I’m excited to have an excerpt from Minta Hall’s The Magician of Wall Street, a new release from Entangled Publishing under their Indulgence imprint. Check out the excerpt, and then fill in the widget for a chance to win a digital copy for yourself!
Oliver Pendragon opened the door of the Tarot-A-While Bookstore and strode in with more assurance than he felt. Never show weakness. Never mind that the object of his quest could toss him out on his butt before he could say three words.
Never mind that if he failed, she’d be dead in a week.
He stood by the shop door, eclipsing the sun’s final evening glimmerings, but no one inside took the slightest notice of his entry. A small clutch of women huddled in the far corner. They sat on folding chairs and leaned forward, breathless as they focused on a woman sitting at a rickety card table.
The shop had the paradoxical charm of a little old lady in black motorcycle leather and spike-heeled boots. Despite the store’s predilection for mind-boggling merchandise in confusing disarray, Oliver noticed a state-of-the-art point-of-sale terminal on the sales counter.
Yes, this store suited Abby.
Anticipation throbbed through him, but he suppressed it. He’d known for months that the day would come when he’d at last be free to claim Abigail Daltry again. But now that he was here at last, he wanted to savor each moment of this long-delayed reunion as much as he wanted to swoop in and whisk her back into his life.
Back into his arms.
Back into his bed.
Oliver stepped forward, still shadowed by the tall shelves, his curiosity piqued by the intensity of the group. The woman at the table held a pack of battered, oversize cards and laid them out in a peculiar pattern on the table. For a moment, he thought she was playing solitaire, then realized the cards weren’t standard playing cards.
He took another step closer, then halted. There, seated in front of the woman with the cards, was Abby. He took a deep breath, fighting for control, and found himself listening with unexpected interest to the other woman’s explanation.
The reader spoke quickly. “…The ninth card reveals your hopes and fears.” A practiced flick of her fingers flipped the card face up. Her face drained of color.
Abby leaned forward just as he was about to move. “What’s wrong?”
The reader looked Abby straight in the eye and her voice took on an ominous note. “Your reading is filled with warnings of a deceiver, a man who is not who he claims, not who you think he is. Beware this man.” With a sure movement but keeping her eyes on Abby, she tapped the last card. “This card shows the final outcome. It reveals the answer to the struggles you face.”
“Turn it over,” Abby said.
The reader hesitated for a moment, then turned up the card. “The Magician,” she whispered as she looked up, straight into Oliver’s eyes. “Beware the Magician,” she warned, while holding his gaze with a commanding glare.
Abby must have noticed the new focus of the reader’s attention because she turned and stared at him, too, causing the rest of the ladies to turn. He fell under the microscopic survey of a suddenly hostile audience.
Visibly gathering her composure, Abby stood and gestured toward him in a mock-courteous introduction. “Welcome to the Tarot-A-While Bookstore, Oliver. Ladies, may I present Mr. Oliver Pendragon? You may have heard of him. He’s known as…” Abby faltered under his glare.
Oliver’s voice felt rusty and his words came out harsher than he intended. “Say it.”
Abby glanced again at the reader and at the cards that accused him from the card table. She reached down and lifted the final card in the layout, holding it out in sardonic offering. “The Magician. Oliver’s called the ‘Magician of Wall Street.’”
From: The Magician of Wall Street, by Minta Hall. © 2012. Available from Amazon.com
BarnesAndNoble.com, from EntangledPublishing.com
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