Friday, July 29, 2022

Caper Crush by Kathy Strobos - Book Tour

Caper Crush

A feel-good, opposites-attract, slow burn romantic comedy

Somebody stole my painting! The one I need for the career-defining Vertex Art Exhibit. This upcoming art show is my chance to finally be recognized as an artist—after ten years of waitressing and being asked if I still have that “lovely painting hobby.”

I have mere weeks to find my painting or lose my artist dream forever—but it’s going to mean working with William.

William Haruki Matsumura. Good-looking, if you like the Secret Service type. You know, law-abiding, protector of women and children. That’s all fine, but I can never tell what he’s thinking. Which drives me crazy.

He insists on coming along to do “damage control.” As if “accidentally” wandering into certain areas is “breaking and entering.” I may be an emotional artist, but William shouldn’t dismiss my investigative skills yet.

William is definitely my opposite, and, if there’s one takeaway from my parents’ divorce, it’s that opposites might attract, but it doesn’t last. But detecting with William is kind of fun—and fluttery. I definitely can’t trust these feelings, or can I? However this caper ends, I think this may be more than a crush. 

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Excerpt from Chapter Seven
Background: Miranda’s Uncle Tony calls to tell her that her painting (the one she needs for the Vertex Exhibit) has been stolen—along with the painting he and his partner Takashi planned to sell to buy a second home upstate. They think the theft occurred during their party on Friday night. Miranda rushes over to Uncle Tony’s apartment. William, Takashi’s attractive nephew, is there too. Miranda insists they need to do some investigating, and William says he’s going to help too. Miranda is initially not pleased, but after they spend the day together, interviewing suspects and doing some internet research, they leave Takashi and Tony’s apartment together:

William and I thank Takashi for dinner and leave his apartment. Outside, the rain is pouring down. We open the umbrella borrowed from Takashi. William holds it over both of us as we amble down the block toward my brownstone apartment, trying to keep our distance within the umbrella-prescribed circle.

“You’re getting wet,” I say. “You should hold it over yourself.” I stand closer to William so the umbrella covers more of both of us. Our arms touch. The city smells of wet rain, refreshed and clean, a new beginning.

The red traffic lights shimmer in the downpour. The wheels of passing cars make slapping sounds as they drive through the puddles. We both walk slowly.

“Where do you live?” I ask.

“Tribeca,” he says.

I skirt around a pool of water and bump lightly into William. Our glances meet. We both look away. I concentrate on avoiding puddles.

“Hmm … I don’t think I’m going to sleep tonight.” I sigh. “I have to think about who hates me enough to sabotage my career and my uncle’s dreams.”

“What do you usually do when you can’t sleep?”

“Paint. My art studio is in our living room. But I’m too depressed to paint now. I’m even low on the paint colors I feel. Although at least I’d have a title: Devastated 11 p.m.

“What paint colors do you feel now?”

“Black, indigo, sepia, and Payne’s grey.”

“Those are very different colors and feelings from High Tide 4:30 and Playing Around 1:30.”

I glance at him. “Yes.” A frisson of awareness skitters through me—of him, so close.

He reaches out his hand, then pulls back. “I’ll pick you up tomorrow.”

“Are you sure you can take off?”

“That’s the benefit of running my own business,” he says. “I’m the boss.”

I’m stuck with him. My heart doesn’t sink at the thought.

We reach the door to my building. Neither of us says anything. The wind rustles the tree branches above, and some loud splats hit our umbrella cover. I should go. I wave goodbye and enter my building.

Tessa is asleep. I wash my hands off in our small kitchen. Some brushes dry in a glass jam jar by the sink. That walk with William was … fluttery. I shake my head and open up my laptop to look for more art show possibilities.


The doorbell rings. The video camera monitor of the foyer shows William standing outside. I run down the stairs and open the front door.

The torchiere by our front door casts a warm circle of light. The smell of light rain and fresh laundry from the dryer that vents out the front of our building fills the air.

“Did you forget something?” I ask.

“No, I just popped by an art store and bought you some paints.” He hands me a bag.

I stare at him in shock.

He quirks an eyebrow.

“Thank you,” I manage to say.

“I have a feeling that a well-rested Miranda will be a better Watson.”

“Watson? Hey, I thought I was Sherlock.”

He smiles slightly. “We’ll see. See you tomorrow.”

He turns and leaves. I stand there holding a paper bag of paints, smiling.

Author Bio –

Kathy Strobos is a writer living in New York City with her husband and two children, amid a growing collection of books, toys and dollhouses. She grew up in New York City and graduated from Stuyvesant High School, Harvard-Radcliffe University magna cum laude, and Columbia Law School. She spent two semesters abroad at the Universiteit van Amsterdam. She previously worked as a lawyer. She left law to pursue her dream of writing fiction full-time and getting in shape. She is the author of Partner Pursuit, Is This for Real?, A Scavenger Hunt for Hearts, and Caper Crush. She is still working on getting in shape.

Social Media Links –

Twitter: @kathystrobos

Instagram: kathystroboswriter

Facebook: @kathystrobosRewrites


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