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Sunday, August 21, 2011


The name of this blog hop intrigued me because I live in the South, and if you want sultry summer nights, the South is the place to be.  In mid-summer the scent of roses, gardenia, and mimosa perfume the night while tree frogs, cicadas, and katydids try to out sing each other.  The heat of the day is broken, but you can feel the humidity lying on your skin like a wet sheet.  Before the advent of air conditioning people built sleeping porches so they could take advantage of the coolness at night. 

I used to put my pillow at the bottom of my bed because there was a window there, and I wanted the air on my face.  During the night, it would cool off, and I’d turn around so I could get under the cover.  I was sixteen when we air conditioned our house.

Of course there are other ways of heating up the night...

Here’s an excerpt from Return Engagement which is available at  .  In this excerpt, you’ll find out what happens to my hero and heroine on a sultry, summer night.  The heat of the day is fading, but Richard and Elizabeth can heat the night with the passion they feel for each other.

“Look at the moon, Richard. Have you ever seen anything so big and beautiful? Isn’t it lovely the way it’s reflecting off the water?”

“Yes, but not as lovely as you are.” Richard made a sound of disgust. “That is so trite. You’d think I could do better, but all evening I’ve had trouble saying what I mean.”

Elizabeth laughed. “Maybe it’s because you’re trying too hard, but for the record, I think you’re doing just fine.” She shivered and hunched her shoulders as she hugged herself. “That wind is cold.”

Richard immediately removed his jacket and handed it to her. “Here, put this on.”

“Won’t you be cold?”

“I’m fine. I’ve got on long sleeves and that’s enough.” His eyes twinkled in the moonlight. “In fact, I kind of like the idea of you wearing my clothes. Sounds like high school, huh?”

 The chilly wind that blew across the moon-drenched water snatched Elizabeth’s laughter away. “Who cares? Sometimes it’s nice to be as irresponsible as a teenager.”

Richard tugged on her hand. “Let’s sit down and watch the moon awhile.”

Elizabeth willingly sank into the damp sand and cuddled close beside him. My gosh, the man had muscles she hadn’t known even existed! “Richard, about this evening…”

 “Elizabeth, about Alex…”

 “You go first,” Elizabeth urged. Her shoulders marginally relaxed. She wasn’t looking forward to telling him she couldn’t see him again.

“All right, I will.” Richard turned slightly, an almost angry look on his face. “What the hell do you think you’re doing getting yourself engaged to Alex Crawford? It’s obvious to a blind man that you don’t love him. You’ve been teasing me and flirting with me all evening.  You’ve even kissed me.” He stirred up the butterflies in her stomach when he gently caressed her shoulder. “Right now your body language makes me think if I wanted to take this snuggling any further you’d be willing.”

 “Wha…” Elizabeth sputtered.

“You don’t strike me as the type of woman who’d pick a man for a night of sex and then go back to her fiancĂ© like nothing had happened. If that’s true I don’t think you love Alex as much as you think you do. The question is: what are you going to do about it?”

 Elizabeth moaned and hid her face in her hands. Richard expected this surprise meeting to lead to something more than a hot dog on the beach, a casual meeting between two old…friends. I’ve done enough damage for one evening; I’m going home before I cause any more trouble. I’ve betrayed Alex and given Richard hope for a relationship with me when there is no hope.

 She tried to jump up, but Richard grabbed her and held her close. “The wind is cold, and you can think just as well, no better, in my arms.”

 Elizabeth gave up the effort to get away from him. There was no way she could argue with those hard, muscled arms. “Yeah, right. Being in your arms clarifies everything! I’m so confused I don’t know if I’m coming or going,” she cried. “I do love Alex. I do! That’s why I agreed to marry him, but with you I feel like a different person. 

 "I know I shouldn’t have flirted with you and kissed you, but I couldn’t help myself.” Her eyes misted with tears. “I didn’t want to help myself. It’s like it was ten years ago only better because now nobody can accuse me of corrupting a minor. You asked me what I’m going to do, but to tell you the truth, I don’t know. The only thing I’m sure of is that I don’t think I can stand it if you walk away again.” Elizabeth threw her hands over her burning face again. “What kind of woman am I? I haven’t seen you in ten years, yet here I am leading you on and encouraging you to…  What’s wrong with me!”

 Richard jerked her hands away from her face and kissed them. “From my point of view things have finally taken a turn for the better.” Satisfaction oozed from his voice. “You’re willing to admit you don’t want to lose me. It’s taken ten years, but we’re back where we belong: together. Everything I ever felt for you came back the minute you spoke to me.”  His voice lowered and became husky and persuasive. “Don’t tell me you didn’t feel it too.”

 “I…” Elizabeth fell silent. After all, what could she say?

 “Let me help you make up your mind about what you want to do.” Richard pushed her back into the sand and kissed her, a delicate brushing of lips that deepened as hearts caught fire.

To enter the contest for an ecopy of Return Engagement, help me spread the word about Return Engagement.  Tweet about it, mention it on FB, say something about it on your blog, it doesn't matter how you do it as long as you put the word out about the book.   Leave a comment telling me where you promoted.  I NEED YOUR EMAIL ADDRESS TOO.  Good luck!

This is where you can get the best price for the book.  

For more blogs go to

The last picture is re-blogged from


katsrus said...

Hi Elaine. Your book sounds really good. Posted on my FB page(sue brandes).!/sbrandes

Sue B

Elaine Cantrell said...

Thank you so much, Sue.

Leanne109 said...

shared ;)

I would love to win it myself :D


Elaine Cantrell said...

Thank you, Leanne.

chandra said...

Romantic letters

Authors Promoting Authors said...

Great post, Elaine! Loved the excerpt. Wishing you much success with your book.

Heidiwriter said...

Good post. Blog hops are fun! Good luck with your book marketing and writing endeavors.

If you'd like, visit my blog at

Heidi M. Thomas, author of Cowgirl Dreams and Follow the Dream.

Kym said...

Your book looks like a great read ! Id love to win a copy and review it for you, but I am adding it to my TBR list also ..

Wishing you all the best !


Sherry Gloag said...

Enjoyed your post, Elaine :-)

iarvd said...

Commented on FB!

The book sounds really good! Thanks for the chance to win!

Amanda Wimer