Author: Hannah Fielding
Publisher: London Wall
A troubled young journalist finds her loyalties tested when love and desire unearth dark secrets from the past.
Spring, 2010. When Luna Ward, a science journalist from New York, travels halfway across the world to work undercover at an alternative health clinic in Cadiz, her ordered life is thrown into turmoil.
The doctor she is to investigate, the controversial Rodrigo Rueda de Calderon, is not what she expected. With his wild gypsy looks and devilish sense of humour, he is intent upon drawing her to him. But how can she surrender to a passion that threatens all reason; and how could he ever learn to trust her when he discovers her true identity? Then Luna finds that Ruy is carrying a corrosive secret of his own…
Luna’s native Spanish blood begins to fire in this land of exotic legends, flamboyant gypsies and seductive flamenco guitars, as dazzling Cadiz weaves its own magic on her heart. Can Luna and Ruy’s love survive their families’ legacy of feuding and tragedy, and rise like the phoenix from the ashes of the past?
Legacy is a story of truth, dreams and desire. But in a world of secrets you need to be careful what you wish for…
As the dancer finished her set and retreated, the gypsy stood up, came forward and murmured an announcement of the next song, making a fresh thrill ripple up Luna’s spine at the husky, masculine sound of his voice. He started the rhythmic clapping of a toca de mano, and the waiter went round refilling glasses while the audience joined in, working up to a crescendo of hand-claps until the whole tavern shook with cries of ‘olé’ and ‘anda’.
The gypsy was much taller than Luna had guessed – over six feet, with a perfectly proportioned, lithe body. Wide shoulders and a broad chest, narrow hips and muscled thighs clad in a pair of jeans that hugged his form so well it left little to the imagination. She was aware of his intense magnetism, which was just as powerful as his steely physique. At this distance, she could detect the dark, curling hair lightly covering his chest just visible at the neck of the faded T-shirt he wore with surprising panache.
The muscles of his arms flexed as this time he picked up a guitar and strummed a rapid cascade of chords. He gazed down into her eyes. The dazzling white smile he gave her almost stopped her heart and she lowered her head to hide her confusion.
As the rhythmic clapping subsided, he began to sing. His voice was rich and mellow, warm with vibrant tones and tingling with emotion, beguiling and beckoning like a filtre d’amour that scram-bled her thoughts and stirred primitive and alarming desires within her. The music was plaintive and feverish, and as Luna watched his long fingers alternately strum and flick across the strings of his guitar, first lightly and then harder at lightning speed, she found herself wondering how those hands would feel on her skin. His songs were in Caló so she could not understand the words, but she could sense the intensity of feeling that went into the full, vigorous notes and although he sang to the audience, she knew from the sensuous intimacy in his eyes that he was singing for her alone.
Luna sat breathless, her gaze fixed on his expressive face, stirred to the depths of her soul.
He was applauded madly as the last notes of his passionate melody faded and his fingers lay still on the guitar. Luna clapped as long and loudly as everyone else. New customers were now piling into the tavern, and she shook herself out of her trance and tried to wrestle back her grip on reality. She glanced at her watch: it was past one o’clock in the morning. The gypsy guitarist was surrounded by fans, young and old, and was obviously enjoying the attention. She must be thinking of getting back, she told herself, her eyes lingering on the broad, muscular back of the guitarist as he headed for the bar. She wondered if she would find a taxi at this hour. After signalling to the waiter she paid her bill, leaving a generous tip.
Then, on impulse, she took out of her purse a fifty-euro note. ‘Por favor dar a este al guitarrista que acaba de cantar, please give this to the guitarist who just sang,’ she told him.
The waiter grinned broadly. ‘Gracias, muchas gracias, señorita,’ he said, giving a curt bow. ‘But things are only warming up. Are you sure you won’t stay and enjoy the dancing?’
As if on cue, the musicians still on stage took up a fast, syncopated thrumming on their guitars and the whole crowd whooped and broke into wild stamping again.
‘You see, señorita, the night is still young, as they say.’
Luna stood up and smiled, calling on all her self-discipline. ‘Not for me, I’m afraid. But thank you, the music has been wonderful,’ she said, and started to make her way back through the room as the waiter hurried off to deliver her tip.
People jostled past Luna in their eagerness to join the dancing, which by now had spilled out on to the patio. The relentless rhythm of the music seemed to grow louder as if calling her back. And then she looked up at the bar.
He was there with the waiter, who was saying something in his ear and pointing in Luna’s direction. The guitarist ran a hand through his hair and looked at her. He nodded his thanks for the tip, and held up two glasses filled with what looked like fino. A quizzical expression danced in his bright eyes.
Luna’s mouth went dry: he was inviting her to stay. Conflicting emotions flashed through her, none that she could quite grasp but every one of them making her heart pump faster as the music continued to vibrate through the tavern.
Part of her wanted to succumb to the heady atmosphere and wished she could be like all these people – sensual, passionate, uninhibited. But something told her that if she stayed any longer she would be stepping into unfamiliar and dangerous territory, and that unnerved her far too much.
She took a deep breath and smiled back at him, shaking her head apologetically as she kept moving through the crowd. He watched her go and took a swig from one of the glasses, his gaze unwavering.
Luna made her way to the door. She went up the steps and turned at the entrance to catch a last glimpse of the man who had disturbed her equilibrium so powerfully.
Over the heads of those around him, he was still watching her intently. His lips quirked as their eyes fused again. Luna focused her camera on him and clicked, blushing at her own nerve as she did so. Her thoughts in turbulence, she stepped out abruptly into the night.
To celebrate the release of Legacy, I’m giving away a summer bag by one of my favourite designers, Karl Lagerfeld. Entry is open to all via Rafflecopter. Good luck!
Karl Lagerfeld Choupette on the Beach Shopper (£155/$225): http://www.stylebop.com/uk/product_details.php?id=681184
Hannah Fielding is an incurable romantic. The seeds for her writing career were sown in early childhood, spent in Egypt, when she came to an agreement with her governess Zula: for each fairy story Zula told, Hannah would invent and relate one of her own. Years later – following a degree in French literature, several years of travelling in Europe, falling in love with an Englishman, the arrival of two beautiful children and a career in property development – Hannah decided after so many years of yearning to write that the time was now. Today, she lives the dream: writing full time at her homes in Kent, England, and the South of France, where she dreams up romances overlooking breath-taking views of the Mediterranean.
Hannah is a multi-award-winning novelist, and to date she has published five novels: Burning Embers, ‘romance like Hollywood used to make’, set in Kenya; The Echoes of Love, ‘an epic love story that is beautifully told’ set in Italy; and the Andalusian Nights Trilogy – Indiscretion, Masquerade and Legacy – her fieriest novels yet, set in sunny, sultry Spain.
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