Welsh girl trying to find her way in the world. All round Blogger with a passion for Fictional Characters.

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Under A Tuscan Sky by Karen Aldous Excerpt

Wales, UK
Good afternoon all, and welcome back to my blog. Today we have an excerpt from the book Under A Tuscan Sky by Karen Aldous. This is part of Jenny's book tour at Neverland Book Tours.

Under A Tuscan Sky by Karen Aldous

Escape to Tuscany this summer with Karen Aldous’s brilliantly uplifting read. Perfect for fans of Erica James and Cathy Kelly.
A summer she’ll never forget… 
When Olivia Montague’s grandmother passes away, she decides it’s finally time to make some changes in her own life. So she breaks up with her ‘going nowhere’ boyfriend and embarks on a journey to her Nonna’s home in Tuscany.
Until now, Olivia has always believed that she’s incapable of love, after being abandoned by her parents as a baby. But with each day spent at the gorgeous villa nestled in the rolling Italian hills, she feels her heart begin to flutter…

And when handsome antiques dealer Hugh St. James arrives on the scene, she realises things might be about to change forever!
Excerpt From The Book
Still feeling wretched as she unlocked the door, Olivia placed her bags on a bench and, after scanning the darkness of the hall, headed for the main sitting room. The stale air immediately wafted up her nose, shocking her into opening shutters and windows, to allow the air and light to flood into the soulless room.
It had been neglected since her nonna’s demise, which was terribly sad. Barely anything touched since she’d left it, four weeks ago, soon after her grandmother’s funeral. For as long as she could remember, Nonna had lived in just the ground-floor rooms of the large villa, whilst she was virtually running a sizeable empire up in these Tuscan hills. She’d run the farm and the vineyards on her own for years since Nonno died – with staff, of course, and managing to keep up with much of the technology.
With Gabriella’s help, Nonna had made sure the accommodation had a professional website and an email address for bookings, as well as the telephone. Nonna had also told her they were on travel sites so that reviews and bookings were twenty-four seven. Olivia was in total awe that her nonna knew so much about it all.
Her eyes rested on Nonna’s old leather chair. It was still covered with a red chequered shawl and two cotton-canvas cushions, and it sat forlorn by the fireplace appearing sulky without its occupant. Behind it was the beautiful bridal chest or cassone, which was Nonna’s pride and joy. Every visitor was told the story of her family’s chest. How her great-great-grandfather had created intricate carvings for each panel. It was very special to her.
Olivia sat on the arm of the chair. Crossing her legs and wrapping her arm around the wing, she breathed a sigh. ‘Oh, Nonna, what am I meant to do? There’s the business that, in all honesty, goes way over my head. As much as I want to make sure Gabriella and Nico remain secure, it’s too much. I have a business and home in England. I just couldn’t cope with both. And, this man Alberto? Nonna, I can’t think straight. I mean, what happened today? Where did he come from? He was so … I don’t know how to say it in words. It was here.’ She clutched her stomach.
‘Immediately I loved his eyes, even though he wears glasses. And he has this geeky look, but his pheromones ate right into my skin. But – and this is the problem – I don’t know if I’m doing right by jumping from one relationship to another so quickly. I’ve always done it. Not feeling like this of course, no, this is quite different; but I hate that I just need to feel loved without ever really feeling it back. And I was so determined to actually experience total independence.’
She buried her face in the arm of the chair for several seconds, squeezing her brow and equating herself to some mad person talking to herself. She shook her head. ‘I don’t know. I really don’t know.’
Sitting upright, she stared down at the seat for several seconds as if waiting for an answer. She peered to the other side of the chair. The inglenook still contained ashes from a fire. The beam above held layers of dust, along with several photographs of Angelo; one of her mother, Roz; and two figurines: a couple dancing and an old man wearing a sunhat. Was that Angelo too? she wondered.
At one end was a photo of them both in a gilt frame. Love emanated from their faces. Her mind flashed to Alberto’s face, and the moment of intense yearning between them. She took the frame in her hand and squatted on the hearth. A brush and poker lay flat in front of a woodpile and the rug was speckled with ash and slithers of wood.
Memories of sitting on the rug watching her grandfather build a frame of kindling came to her, the flesh of his fingers fearlessly feeding the flames with increasingly larger chunks of chopped wood until he was rewarded with a spread of flickering fire and heat. She knelt on the deep pile of the rug, feeling a sudden wave of warmth on her skin and a familiar touch, as though her nonna’s hand was stroking the back of her hair. She felt comforted, assured even that they were there and supporting her.
Minutes went by before Olivia stood and replaced the photo on the mantel beam.
‘I’d best get my phone and Alberto’s number, then get to work. There’s lots to do,’ she told the photograph firmly.

Under A Tuscan Sky by Karen Aldous
About The Author
Karen Aldous enjoys village life on the edge of the north-downs in Kent with easy access to the buzz of London. Not only does she love the passive pleasures of reading and writing, she also craves the more active pursuits with her family and friends such as walking, cycling and skiing especially when they involve food and wine!

Karen gets much of her inspiration from her travels and if she had to choose, France, Greece, Switzerland, Italy and the USA would be her favourites. However, wherever she goes, she discovers a new character emerges in 'Karen's World'. She likes to write about strong independent women who can direct their own lives - but struggle to control them! And, of course there's always a gorgeous hunk or two!

Giveaway (UK Only) 
Under A Tuscan Sky by Karen Aldous
1st prize: £10 Amazon voucher, eCopy of Under a Tuscan Sky & a signed notebook
2nd & 3rd prize: eCopy of Under a Tuscan Sky & a signed notebook
a Rafflecopter giveaway

What do you think about the sneak peak? Have you read this book?
*Information and photos in this post were sent to me by Jenny for her Book Tour.

1 comment

  1. This sounds so great! XX



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