luggage.

I guess I was standing in an ancient brick cellar, half-crocked on a single glass of red wine, in large part because she didn't roll her eyes at the silly American tourist.

"Your phrase book says an enoteca is a wine bar, and it probably is, in—" She had paused discreetly.

"Silver Spring, Maryland."

"Ah, yes. But here, an enoteca is an experience. One samples, one nibbles, one becomes acquainted with new vintages in order to choose a bottle to take on a picnic. You will find it helps you to get into a Tuscan frame of mind."

I was all for a Tuscan frame of mind. My mind needed to catch up with my body, which was already wearing a locally purchased cocktail dress and heeled sandals. As I took another sip of the wine, it occurred to me that the concierge had directed me to the clothing shop as well as the wine bar. She was probably off duty now and rolling in kicked back euros. Larry would have thought so, anyway.

I thumped my fist on the ancient wood of the bar in frustration. Not even one day on the ground and I'd already failed.

"Scusi, signorina, ma perch arrabbiata?"

I turned to see who was talking to me. Tall, broad shoulders, thick dark hair with a silky lock flopping over his forehead, and cheekbones carved by Michelangelo. His wide brown eyes were strangely sad, an expression at odds with a flashing smile of white, even teeth. He was exactly what I was looking for. Of course he was the person who caught me being insane.

Then again, maybe he was sent by fate to let me have a do-over on my promise.

"Nohn capeesco," I said, with a sheepish little wave. "Sohno Americahna."

He grinned. He had a single dimple that I stared at in fascination. It took me a moment to realize he was still talking, and this time in English. "You must pardon me. With your dress, your olive skin and your hair, I assumed you were a local girl."

"Nope, I'm afraid not. But now I've got to ask, what makes my hair local?"

His smile grew even wider. "It has beauty without artifice, and you have not stuffed it into a limp ponytail."

"Hey, now. I have to defend my fellow tourists. Anything would be limp in this heat." I gave him a little wink.

He winked back. "Not everything, surely. Are you sure you are not Italian? Your accent was quite good."

"Since that was almost all the Italian I memorized, it was easy to practice."

"All?"

"Oh, okay, not quite all. Doh-vay eel bahnyo? Mahngeeahtoe oon peh-sheh marchio."

He threw back his head and laughed. He had a wonderful laugh, rich and deep, and his whole body participated. His shirt fit a little more tightly than an American's would, and I could see hard stomach muscles rippling with the force of his amusement. "Well, Americana, the bathroom is over to your left, and we shall be careful not to serve you any bad fish," he said, wiping his eyes. "Anything else?"

"Pew veeno, per fahvoray."

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