Excerpt: 'Matters of the Heart'

Matters of the Heart

In Danielle Steel's latest novel, "Matters of the Heart," Hope Dunne is known as one of the world's best photographers and National Book Award winner Finn O'Neill wants her to do the cover for his upcoming book. The two are only in London a few days, but Hope can't help but fall for Finn. He urges her to come stay at his family home in Ireland. That's where she discovers that Finn is not all that he seems.

Hope wrestles with the fact that he's a sociopathic liar after she figures out several of his untruths. Not only that, but she could be in danger as the attention Finn pays her turns into obsession.

Read an excerpt below and head to the "GMA" Library for more good reads.

VIDEO: Danielle Steels Matters of the Heart

To learn more about Danielle Steel, go to daniellesteel.net. For more information on Steel's books, click here. And visit Nicktrainafoundation.com for details on Steel's foundation named after her son who lost his life to manic depression.

Chapter One

Hope Dunne made her way through the silently falling snow on Prince Street in SoHo in New York. It was seven o'clock, the shops had just closed, and the usual bustle of commerce was shutting down for the night. She had lived there for two years and she liked it. It was the trendy part of New York, and she found it friendlier than living uptown. SoHo was full of young people, there was always something to see, someone to talk to, a bustle of activity whenever she left her loft, which was her refuge. There were bright lights in all the shops.

It was her least favorite time of year, December, the week before Christmas. As she had for the past several years, she ignored it, and waited for it to pass. For the past two Christmases, she had worked at a homeless shelter. The year before that she had been in India, where the holiday didn't matter. It had been a hard jolt coming back to the States after her time there. Everything seemed so commercial and superficial in comparison.

The time she had spent in India had changed her life, and probably saved it. She had left on the spur of the moment, and been gone for over six months. Reentry into American life had been incredibly hard. Everything she owned was in storage and she had moved from Boston to New York. It didn't really matter to her where she lived, she was a photographer and took her work with her. The photographs she had taken in India and Tibet were currently being shown in a prestigious gallery uptown. Some of her other work was in museums. People compared her work to that of Diane Arbus. She had a fascination with the destitute and devastated. The agony in the eyes of some of her subjects ripped out your soul, just as it had affected hers when she photographed them. Hope's work was greatly respected, but to look at her, nothing about her demeanor suggested that she was famous or important.

Hope had spent her entire life as an observer, a chronicler of the human condition. And in order to do that, she had always said, one had to be able to disappear, to become invisible, so as not to interfere with the mood of the subject. The studies she had done in India and Tibet for the magical time she was there had confirmed it. In many ways, Hope Dunne was an almost invisible person, in other ways, she was enormous, with an inner light and strength that seemed to fill a room.

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