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Sunday, October 30, 2011

Welcome Dana Littlejohn

Hello and welcome to Dana Littlejohn's blog tour.  Dana was born and raised in Brooklyn, NY, but has called Indianapolis, IN her home for over 10 years. Her love for writing started as a young girl in junior high school where she discovered her first romance novel. Falling in love with love she started writing her own ongoing story in weekly installments to entertain her friends as they passed it around the lunch room.

 When she became an adult she put her love for writing on hold to do the start a family, but in 2003 with encouragement from her husband she picked up her pen again. This time she has no intention on putting it down. To date she has written 3 full length novels, 11 novellas, 36 short stories and has had her stories in 3 anthologies under her own name and a pseudo for another genre. Her do-do list grows daily and the ideas flow freely. Keep an eye out for what she has coming next.

1.     Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your work?
Where to start, where to start… Well, people ask me all the time if Dana Littlejohn is my real name or a pseudo. Let me go on record and yes. It is my real name. I work a nine to five and my pay check comes in that name. LOL I cannot claim it though because my husband shared it with me. I have four children all over eighteen and a wonderful husband who loves my crazy edge that leads me to the stories I write. I write African American and interracial romances. They have crossed over and merged several genres, but all are erotic.
2.     I use my own name too.  When writing a new book, how do you decide on a theme, genre, or topic?
Anything can spark a new idea for a book for me. A picture, a comment, a conversation…anything and anything has! When my son returned from the air force I asked him what life was like behind the wings? He laughed and said, you don’t have a life when you’re enlisted only the officers do. That answered sparked the idea to one of my full length novels, Behind the Wings.
3.     What do you think makes a book a page turner?
I think a great story with engaging characters make a great a story, but with that being said the idea of ‘engaging’ is different for everyone. I think if a reader can connect to the characters in some way, whether they see themselves in the character themselves or the situation, they become engaged.
4.     How many WIP do you have going?
When I saw this question I drew a total blank. LOL I really didn’t know. I’m usually working on at least two stories at once sometimes three. It just depends on who is talking the loudest to get their story told that day. Most times I finish them back to back t submit them and usually they are totally different and are going to different houses.
5.     At the moment I have three going.  What other authors if any have influenced your writing?
I don’t get the chance to read as much as I liked to, but when I do I really like Bertrice Small. Her characters are strong independent woman with minds of their own. They get the same kind of men who appreciate them as is and absolutely adore them. I love that!
6.     Would you share your links with us?
Sure! My website:  my blog:  you guy find me on twitter and Facebook by authordanalittlejohn
7.     We’d love to read an excerpt.  Don’t forget to give us a buy link.
This excerpt comes from my latest release Releasing the Baggage. It is available at Secret Cravings Publishing. Here is the blurb.
Jerri Ivory was over divorce cases, but when your boss asks you to do him a favor... During the important case, her boss is killed and she becomes a suspect all while she is trying to get to know Felix, a man her friend Linda hooked her up with. With all the chaos and mayhem going on in her life, can Felix slow her down long enough to show her they were meant to be? 
Jerri smiled and relaxed in her chair. “This is nice restaurant. I’ve never been here before. Have you?”
“No. I had no clue where we should go, so I Googled for a good place for a first date. This place came up with four stars for ambience and four stars for food.”
“That’s great. We can experience it together.” The waitress came to take their order. Jerri waited for her to leave before continuing their conversation. “So, you said you haven’t been in a relationship in a long time. Does that mean you haven’t dated since your divorce?”
“Yes, but what I meant was I haven’t had a relationship since before my wife, but, that is also true. I haven’t dated since the divorce either.”
“Oh. Are you and your wife still friends?”
“I wouldn’t go as far as saying friends, but I wouldn’t call her my enemy.”
“So, what happened . . . if you don’t mind me asking?”
He hesitated.
“If you don’t want to talk about it, I completely understand,” she rushed out. “In fact, forget I even brought it up. God, I suck at this. I’m sorry. That’s not really first-date conversation, is it? I don’t know what I was—”
Felix waved his hand. “No, no, it’s okay. I was actually just wondering myself what happened.”
The conversation paused when their food was delivered.
“I guess what really happened was we just grew apart. That’s the only thing I can think of. I didn’t know it at the time, but we had different agendas and were on different paths from the start. She didn’t want to do the work it takes to bridge the gaps.”
“So, it was all her fault, huh?” she asked skeptically.
“No, I’m not saying that at all. It’s never one person’s fault when two people are involved in a relationship.”
“So, you believe a marriage is a fifty-fifty thing?”
“Actually, I think it’s more like one hundred- one hundred. Each person should bring one hundred percent into their marriage, not fifty percent.”
Jerri sat quietly eating for a while contemplating his words. “Hmm, you sound like you didn’t want the divorce, Felix,” she finally asked.
“I didn’t.”
Her head snapped up. “You didn’t?”
“No, I don’t think you get married to get divorced. It’s supposed to be ‘until death do you part.’ I was willing to work on it, but she wanted out.”
She nodded and pushed her plate back. “Do you still love her?” She reached for her glass and, not realizing it was empty, brought it to her lips.
He chuckled at the look on her face when she realized it was empty and refilled it for her. “No, I don’t. I don’t think I had for a long time before she asked for the divorce.”
Jerri sipped her drink. “So, I guess that kind of makes you a little bitter toward the whole marriage thing, huh?”
He shook his head. “Absolutely not. She hasn’t poisoned me toward getting married again at all. I still think it’s a beautiful thing. As long as it’s with the right person,” he added. “She obviously was not the right person for me, and I wasn’t for her.”
“I’ve been privy to a lot of divorces—some decent, most not—and the one thing all those people have in common is none of them took their marriage seriously anymore.” She shrugged. “I don’t know, the whole thing has kind of soured me a little to the whole idea.”
Felix reached across the table and covered her hand with his. “I still take it seriously. Perhaps all you need is some positive relationships to combat some of that negativity you’ve been exposed to.”
Over the candlelight, their eyes met in a hypnotic trance. The same feeling had come over her when he held her as they danced that slow, sexy salsa dance. Something deep within the depths of those sultry honey colored eyes called to her. Jerri felt like she was falling, losing herself within those sensual golden pools. She tried to speak, but her mouth and her brain had momentarily lost disconnection. Her body was leaning across to him and he was doing the same. The sudden clank of the plates crashing into each other as the waitress came to remove the dishes brought her back to reality, making her aware of her surroundings. She chuckled away her embarrassment and sat back in her chair. 
“So, Felix, are you always this charming or is this a ploy to get into my panties?” she asked playfully.
His blush was instant as he tried to laugh it away. “Charming? No, I’m just being me, but if you find that charming, then I’ll take whatever extras come with it.”
“I don’t know, Felix, you might not want to get into my panties,” Jerri said jokingly. “To push past the coohie cobwebs would be a hell of a workout, even for someone in as great a shape as you are.”
Confusion settled on his handsome features as he absorbed what she said, and then he burst into fits of laughter. “I don’t think I’ve heard that particular metaphor for abstinence before.”
Jerri nodded and picked up her glass again. “Well, unfortunately my friends keep me updated on such things.”
“Well, I think we’re in the same boat, then, Jerri. It’s been a long time since I had sex, too, years, in fact.”
“So, I guess that makes us both second-time virgins, huh? It’ll be like starting all over again if we ever hooked up.”
“Yeah, I guess it would be.”
Their eyes met over the candlelight again. An entire conversation passed between them without a single word being said aloud. Each one understood exactly what the other wanted and needed. Felix was the first to break the heavy, sexually charged silence.
“Check, please!”

Folks, Dana is giving away a promotional: t-shirt, a key chain, an ink pen and a baseball style hat to randomly drawn commenters during the tour (US and Canada only please). Follow her book tour and comment often for a chance to win. To follow the tour go to

Six Sentence Sunday

This scene is from my upcoming release The Sentence.  The scene is between my hero and heroine.
“Look above your head,” he said.

Rachel looked up and saw a sprig of mistletoe tied to a ceiling fan with a long piece of red yarn. 

“That’s mistletoe, Rachel.”

“So?  I imagine the high school kids tied it there so they could steal kisses.”

When Clint took another step toward her, Rachel’s heart started to pound. 

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Sweet Saturday Sample

This sample comes from The Best Selling Toy Of The Season.  Sometimes a man has to take drastic measures to break through the heroine's defenses.  The book is available at Melange Books.

The girls strolled across the parking lot to Mandy’s car, but before Mandy could unlock the door, a Lexus wheeled into the parking lot and screeched to a stop beside them. The door swung open and Tommy Price jumped out.

“Hi, Mandy. I’m kidnapping Nikki so don’t worry about her. I’ll return her when she agrees to marry me.”
Mandy’s mouth fell open and she couldn’t say a word, but for the first time in weeks, Nikki found her tongue. “You are certainly not kidnapping me! What makes you think I’d let you do a thing like that?
I told you we don’t have a future together, and I want you to accept it.  Don’t be coming around causing trouble for me. I want to get over you, but how can I if you show up and bother me? Anyway, I’m a mother. I’ve got Michael and Teddy to think about. Just who do you think would take care of them if you kidnapped me?”
“Dan would. Are you through?”
“Yes, but I’m not going anywhere with you.”
“That’s why they call it kidnapping,” Tommy explained. “It’s because whether you want to or not, you’re coming with me.”
Nikki spluttered and protested, but Tommy paid no attention at all. He put one arm around her shoulders and the other behind her knees and scooped her into his arms. Nikki struggled mightily to free herself, but she might as well have tried to move a tree.
“You may as well be still, Nikki. I work out, you know.”
He stuffed Nikki into the front seat of the Lexus and crawled in behind her. “Bye, Mandy,” he yelled, and before Nikki could try to unlock the door, the Lexus had left the parking lot.
In case you were worried about it, Nikki's cousin is in on this, and Nikki is thrilled to see Tommy.  Her protest is all for show.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Fashionista Friday: Western Wear

·        Okay, I promise this is the last cowgirl post, but I found so many cute things when I was doing last week’s post that I need just one more day to show you everything.  To begin, I’m in love with turquoise so this purse is unbelievably wonderful.  Just look at it.  It’s made of hand tooled leather with turquoise trim and inlay.  It has floral conchos with bolo tie accents.  Notice the silver spot accents?  Buy it at  Cavenders for $220. 

And boy, howdy, look at this jacket.  Oh my!  It’s made of lamb and trimmed with red fox fur.  Only $1399.99 at Cavender's.
Last, I love these earrings.  They’re by Effie Calavaza if that means anything to you.  She’s one of the most popular Native America jewelry artists.  My son gave me this pair for Christmas.  Buy them at Silver Tribe for $72.  This website tells you about Effie Calavaza too. 

Monday, October 24, 2011

Blog Hop Winner

I wish you all could win, but the name that my grandson pulled out of the hat was Laura.  Laura, congratulations.  I'll get your prize to you.  Thanks to everyone for entering.  I'll be back next month in the November hop so check back with me then.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Sweet Saturday Sample

This excerpt comes from my Melange Christmas release The Best Selling Toy of the Season which is available at Melange Books.  At one time or the other I've felt pretty much the same way my heroine does, but the knock on her door is literally going to change her life forever.

Nikki sank wearily onto her sofa the following evening and propped her feet on the scarred coffee table in front of her. “Just shoot me now, and put me out of my misery,” she muttered.

Her two small sons stood dejectedly in front of her. “We’re sorry, Mama. We didn’t mean to do it,” Teddy apologized.

When you had two lively boys in the family you expected things to happen, but after a hard day at work this mess had almost undone her. The family Christmas tree lay on its side on the floor, and the water in the reservoir of the tree stand had soaked the few colorful packages nestled under the tree. “Be careful where you step,” she tiredly warned the boys. “Most of the ornaments are broken, and you’ll get glass in your feet.”

As if dealing with this catastrophe didn’t give her enough to do, she heard someone knock loudly on the front door of the trailer. With an enormous sigh, Nikki dragged herself from the sofa. Why now?
She didn’t want company tonight. “You kids sit right here on the sofa. Don’t you even think of moving.”

She jerked the door open, and her jaw dropped. A surprise visit from Rudolph or maybe a Christmas elf wouldn’t have surprised her any more. “You! You’ve got a nerve coming here after you ruined my
things. Who gave you this address? What do you want?”

Friday, October 21, 2011

Fashionista Friday: I Always Wanted to be a Cowgirl

I did want to be a little cowgirl!  I had a red and black cowgirl outfit, boots, a white handled pistol and holster, and a rocking horse which I rode to death.  So, I still have a soft spot in my heart for a cowgirl.  What do you think of this jacket?  I think a real cowgirl would love it.  It's made of lamb suede and has paisley out out accents.  You can buy it at Maverick Western Wear for $373.00.  I had intended to look for jeans elsewhere, but I really do like the ones shown with the jacket.  Buy them at Maverick Western Wear for $95.00.

A cowgirl has to have boots too.  I love both of these pairs.  I suppose with the jeans the simple pair would be best, but I adore the flowers on the other pair.  They come from Maverick Western Wear too.
The flowered pair are $569, and the plain pair is $289.99.


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Spook-a-licious: Where Books Devour You: Blog Hop Tour Oct. 17-24

1) HAVE FUN!!!


3) THIS TOUR STARTS: Monday, October 17, at Midnight (Arizona Time)
THIS TOUR ENDS: Monday, October 24, at Midnight (Arizona Time)
Winners will be drawn and posted October 25th! ***




***Authors & Book Pages have full discretion to choose an alternate winner in the event any winner fails to claim their prize(s) within 72 hours of their name being posted or after notification of win, whichever comes first. Anyone who participates in this blog hop tour is subject to these rules***
And now for some fun!

Do you believe in ghosts?  Lots of people do.  Look at the 1959 photo below.  Mabel Chinnery had just spent the day at the cemetery visiting her mother’s grave. To finish off a roll of film she snapped a picture of her husband who was seated in the front seat of the car waiting on her.  She had the pictures developed and I’m betting her skin started to crawl.  In one of the pictures her dead mother is sitting in the back seat of the car.  Shudder.  Picture and story at

This picture was taken in 1967 at Gettysburg and shows a Civil War soldier at Devil’s Den.  (Picture from Secret 

This picture absolutely gives me the willies!  This is a World War I English squadron attached to the HMS Daedalus training facility.  After the group had its picture made, they spotted someone who shouldn’t be there.  Two days before the picture was taken, Freddy Jackson had been killed by a flying propeller.  They’d had his funeral the very day the photo was taken.  See the man behind the guy in the closeup?  Everyone identified him as Freddy Jackson.

Okay, enough about ghosts.  Would you like to win something to read?  I’m giving away a PDF copy of A New Dream by yours truly.  To win, follow my blog and leave a comment telling me you did so.  If you already follow, leave a comment and say so.  If you’d like to double your chances of winning, tell someone else about me.  Post something about me on FB, your blog, at Goodreads, etc.  Then leave a comment telling me where you posted.  That’s it! 

If you want to go back to the main page click here.

Six Sentence Sunday

In this excerpt from Return Engagement, my hero warms his father not to interfere in his relationship with my heroine.  Return Engagement is available at Whiskey Creek Press.

This won’t help your career."

"Career be damned. I want her more. Dad, listen to me; if you do anything at all to interfere with us, your plans for me are over. Do I make myself perfectly clear?"

"Perfectly," answered the senator, but silently he added, What you don’t know won’t hurt you.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Sweet Saturday Sample

In this sample, my hero and heroine are caught together on the morning after.  Return Engagement is available at Whiskey Creek Press.

Her jaw dropped the moment she flung open the door. There, in the flesh, stood her mother and, ohmigosh, Alex Crawford! Oh no! Oh no! What were they doing here? What did they want?

"Mother, Alex! What are you doing here at this time of the morning? Why didn’t you call first?" she demanded.

Mrs. Lane, a larger, older version of her daughter, rolled her eyes at Elizabeth. "Since when does your mother and your fiancĂ© need an invitation to visit you? You and Alex were sup-posed to have dinner with me last night, remember? I was worried about you. Why didn’t you call and tell us you couldn’t make it? Did your shoot last longer than you thought?"

Alex stepped around Mrs. Lane and entered the house. Elizabeth tensed when he caressed her shoulder through the thin fabric of her robe and placed a light kiss on her lips. Thank God Richard didn’t see that. He’s jealous enough as it is. I don’t want to think what he might say or do if he saw Alex touch me. She shivered. It wouldn’t be pretty, she knew that.

"Don’t scold her," Alex sweetly admonished Mrs. Lane. "She looks tired this morning. Did you have a bad day yesterday, sweetheart?" Elizabeth steeled herself not to jerk away from him when he fondled the sash on her robe. If Richard came in…

"Oh, I had a very tiring day," she agreed. Well, I told the truth this time. All of yesterday’s emotional upheaval was exhausting to say the least.

Mrs. Lane sniffed. "Do I smell coffee?"

Elizabeth’s thoughts raced. Kind and generous to a fault, Alex deserved to hear her news in private. She had to make him and her mother leave until she got Richard out of here. He probably wouldn’t want to go so…

She had waited too long. The bedroom door opened with a click that sounded abnormally loud in her ears. "Elizabeth? Do you know where my shirt is? I can’t find it."

All eyes in the room swung to Elizabeth whose heart had started to pound so loudly she heard the blood roaring in her ears. She wanted to rush across the room and shove him back into the bedroom, to keep her secret hidden, but of course she couldn’t do that. "It’s on the back of the sofa."

Richard stopped short as he came into the living room. His hair still dripped from his shower while several drops of  water streaked down his bare chest. When he saw the two silent, disapproving guests, a faint flush spread across his cheekbones, but Senator Lovinggood had trained him well; he crossed the room and pulled on his shirt as if nothing out of the ordinary was happening.

What awful timing! Oh, why couldn’t he have waited for ten more minutes? He inclined his head to her mother who looked as if she’d rather shoot him than talk to him.

"Mrs. Lane, how are you?" he asked. "Do you remember me?"

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Fashionista Friday: Yellow's Hot

Yellow is one of the hot colors this fall, and I love it.  It makes sunshine even on gloomy days and makes me feel good to look at it, but, I don’t look super great in yellow.  Still, if I want to wear a touch of yellow I can.  Why not use it as an accent color?  Take this black and white outfit for example.  It’s available at

Let’s add some yellow pumps.  Like them?  You can get them at for 122.30

Want a purse to go with it?  Good luck.  I found a couple that match on my computer screen, but in real life I think you’d have to see them together.  Anyway, these are the two that I liked best.  The first one isn’t cheap.  Buy it at for 731.99.

 As a second option, you could wear black boots with the outfit and carry the Nardelli purse.  You’d still get a punch of that pretty yellow.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Three Things You Might Not Know About Delaney Diamond

My guest today is the fabulous Delaney Diamond who's sharing some intersting things with us about her writing.  She's also offering a nice prize to one lucky commenter during her blog tour.  She'll draw a name out of the hat to receive a $10 gift certificate and an ecopy of Fight For Love.  Here's a little bit about Delaney.

Author Bio.

Bio: I was born and raised in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Since 1998, Atlanta, Georgia has been my home. I write sweet and sensual romance novels in the interracial and African-American subgenres and the Love & Romance in Color column for Night Owl Reviews Magazine. I read romance novels, mysteries, thrillers, and a fair amount of nonfiction. I wrote my first romance novel at the age of 14 and received rave reviews from my friends  . I tapped out 89 pages on a typewriter and called it Captured Heart.

I’m a diehard foodie, so when my head’s not buried in a book, I’m in the kitchen trying out new recipes or dining at my favorite restaurants with friends. My other interests include holistic health, traveling, and frugal living.

Facebook fan page:

Facebook personal profile:

Website and blog:

And now, let's let our guest talk! 

3 Things About Me That Influence My Writing

When I was asked to share a bit about myself and my writing, I have to admit I was stumped. I wondered what I could possibly talk about that would be interesting that I haven’t already shared. In the past eleven months since I’ve been published, I’ve done posts on my blog and guest posts at other sites, and I’m always trying to find new ways to say the same thing, but it’s not easy. This time I’ve decided to share three things about myself that show up in my writing and are based on my own personality traits.

I don’t curse.

In real life, I don’t curse, and I never have. Even though I don’t do it, it doesn’t bother me when others do, unless it’s overdone, which can occur with cringe-worthy frequency in conversations with certain people and in certain books. In my books, I tend to say something mild, like “damn,” but I’ll never drop the f-bomb. I’ve played around with the idea of adding stronger language in my books, but I just never felt like it was warranted, so I haven’t. I don’t think anyone is missing it.

I love to laugh.

Most of my favorite shows on television are comedies (Modern Family, Happy Endings, and Rules of Engagement anyone?), and I enjoy watching stand up comics on video or attending their live shows. Lately I’ve been trying to incorporate more comedic scenes in my romance novels, usually using secondary characters to provide comic relief in contrast to my heroes and heroines. In The Temptation of a Good Man, there’s a funny scene in the kitchen of the family’s vacation home where Roarke’s younger sister starts talking about her sex life, but her brothers are strongly opposed to hearing about it. I’ve received positive feedback about the comedic scenes I incorporate into my stories, so who knows, maybe one day I’ll pen a romantic comedy.

I love alpha men.

I like men who are alpha, strong, and determined. The men in my novels reflect these traits. They take charge and tend to be aggressive, and only the women they love can get through their armor. In Temptation, Roarke is not as alpha as I’m used to writing my heroes, but those qualities come to the surface in his pursuit of Celeste.

Writers, which personality traits have you incorporated into your books? Readers, what common threads do you notice in books by your favorite authors?

Thank you, Delaney for your interesting post.  And now would you please share an excerpt with us?

Can true love be found after one night of passion?
Celeste Burton goes out with her girlfriends to celebrate turning thirty and winds up spending an unforgettable night with the man of her dreams. One week later, as a favor, she attends a wedding with a friend as his date and is shocked when she sees Roarke again.
Roarke Hawthorne despises cheating. Cheating tore apart his family years ago. When the physics professor sees the woman he spent the night with show up at his sister’s wedding on the arm of his brother, he knows he should keep his distance. But because of the night they set fire to the sheets in his hotel room, he can’t resist the urge to be close to her–nor can he resist the temptation to have her back in his bed.

Excerpt #2

Lust flickered in his eyes, and for tense moments they stared at each other, lost in the memories of heated whispers and tangled sheets. Then, as suddenly as he’d grabbed her, he dropped her arm like a hot coal.
“Derrick doesn’t deserve to be lied to and made a fool of.” He stepped around her toward the door.
Celeste grabbed his forearm to stall his exit. “Wait, please.”
“Celeste, I can’t do this.”
She slipped between him and the door. She couldn’t be the reason for a confrontation between the two brothers, and she couldn’t bear the humiliation of Derrick finding out she’d slept with his brother the first night they met. “Please don’t say anything to Derrick. I’ll stay out of your way. I promise. You won’t even know I’m here.”
He looked down at her hand, and she followed his gaze to where her fingers wrapped around his arm. She withdrew them with haste. When her eyes found his again, desire shimmied down her spine at the hunger she saw in his.
“That’s not what I meant,” he said, his voice thick and low. “I can’t be near you. You’re too much of a temptation. Maybe you can stay away from me, but I don’t know if I can keep my hands off of you.” He slammed his palms against the door above her shoulders.
Celeste jumped, her eyes widening in shock. Shaken, she pressed back against the hard door to distance herself from him. They were too close, and the instinctive movement did little to protect her from the heat of sexual frustration emanating from his pores.
His chest rose and fell with each deep breath, and a storm brewed in his dark brown eyes. “What are you doing to me?
The tortured question needed no answer. Even if she’d been obliged to respond, he seized her mouth before she could, and his tongue thrust between her lips. The muscular, dark cords of his arms encircled her waist and held her against his body, crushing her soft curves into each hard contour of his.

Wow!  Bring me a fan!  Things are about to heat up.  Again.  Delaney, I loved finding out more about you, and I think I'll have to get a copy of The Temptation of a Good Man.  Readers, you can buy it at Amazon for only $2.99 which in my opinion is a steal.

Delaney, come back and visit us anytime. 

Six Sentence Sunday

In this excerpt from Return Engagement, my hero ponders his attraction to my heroine Elizabeth.  Return Engagement is available at

What is it about her that gets to me so bad? Yeah, she’s beautiful, but so are lots of other women. What does she have that they didn’t have? She’s the only woman who ever made my knees go weak. Sure, I’ve felt a sexual attraction to other women, I’m a man after all, but all she has to do is look at me, and I get lost in her eyes.

His hand tightened around hers.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Sweet Saturday Sample

In this excerpt from Return Engagement my heroine Elizabeth and her friend Cathy are discussing a new script-they're actresses-when a surprise, unwelcome guest arrives.  Return Engagement is available at 

"What do you think so far?" Cathy demanded. "Is the script as good as I think it is?"

Elizabeth enthusiastically nodded as she set her coffee cup back into its saucer on the coffee table and polished off the last of her coffee cake. "It’s just great!" she exclaimed, spray-ing crumbs everywhere. "It’s almost as good as Paradise Bay."

Cathy giggled and flicked a big crumb off her leg. "That’s what I thought. And best of all, there are wonderful parts for both of us. We’d get to star together again."

The doorbell rang and interrupted their reading.

"I’ll get it," Cathy said. "You keep reading."

She returned a minute later with eyes as big as saucers and a scared look on her face. "Richard is here! What are we going to do? He says he wants to see you. I asked him if he knew, uh, I mean if you knew he was coming, and he said no, but to tell you he won’t leave until you two talk. I told him to wait in the foyer, but he could walk in here any minute!"

Elizabeth dropped her script and literally wrung her hands. "Oh, why did he come when Hank isn’t here? I…I…don’t know what to do!"

"What shall I tell him?" Cathy cried. She clapped her hand across her mouth. "He’ll hear us!"

Elizabeth picked up the script which danced in her hand. "Ah… I guess… I’ll… Cathy, we’re being stupid. What’s he going to do? Kill us? Tell him to come in while I..."

She stood up, but her knees literally shook. "Why am I so scared?" she softly cried. "After all those gifts he sent I knew I’d be seeing him soon."

"I can tell him you won’t see him."

Elizabeth’s heart leaped at the thought of a reprieve, but he had waited long enough. "No, I can’t put this off any longer. I need to see him and get it over with."

"Do you want me to stick around?"

Yes, she did, but she knew exactly what Richard would think of that idea. He’d probably tell Cathy to go himself. "No, just wait in the kitchen maybe. I have to talk to him alone."

"Yell if you want me."

Cathy went to the kitchen as Elizabeth took a deep breath and tried to calm her racing heart, but when she saw Richard standing there her knees grew weak. The tension heightened until the air turned positively electric and swirled with emotional currents. He made no effort to close the distance between them; neither of them said a word.

Richard finally broke the horrid silence. "You look wonderful as usual, but how do you feel?" he asked, his voice sounding cautious and hesitant to Elizabeth. He wasn’t sure of his reception.

"Much better now." Elizabeth rolled and re-rolled her script which she had forgotten to put down. "I need to apologize for how I acted in the hospital. I’m ashamed of the way I treated you, but at the time it was like I couldn’t stop the words from coming out of my mouth. I’m sure I embarrassed you, and that was never my intention. I want you to know I regret it with all my heart." A load seemed to fall from Elizabeth’s shoulders. She had owed him this apology for a long time now.

"So, do you think we could go into the living room and sit down?"

Elizabeth blushed even though he hadn’t said anything to blush about. "Yes, let’s do."

He followed her into the living room where he sat down beside her on the sofa, giving her a whiff of expensive aftershave. She wished her heart would settle down and behave it-self, but every time he so much as blinked it took her breath away.

"Did you get your gifts yesterday?"

Elizabeth’s eyes shone. "Yes, and it was the most romantic thing anyone ever did for me. Thank you."

Elizabeth almost melted when Richard smiled at her. She was glad he had wanted to sit down because she didn’t think her knees would hold her up. You didn’t know what sexy meant until he directed that high voltage smile at you.

"You know which one I liked best?" he asked.

"Which one?"

"It was the kiss I sent at one."

"Really? Why that? I loved them all. I don’t think I had a favorite."

"I liked it because I’ve been thinking about kissing you," he confessed.

"Is that why you came over?"

"Partly. Would you mind if I kissed you?"

Intoxicated by his nearness, Elizabeth forgot that he scared her and that she didn’t want to see him. "Try and find out."

Richard slid across the sofa and gave her a gentle, sweet kiss, nothing like the possessive, hot, demanding kisses he’d given her the last night they slept together. Elizabeth sighed and brushed her finger across his lips. "You’ve got lipstick on your mouth."

"Is it the lipstick that made you taste so good?"

"Mmm. I think the sensation of taste must be very powerful."

"Could I taste again?"


He pulled her firmly against his chest. Oh, lord she’d forgotten how those rock hard muscles fired her blood! This time he kissed her with much more enthusiasm.

"Are you satisfied now?" Elizabeth breathlessly gasped when he finally raised his lips from hers. "Did you taste enough?"

"No, I didn’t. I think I’m getting addicted."

Elizabeth’s heart raced. "What’s the cure for this addiction?"

"I don’t know, and I don’t care. I like it too much to get over it." Richard’s eyes turned a smoky, dark blue as he kissed her again. This time he didn’t hold back. He kissed her the way she’d both longed for and feared for eight endless weeks.

She inhaled the scent of him: masculine, heady. She looked into his face and saw a touch of aggression and recklessness lurking underneath the heat that smoldered in his eyes.

Her breath left her as she admitted the truth. He was dangerous. He always had been, and nothing had changed. No wonder she got an adrenalin rush every single time they were alone together.