"If you are looking for a series that keeps you on the edge, wondering what will happen next, wondering how an author created a jaw-dropping, heart-stopping book. Then look no further. Genie has created that with this series." --Bunnies Review

Friday, December 14, 2012


Friends can provide a different perspective about people we thought we knew, as in this excerpt.

***Excerpt from CHALLENGING THE LEGACY, copyright by Genene Valleau, writing as Genie Gabriel

A short time later, they pulled up in front of a quietly elegant restaurant.
"The sign says they're closed," Tallie said. 

"I've made special arrangements with the owner." Pierce smiled as he walked around to Tallie's door and helped her out. 

He escorted her to a side door of the restaurant, which was thrown open by an everyday-looking man with extraordinarily perceptive eyes. "So this is your special lady." 

He ignored Pierce and focused his laser gaze on Tallie. Looking beyond her favorite sweater and carefully natural make-up to...what? Tallie wondered. Did he see the secrets in her past? The insecurities that had resurfaced upon seeing Pierce again? 

"You have chosen well." He kissed the back of Tallie's hand, then enveloped Pierce in a bear hug and pounded him heartily on the back. "You scoundrel. Have you become so important you don't have time to see your friends?"

"Busy, Antoine." Pierce pronounced his friend's name as "ah-twan" with a perfect French accent. 

"Our lives are meaningless without time for friends and family." Antoine walked briskly into the kitchen. "Let's get started." 

Wondering what the man and Pierce had cooked up, Tallie followed Antoine while Pierce closed the door behind them. 

"Wash your hands at the smaller sink," Antoine directed. "Then put on a clean apron." He waved toward a row of pegs with a dozen or more white aprons arranged in stiffly starched precision along the wall. 

"What are we doing?" Tallie dared to ask, even as she followed the man's orders. 

"Pierce didn't tell you?" 

When Tallie shook her head, the man laughed. A joyous belly laugh that shook the slight paunch on his otherwise lean frame. "Trust is a rare commodity in a woman." 

He moved around the kitchen and began assembling ingredients on the center cooking island. "We are going to prepare a meal fit for royalty, and then eat it ourselves." 

A delighted smile bloomed from Tallie's heart. She had always felt uncomfortable in the posh restaurants where Pierce had taken her. However, she was quite at home in the kitchen preparing meals. Even if the end result was the same, her perception of the experience was quite different. 

Perhaps Pierce knew more about her than she had given him credit for. She flashed a quick smile at him before focusing on what Antoine saying. 

"We shall start with Quiche Lorraine. No matter what you Americans say, in my country real men not only eat quiche, they prepare it." Holding three eggs in one of his hands, Antoine frowned at Pierce. "Where is your apron, my friend? If you don't help, you don't eat." 

Pierce shrugged and selected an apron from the peg. Tallie had never seen him in a role other than being the one giving orders. Once again, her view of him was challenged--but only momentarily, as Antoine's meal preparations again claimed her attention. 

While the quiche was baking, Antoine instructed Pierce to fetch a variety of fresh vegetables out of the refrigerator while he prepared pasta for Soup au Pistou. After the ingredients had been combined and the soup was simmering, Antoine cut meat into thin slices for Steak au Polvre. 

"I'll never be able to eat this much," Tallie declared, breathing deeply of the tantalizing aroma of cheese and flaky crust baking golden brown in the quiche, and the delicate tang of herbs in the soup. 

However, she did eat heartily. Throughout the afternoon and into the evening, they prepared foods and ate leisurely, while Tallie saw Pierce through the eyes of his irreverent college friend, rather than through the intimidated eyes of the twenty-something she had been when they first met. 

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