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Love, obsession, and betrayal, the most powerful human emotions, are spun together in this gothic novel. Tandie Harrison is a police medium who has just suffered a divorce after losing both her psychic visions and her daughter in a car accident. When she leaves New York City to start a new life near her hometown, she moves into the alluring plantation house, Chelby Rose, and falls for its charismatic caretaker, Eric Fontalvo. Their burgeoning affair ignites a centuries old curse, ensnaring them in a web of danger, deceit, and intrigue. Soon Tandie learns that in placid Bolivia, the worlds of the living and the dead are dangerously connected.
Hacienda Moon is a seductive tale of one woman’s journey to confront the demons of her past and find the courage to face her future. It is a mesmerizing novel that explores the deepest depths of human nature, and the characters will hold and haunt you long after you have read the final chapter.
The sneak peek:
"How many months has it been since you last had sex?" Frieda asked Tandie while taking a drink. She nearly spit out her Bahama Mama as she glanced around the club full of people, thankful they sat in a place where a rock band was playing. "It's okay to say: 'Frieda I haven't had sex in ages. Jack was a royal bastard who made me feel like the ice queen. So I never wanted any.' "Frieda took another swallow of her drink.
Even Tandie had to laugh, even though she was glad to be the designated driver. “Must we talk about something like that in a club?”
"Like that? Do you mean to say sex? Let me hear you say it?" Frieda teased.
Tandie rolled her eyes upward. "You know what I meant."
“If we weren’t in a club, you would still clam up. Mental note to me: Must take my bestie out more often before she forgets how to have any kind of fun at all. Deal?”
“All right, deal. Anything to keep you quiet.” Tandie glanced around, taking in the club scene. She hadn’t been anywhere near a dance floor like this one in almost six years. Getting involved with someone hadn’t even crossed her mind, especially while she still grieved for Breena. In the presence of a cute guy, she either stuttered or dropped her tampons at his feet.
“Frieda Tyson. You made it,” a dark-haired woman with a braid sweeping her waistline announced. A gangly man stood behind her, scoffing. Dressed in an apron, he was the thinnest male Tandie had ever seen. Spiky brown hair gave him a rock star look and the thick-rimmed glasses he wore reminded her of a movie she couldn't quite finger.
Frieda stood, embraced the woman, and stepped back to admire the huge diamond on her left hand. “Whoa! You must’ve really whipped it on him, Shania.”
“It was those tips and pointers you gave me. Now I know why you’re such a good therapist.” The two women exchanged laughs, while the gangly man standing behind them shook his head and sighed.
"Excuse, me," he said to Tandie and Frieda, "Shania, can you tell me where to sit this box of glasses. It feels like I'm holding an elephant."
"Gus, my fearless multi-tasker. Meet my co-worker, Frieda, and her sidekick I haven't met," Shania said. Her voice was light and her carefree attitude made Tandie want to know more about her.
Frieda turned to Tandie. “This is my good girlfriend, Tandie Harrison. She recently moved back here. Keep an eye on this chick, Shania. She intends to be a bestselling author.”
“Ah yes. I’ve read one of your non-fiction pieces. I especially enjoyed the one where you explain how you channel psychic energy. Excellent piece of literature,” Shania said and turned to Gus. "Put those over behind the wet bar. Those are for the Geisha celebration next week."
"It's about time," he muttered and turned to Tandie and Frieda, "Nice meeting you ladies. Try not to be strangers." His eyes were locked on Tandie, making her feel uneasy.
“Thanks,” Tandie said. Gus nodded and moved on toward the bar.
Tandie's gaze drifted off to the right side of Shania. The man sitting at the bar, the same man she’d run into at the airport a week ago, had his gaze locked on her. Tandie looked away, pretending not to notice him. But each time she glanced back in his direction he was still watching. Her breath hitched, and her pulse increased. It was the same feeling she experienced before when she last saw him.
Hugging her shoulders, she suddenly had the urge to leave the area. Frieda and Shania were engrossed in their own conversation, so Tandie had no problem slipping away.
She had wanted to investigate the rooftop dining area ever since they arrived. She headed up the steps leading to the balcony, taking in a quick breath when the cool nighttime wind bit into the top Frieda made her wear. A July night at the beach sometimes packed the same ice-cold punch as a September one. There were fewer people sitting at the tables.
Leaning on the rail facing the ocean, she took in the black view and listened to the waves sloshing against shores invisible in the nighttime hours. Something rode the waves in the distance. At first glance it resembled a cruise ship sailing along fully lit. Tandie moved over to the telescope attached to the rail and glanced at the ship. Inside the lens, the ship’s form changed. It was more like a blurry silhouette of a ship. Straining to focus on it, Tandie stretched her eyes until they felt dry. And then like magic, the ship disappeared completely from view. No lights, blurry outlines, no nothing. “Whoa. Too much Bahama Mama tonight, I think.”
"Nope. It's not your wine. Not that you'd be the type to get drunk," a woman's deeply accented voice said from behind her. The woman dressed in a red shirt and black jeans was pretty in a gothic kind of way. Her dark red lips blended in with her deep auburn tresses; but her eyes lined with mascara reminded Tandie of a burglar. "There's really a ship out there, but only certain ones of us can see it. Creepy isn't it?"
The woman studied the ocean, lost in her thoughts. Tandie always attracted strangers who would suddenly start spilling all their secrets. It had been that way for her ever since she was a little girl. But this woman along with the disappearing ship she had just seen succeeded in making her jittery. The chill in the air increased and the thin cottony blouse she wore did a lousy job of blocking any wind.
"Wow. It's really cold up here. I'm heading back inside."
"Don't you wanna know why you can see it?" the woman asked.
An invisible force stopped Tandie in her tracks. There was no way this woman could be talking about the ship she just saw. "Not really, I’m good," Tandie answered truthfully, turning to study her face.
"We can see it because I'm touched by death. And you…" she turned and narrowed her eyes at Tandie. "You got the witches mark. I can smell dark magic on somebody all the way from my house."
Feeling a bit anxious, Tandie turned to go back inside the club. The woman moved in her path and stepped closer to her face. "You stay away from what's mine, witch. Do you hear me?"
"I don't even know you. It would be hard to take something from a person I don't even know," Tandie said, inching back toward the telescope. She really wished her psychic intuition still worked.
"Abby! What's going on?" a male's deep voice said behind the woman. She flashed a bright smile just before she turned around and said, "Not a thing. We girls were just having a little chat."
It was him, the man from the airport and the bar. He strolled toward them. His dark shirt and blue jeans gave him a strikingly mysterious appearance under the balcony’s lights. With his gaze locked on Tandie, she suddenly understood the woman's warning. Sure, he was drop-dead sexy; but it was more like the turn-me-into-a-zombie kind of death. That way I can come back and kidnap you when I'm ready.
"I'm sorry, ma'am. Abby doesn't mean to be this way. We still have to keep child locks on the cupboards because of her."
Abby clucked her tongue. "Don't you dare talk down to me."
"Look, people. I don’t have a clue about who you two are; but y’all need to work out your problems. I'm heading back inside to get my friend. Try to have a good night," Tandie said and headed back into the club before the man could say anything else, and before that woman accused her of being a witch again.
She holds the MFA in creative writing, and loves to play CLUE, Monopoly (the Indiana Jones version), and Pandora's Box (good writer's block therapy). She lives in an L-shaped house with a garden dedicated to her grandmother. It has a secret library complete with fairies, Venetian plastered walls, and a desk made out of clear blue glass.