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Now You See Her [Anglais] [Poche]

Linda Howard
4.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)
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Description de l'ouvrage

1 juillet 1999
Paris Sweeny is a moderately successful artist whose popularity is surging. Sweeney loves her work and is content with life, until she begins to notice odd changes. The changes are unnoticeable at first, but she can't ignore her dreams - lush, vivid and drenched in vibrant hues - which are influencing her artwork. And she can't deny her growing restlessness... Suddenly, impulsively, Sweeney finds herself unable to resist a night of intense passion with millionaire Richard Worth, estranged husband of her gallery-owner. But the true dangers of her all-consuming urges are about to be revealed where Sweeney least expects it: in her paintings. After a creative frenzy she discovers she has painted a graphic murder scene. And then a shattering, real-life murder mirrors her creation and puts her at the top of the list of suspects.
--Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Relié .

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Extrait

Chapter 1 from Now You See Her

New York City

One Year Later


It was one thing to believe in ghosts, another to actually see them. Sweeney had discovered, though, that the kicker was whether or not she knew the ghost. In the small village of Clayton, New York, where she had lived until almost a year ago, she'd had at least a nodding acquaintance with most of the inhabitants, including the dead ones. In New York City, she didn't know any of them, so she could look past the translucent faces in the crowd and pretend not to see them. Back in Clayton, after she had seen the ghost of Sam Beresford, she had never known when another ghost would stop and speak, and she had never been sharp enough to play it cool and pretend nothing had happened. No, she'd just had to react, and before long people were giving her those looks that said they suspected she was losing her marbles. She had packed up and moved before they began pointing at her on the street.

Yeah, the city was better. Warmer, too. About the time she began seeing the ghosts, her internal heat regulator seemed to go on the fritz, too. She always felt chilled these days, had for the past year. Maybe the cold had started even before she saw little Sam Beresford; she couldn't remember, because who paid attention to things like that? It wasn't exactly something anyone would mark on their calendars: August 29: Felt cold. Yeah, sure.

Sweeney didn't know what had brought the ghosts to mind this bright September morning, but they were the first things she thought of when she woke. That, and the cold, which seemed worse. She got out of bed, hurriedly changed her pajamas for sweats, and went into the kitchen to get that first cup of coffee, thanking God for automatic timers as she went. It was so nice to have the coffee waiting for her when she got up, because she thought she'd probably freeze to death if she had to wait for it to brew.

The first sip warmed her insides on the way down, and she sighed with relief. She actually tasted the second sip, and was going back for the third when the phone rang.

Phones were a necessary nuisance, but a nuisance still. Who the hell would be calling her at -- she checked the clock -- seven-forty-three in the morning? Irritably, she set her cup down and walked over to snag the receiver off the wall.

"Candra here," a warm voice replied to her cautious greeting. "I'm sorry to call you so early, but I don't know your schedule and wanted to be certain I caught you."

"You got me on the first cast," Sweeney replied, her irritation fading. Candra Worth owned the gallery where Sweeney sold her work.

"Beg pardon?"

"Never mind. It's a fishing term. I don't suppose you've ever been fishing?"

"God, no." Like her voice, Candra's laugh was warm and intimate. "The reason I called was to ask if you could be here at about one to meet some potential clients. We were talking at a party last night and they mentioned they're thinking of having their portraits done. I immediately thought of you, of course. Mrs. McMillan wanted to come by the gallery to look at a particular piece I've just gotten in, so I thought it would be convenient for them to meet you while they're here."

"I'll be there," Sweeney promised, though she had looked forward to a day of uninterrupted work.

"Good. See you then."

Sweeney shivered as she hung up and hurried back to her coffee. She didn't like meeting prospective clients, but she did like doing portraits -- and she needed the work. About the time she had started seeing ghosts, her work had gone to hell in a handbasket. The trademark delicacy of her landscapes and still life studies had given way to an uncharacteristic boisterousness, and she didn't like it. Her colors had always been transparent, as if they were watercolors instead of oils, but now, no matter how hard she tried, she found herself gravitating toward deep, passionate, unrealistic shades. She hadn't carried anything to Candra's gallery in months, and though her old pieces were still selling, there couldn't be many left.

She owed it to Candra to take the job, if the couple liked her work. Sweeney was aware that she was not now and probably would never be a hot commodity, because her art was considered too traditional, but nevertheless Candra had always steered her way those customers who preferred the traditional approach, thereby providing Sweeney with a fairly steady, moderately lucrative income. Above that, last year when Sweeney had announced her intention of leaving Clayton, it was Candra who had scouted out this apartment for her.

Not that New York City would have been Sweeney's first choice; she had been thinking of someplace warmer. Of course, New York was warmer than Clayton, which sat on the St. Lawrence River, just east of Lake Ontario, and every winter was the recipient of lake-effect snows. New York City was coastal; it snowed during the winter, but not as often and not as much, and the temperatures were more moderate. Not moderate enough; Sweeney had been thinking more along the lines of Miami, but Candra had talked her into coming to the city and Sweeney didn't regret it. There was always something going on, which provided her with plenty of distraction whenever she thought she was going to scream from frustration.

Above all, New York was big enough that she didn't know any of the dead people, didn't feel compelled by good manners to acknowledge them. The city also provided a steady supply of faces -- live ones. She loved faces, loved studying them, which was why her portrait work was steadily increasing -- thank God, because otherwise her bank account would have been in serious trouble, instead of just in trouble.

The city suited her, for now, and by New York standards the rent was reasonable. Candra had known about the apartment because her husband, Richard Worth, owned the building. He was some sort of Wall Street whiz, a self-made market millionaire; Sweeney had met him a couple of times, and tried to stay as far away from him as possible. He had an interesting but intimidating face, and she thought he must be the type of man who steamrollered over everyone in his path. She made it a point not to be in his way.

The neighborhood wasn't the best, nor was the building, but the apartment was a corner one, with huge windows. She could happily have lived in a barn, if it had as good a light -- and central heat.

The coffee had stopped her shivering. She always felt a little chilled now, but mornings were the worst. She would have gone to a doctor, but whenever she imagined talking to someone about what as going on, her common sense stopped her. "About a year ago I started seeing ghosts, Doctor, and that's when I got cold. Oh, by the way, traffic signals turn green whenever I approach, too. And my plants bloom out of season. So what's wrong with me?" Sure. Not in this lifetime. She'd been pointed at enough when she was a kid. Being an artist was uncommon enough; she wasn't about to let herself be labeled as wacko, too.

The past year had been trying for more reasons than just seeing ghosts. Sweeney resisted change with a stubborn determination that was no less unyielding for its lack of ferocity. She wasn't ferocious about anything but painting. Still, over the years those who knew her well had learned how tenacious she was. She liked routine, liked her life to have an even tenor. She could get along just fine without drama, despair, and excitement, having had a surfeit of it in her childhood. For her, sameness and normality equaled security. But how could she feel secure when she had changed, when she knew she was no longer normal, even if she had managed to hide it from the rest of the world? And now she seemed to have lost her direction, if not her talent; but what good was talent if she didn't know what she was doing with it?

She turned on the television to keep her company while she rustled up breakfast, though cereal didn't require much rustling. She ate the corn flakes dry, without milk, because the milk was cold and she had just gotten rid of the chill, so she wasn't eager to reacquire it. As she ate, the sexy Diet Coke commercial came on, and she paused, spoon halfway to her mouth, eyes widening as her lips formed a silent "wow."

By the time the commercial ended, she felt almost sweaty. Maybe watching more television ads was the key to feeling warm.

After putting in several hours of work in the studio, Sweeney realized it was almost one o'clock and she had to get ready to go over to the gallery. She hated dressing up, but she found herself reaching for a skirt and top instead of her usual jeans and sweatshirt. A flash of scarlet caught her eye, and she slid clothes hangers to the side to extract a red sweater she had never worn that someone had given her for Christmas several years before. The tags were still on it. Studying the bright, rich color, she decided that was just what she wanted today.

She supposed she should take some pains with her hair, too. Standing in front of the mirror, she frowned. She had been blessed, or cursed, with very curly, very unruly hair, and she kept it longer than shoulder length because the weight helped hold it down. Her options were limited; she could pull it back and look like a schoolgirl, try to pin it up and hope she didn't end up with stray curls sticking out like corkscrews, or leave it loose. She opted for loose; the possibility of humiliation was less.

She took a comb and tidied the more unruly parts. When she was little, she had hated her hair. She had inherited the wild curls from her mother, only her mother had gloried in having an untamable mane of hair, bringing even more attention to it by coloring it every shade of red imaginable. She had wanted to color Sweeney's hair, too, but even as a child Sweeney had clung to the small bits of normalcy in her life. Her hair was brown, and she was going to keep it brown. Not red, not black, not platinum. Brown. The color was ordinary, even if the cu... --Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Relié .

Biographie de l'auteur

Linda Howard is the award-winning author of seven New York Times bestsellers, including ALL THE QUEENS MEN, NOW YOU SEE HER and KILL AND TELL. She lives in Alabama with her husband and two golden retrievers. --Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Relié .

Détails sur le produit

  • Poche: 362 pages
  • Editeur : Simon & Schuster; Édition : Reissue (1 juillet 1999)
  • Langue : Anglais
  • ISBN-10: 0671034057
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671034054
  • Dimensions du produit: 17,2 x 10,7 x 2,5 cm
  • Moyenne des commentaires client : 4.0 étoiles sur 5  Voir tous les commentaires (1 commentaire client)
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: 109.834 en Livres anglais et étrangers (Voir les 100 premiers en Livres anglais et étrangers)
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4.0 étoiles sur 5 un des meilleurs 17 août 2009
Par Anne
Format:Poche|Achat authentifié par Amazon
Un melange de policier avec un soupçon de science fiction, l'histoire est bien menée et l'on sent l'étau qui se resserre sur les héros. J'ai passé un très bon moment avec ce livre.
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Amazon.com: 4.0 étoiles sur 5  181 commentaires
15 internautes sur 15 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Great Twist on Romantic/Suspense! 4 1/2 stars! 19 novembre 2001
Par Tracy Talley - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Poche
This is my second book from this author and I am still impressed by her layered plots and how she twists them so much that you really are left wondering who the killer is. Usually you guess the killer or badguy early on, but now here. Her characters are filled with life and seem so real you probably would know them had they been your friends! This wasn't as frightening as my first one by her called "Mr. Perfect," but it was still great!
A very talented painter named Sweeney has achieved what few do at her age of 31. She has achieved renown success in the art field and has made herself a comfortable sum along the way. She sells and displays her work at the upscale New York City gallery with her only friend and gallery director. Her life couldn't be better, or could it?
What she doesn't tell her friend is that she seems to mysteriously wake in the wee hours of the morning and paints vivid and horrifying scenes of mayhem and murder without remembering! The latest, a disturbing and gruesome murder scene that happens right after she paints scares her into revealing it to a trusted friend and lover. The information gets to the police investigating the murder and she is thrust into the limelight as the prime suspect!
How did she know the murder before it happened? Why was she always seeing things no one else could see? Can Sweeney save herself before the real killer tries to silence her for good? Breathtaking! Ms. Howard has a knack for making your skin crawl with the suspense and terror the characters feel! The romance is very real too and mixes well with the story unlike a lot of suspense/romance books. Riveting, sexy and creepy! A sure keeper!
Tracy Talley~@
13 internautes sur 13 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Read it for the romance, not the suspense 6 octobre 2000
Par AriesPA - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Poche|Achat authentifié par Amazon
This is the second Linda Howard book I've read in as many days, and again, I am impressed with the chemistry she is able to generate between her main characters. It would have been very easy to make Sweeney into a helpless waif who was not able to cope with the psychic phenomena she was witnessing, and to make Richard a one dimensional knight to the rescue of a damsel in distress. Instead, Sweeney is an independent character who wants to deal with the disturbing violent visions she gets on her own. Richard sees himself as a knight, but is attracted to Sweeney's beauty and spirit, not her temporary helplessness. The evolving relationship between Sweeney and Richard proceeds quickly and is described in erotic detail by Linda Howard. The most suspense in the novel resolves around Sweeney's and Richard's relationship: Will he get his divorce from the manipulative Candra? Will he and Sweeney be able to wait until the divorce before they consummate their relationship? These questions are much more intriguing than the questions that surround the so called mystery of Sweeney's visions. She not only sees dead people, she paints them too. When one of Sweeney's visions hits close to home, it is fairly obvious how the plot will be resolved. Linda Howard apparently has no need for red herrings, so the mystery of "Now You See Her" is flat, if not non-existent. However, the relationship between Sweeney and Richard is the real reason to read this book because their growing attraction for each is what drives the plot.
8 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
4.0 étoiles sur 5 Could have been great 6 mai 2004
Par C. Glover - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Poche
About three fourths of the way through this book I realized it was not going to end well. There was just too much going on for everything to be tied up by page 325. Sure enough, I felt someone had torn the last 50 pages out of my copy. Of course, if it had not been a good story I would not have cared. But it was a good story, and different. I was caught up in it. I wanted all the ends tied up, all the mysteries solved. Unfortunately, the epilogue added nothing to the story. Was there a scandal? What happened to the senator? Most of all, what happened to Sweeney's gift? Was it lasting, could she help people before they died? Or was her gift to help solve the crime? Since she could see and talk to dead people why didn't she ask them why they were ghosts? What happened to her health? And what is the meaning of the title? I wanted more from the epilogue. Maybe Linda H. will revisit Sweeney in the future. P.S. I liked the romance between Sweeney and Richard. (...)
13 internautes sur 15 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 Beautifully Chilling, Artfully Sensual 21 septembre 1998
Par Un client - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
Yes, the puns are intended. An odd woman, Sweeny. She sees ghosts and goes into shock every time she walks in her sleep to paint pictures of the dead.
Linda's characters will make you put your coat on one minute, but read on, and you'll be fanning yourself from the heat you feel for Richard. He can warm up my chilblains any day.
You can't put this one down, but as always, Linda writes a page turner with characters so real you feel the hero nibbling on your ear. I highly recommend this to anyone who loves romantic suspense and doesn't pale at four-letter words.
Why some readers insist on comparing this book to any other is beyond me. Each book an author writes stands alone and should be viewed as such. One may like a book better than another, but diversity in an author's writing is the most desirable trait she can have aside from enormous talent. I always look forward to every Linda Howard book. They're all great reads, and they weren't stamped out of a cookie cutter.
8 internautes sur 9 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Somewhat disapointing 1 janvier 2000
Par Bonnie Gilbert - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Poche
Now You See Her is only my second book by Linda Howard, my first being Dream Man. I felt this book didn't have good characters and I didn't really feel for them.
A year ago, Sweeny began seeing strange things, dead people. Also, other strange things began happening, lights would turn green all the time, she would know the answers to Jeapardy before the questions was asked. Just strange things.
Then recently, Sweeny would wake up in the middle of the night and "sleep paint". In the morning she'd wake up to find she had painted a murder scene. The scary thing was, she knew these people. One day she woke up to find that she painted shoes only, in order to find out who was murdered she had to complete the painting.
I found this book to be lacking (see, I can't even figure out what to write in a review for it!). The love story between Sweeny and Richard seemed thrown together just to have a love story. Although not terribly bad, I'd pass on this one
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