Francesca Thayer sat at her desk until the figures started to blur before her eyes. She had been over them a thousand times in the past two months—and had just spent the entire weekend tryingto crunch numbers. They always came out the same. It was three o’clock in the morning and her long wavy blond hair was a tangled mess as she unconsciously ran her hands through it again. She was trying to save her business and her house, and so far she hadn’t been able to come up with a solution. Her stomach turned over as she thought of losing both.
She and Todd had started the business together four years ago. They’d opened an art gallery in New York’s West Village where they specialized in showing the work of emerging artists at extremely reasonable prices. She had a deep commitment to the artists she represented. Her experience in the art world had been extensive, although Todd had none at all. Before that, she had run two other galleries, one uptown after she graduated, and the other in Tribeca. But this gallery that they had started together was her dream. She had a degree in fine arts, her father was a well- known artist who had become very successful in recent years, and the gallery she shared with Todd had gotten excellent reviews. Todd was an avid collector of contemporary work, and he thought that helping her start the gallery would be fun. At the time, Todd was tired of his own career on Wall Street as an attorney. He had a considerable amount of money saved and figured he could coast for a few years. The business plan he had developed for them showed them making money within three years. He hadn’t counted on Francesca’s passion for less expensive work by entirely unknown artists, helping them whenever possible, nor had he realized that her main goal was showcasing the work, but not necessarily making a lot of money at it. Her hunger for financial success was far more limited than his. She was as much a patron of the arts as a gallerist. Todd was in it to make money. He thought it would be exciting and a welcome change of career for him after years of doing tax and estate work for an important law firm. But now he said he was tired of listening to their bleeding- heart artists, watching his nest egg dwindle to next to nothing, and being poor. As far as Todd was concerned, this was no longer fun. He was forty years old, and wanted to make real money again. When he talked to her about it he had already lined up a job at a Wall Street firm. They were promising him a partnership within a year. As far as selling art was concerned, he was done.
Francesca wanted to stick with it and make the gallery a success, whatever it took. And unlike Todd, she didn’t mind being broke.
But in the past year, their relationship had begun to unravel, which made their business even less appealing to him. They argued about everything, what they did, who they saw, what to do about the gallery.
Excerpted from 44 Charles Street (Limited Edition) by Danielle Steel. Copyright © 2011 by Danielle Steel. Excerpted by permission of Delacorte Press, a division of Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
One of the world’s most popular authors, Danielle Steel always puts her heart and soul into everything she writes. And 44 Charles Street is her most luminous novel yet.
At 35, Francesca Thayer finds herself at loose ends when her boyfriend wants out of their relationship—and responsibility for their house on 44 Charles Street in Manhattan’s West Village. That’s when Francesca, who owns an art gallery nearby, makes a decision that will change her life: she decides to take in boarders. First to sign on is Eileen, a young teacher obsessed with online dating. Marya, a widow and celebrated chef is followed by Chris, a divorced father whose adorable 7-year-old son soon becomes the apple of everyone’s eye—when he’s not with his difficult mother.
At first, the group remains respectful of each other’s privacy. But soon they are drawn into each other’s lives. Marya’s longtime “friendship” with another famous chef wins everyone’s approval, while Francesca finds herself comforting Chris more and more as he tries to win custody of his son. But it is Eileen’s risky dating that bonds the makeshift family in ways they never imagined as 44 Charles Street heads toward its startling climax.
Hardcover Book : 336 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Press/Division of Random Hous ( April 05, 2011 )
Item #: 13-194866
Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.25 x 0.76inches
Product Weight: 12.0 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Danielle Steel is new and exciting with this book!
It seems that Danielle Steel is back to writing like she did years ago. I have all her books and the last few have not been very good. But this one makes up for that. Excellant book.