Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: World Castle Publishing
Date of Publication: 1/1/13
Number of pages: 270
Word Count: 82,000
At thirty, Nora Kehoe is feeling pressured to settle down. On a blind date, Nora unexpectedly ends up in the emergency room where she meets Dr. John Blessing. She hopes the pragmatic Dr. Blessing can make her life complete. Then, a passionate encounter with a childhood friend changes everything.
The charismatic Jean Marc Gaspard manages the family business, Gaspard Fisheries. But rumors abound that Jean Marc is running more than seafood through the waters around Manchac Louisiana. When a family crisis sends Nora to Manchac, she is thrown headlong into the dangerous world of smugglers and swindlers. And as Jean Marc tries to protect Nora from his past, he realizes he may lose her because of it.
The dark bayou waters run deep with secrets in Louisiana, and every Cajun knows how to dance the fine line between the right and wrong side of the law. But for strangers, learning the steps to staying alive in the swamps can be tricky. Life, and love, will be dependent on how well one can master the … Acadian Waltz.
For many, the course of an entire lifetime could be summed up in a few defining moments, but moments do not choose your path. There was always an indescribable force lurking inside of us that shaped our destiny. Whether this motivation was the result of fear, longing, or in my case, guilt, it haunted our being and oversaw our every action. Like a constant voice inside our heads, this energy gave each of our lives direction.
My inner voice was hugely influenced by the city where I was born. Built at the bend in the Mississippi River and tucked behind protective levees, New Orleans nurtured a peculiar world infatuated with the Catholic rituals of sin and penance. Therefore, it should be no surprise that those of us who endured in this swamp-ridden land below the level of the sea had mastered the art of sin. In fact, we turned it into something of a tourist industry. It was the penance part that many of us had not quite gotten a handle on. But God, in his infinite wisdom, wanted to make sure that we were always reminded of our heavy feelings of culpability. That was why he created the greatest guilt-making machine of them all—the mother.
Mine was named Claire Mouton Gaspard Kehoe Schuller. My mother’s first husband, Etienne Gaspard, had been her high school sweetheart. Etienne was known for running touchdowns, shrimp boats, and little else. Their marriage ended the day my mother first laid eyes on Clayton Kehoe at the criminal court house, where she had gone, yet again, to bail her drunk husband out of jail.
Her second husband, the late Clayton Kehoe, had been a prominent attorney in the city of New Orleans. Mother’s current husband was a Jewish jewelry maker named Lou Schuller. Lou was not as influential as Kehoe had been, but infinitely more skilled with gold and diamonds, which invariably pleased my mother to no end. But my mother had always insisted that it was Clayton Kehoe who had swept her off her feet from the first moment their eyes met.
“Your father,” Mother would always say. “Had the sweetest way of talking, and he always knew how to treat a lady like a queen.”
My mother was nineteen and my father was thirty-two when they married. It was a happy marriage, with lots of parties, many friends, and eventually the arrival of me, Nora Theresa Kehoe. I was named after my mother’s favorite saint and my father’s favorite movie star.
Marriage to my father must have agreed with Claire. She enjoyed being the wife of a well-connected New Orleans attorney, and thrived on the social circuit of parties and political gatherings. Even after my father died when I was fourteen, she would still meet with her old friends from the various political groups around the city, and pound the pavement for many of my father’s former colleagues who were running for office. But that all ended when she married Lou Schuller.
At fifty-five, Lou was dumpy, chubby, bald, and had the personality of a matzo ball. But Lou had the money to keep Claire in the lifestyle to which she had made herself accustomed, even after all the insurance money my father had left ran out. In the beginning of their marriage, Lou tolerated my mother’s love for the social scene, but he soon grew tired of the endless cocktail parties and political fundraisers, and reined in Claire’s activities. Now, after fifteen years of marriage, middle-aged, and trying to cope with the passage of her youth, my mother had found a new venture in which to place all of her efforts; me. Or more to the point, my marriage to some man, preferably wealthy, in the hopes of attaining the beat all and end all of middle age—grandchildren.
Alexandrea Weis is an advanced practice registered nurse who was born and raised in New Orleans. Her first novel, To My Senses, introduced readers to the world of Nicci Beauvoir and garnered numerous awards and rave reviews. Her popular second Nicci Beauvoir novel, Recovery, won the Gold Medal for best romantic suspense from The Reader’s Favorite Book Awards 2011, and was named best Romantic Suspense novel by the Spring 2011 NABE Pinnacle Book Awards. Her fourth novel, Broken Wings, won best Contemporary Romance by the NABE Pinnacle Book Awards in 2012, was a Silver Medal winner in the ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards for Romance, as well as a finalist in the USA Book Awards for Romance in 2012, and a finalist in the Reader’s Favorite Book Awards for Contemporary Romance for 2012. Diary of a One-Night Stand, was released in August 2012 and was named a Paranormal Romance Guild’s Best Reviewed of 2012.
Her last novel, Acadian Waltz was a Readers’ Favorite Book Awards honorable mention winner for Best Contemporary Romance, and finalist in Best Southern Fiction. A permitted wildlife rehabber with the Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries, Weis rescues orphaned and injured wildlife. She lives with her husband and pets in New Orleans.
Author Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Alexandrea-Weis/e/B0028OJO6C/