Back in the hot seat: Michele Hope!
As stars glitter above the Ozarks and a grand old hotel, opportunities can avail in the least expected of places. Yet for the skilled and gifted, so much can be made from a graceful bend at the waist, a suggestive touch or an alluring smile. The ghost of Al Capone haunts floors of grandeur and our handsome escapees from a tropical storm ply their skills to an unsuspecting young lifeguard. And does he ever . . . become the fortunate beneficiary of lace, rum and a midnight dip...
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Can't you just see it? Sounds downright intriguing, huh? Well, ladies and gents, that is the setup for Michele Hope's latest release, Vantage Points! And the stunning, multitalented Michele has been kind enough to come and grace the Parlor with her presence again today. (If you missed her last visit, go here!) All right—*fire's up the tattoo machine*—let's drop some INK!
Sable: Hey, Michele! Welcome back to the Parlor. Okay, Al Capone's ghost, an old hotel, and a young lifeguard? *lifts brow* Tell us about your hot new book, Vantage Points.
Michele: Well, whatever made you ask me about THAT? Just a naughty little southern tale (or is that tail?) set at a grand hotel.
Sable: Definitely "tail", and definitely naughty *grins*. So, what's the inspiration behind this tale?
Michele: Michael and I love staying at old hotels. The Eola in Natchez, the Place d'Armes in New Orleans, The Battle House in Mobile is to die for! The Arlington in Hot Springs is a place where gangsters used to hang out (or hide). Not too much law & order back then. We go every summer. I do love the rack of lamb at the Fountain Room! They also have a split-level pool built into the mountainside. If you use your imagination, lose yourself and the vacationers, it just seemed a natural setting for a dangerously handsome couple to live out some dangerously sexy moments. I AM and imaginative girl Sable!
Sable: That you are, my dear, and with the background on some of those places, well, if only the walls could talk.... What's your favorite line or scene from VP?
Michele: Hmm . . . lemme think. Oh jeez, now I'm gonna have to read it again. I'll be right back. Okay, I'm back. Quick read if you were there. I mean, uh . . . if you wrote it! HAAA!!! Whew! I think I'm glowing. I suppose it would be, and since I'm all about the seduction, the opening scene at the pool where my pretty belle plies her charm to an unsuspecting lifeguard. And with such conspiratorial innocence too. They're all making waves soon enough.
Sable: Last time you stopped by, we were talking about your other book, Service Rendered. Do you think your writing has changed in any way since then?
Michele: Oh, I don't know, likely not. With Service Rendered, I wrote in 1st person and that was new. I like that it's more introspective and easier to avoid those wore out pronouns. You know, "He . . . ." and "she . . . ." then some more "he and she" until some of the stuff just bores me. It seems to be just bad writing, poor sentence structure. Don't forget, Michael is an integral part of all this. He's very accomplished at description and setting. And pretty damn handy to have around *looks up and winks at Sable* He's real good with chainsaw and baitin' a hook!
Sable: Y'know what they say: Behind every good woman is a man with a chainsaw :) Now I know ya'll like to take it nice and easy on that pretty bayou of yours, but what's next on your To-Be-Written list and when can we expect it? (I'm a city girl, and therefore an impatient li'l cuss, or so my Nana says.)
Michele: I have another book to be released early in May, "Unselfishly Surrendered." More way down South setting but with witches and absinthe! I guess it might cross-over into paranormal but sometimes 'paranormal' seems fairly normal around here. We have an old witch living down the bayou, I've only seen her once and she didn't wave back. Michael has cautioned me about going and looking for that sort of thing. He said, "If you go lookin' for the Devil, chere, well, he'll find you first! So just let it alone." I have seen, how should I say, some unexplainable things here in this mystical place. Voodoo! But I can't imagine writing or living anywhere else. Oh . . . did I say anything about the SEX? Evidently, witches have it too!
Sable: "...lookin' for the Devil..."—That's why Michael's go that chainsaw! LOL! Now, most of us in the writing clan have multiple business endeavors and I know you're no different, Michele. Tell us about your (and Michael's *rawr*) other creative inventions.
Michele: I have to tell you about these amazing and beautiful handmade leather journals we're putting together. Hand stitched, heavy printing papers, original artwork. Very cool stuff if I say so myself. Okay, okay, actually Michael makes them but I HELP! We'll be going public with them soon so be lookin' for 'em. New South Books. You always get a heads-up on what we're doing. No writer should be without one. What was the question? I forgot. Oh yeah, business. Business? Sable, I'm busy fishin'!
In closing, my southern manners would fail me if I didn't invite you to join us here sur le bayou. Sweet tea darlin? Pimms Cup? I happen to know a very good server. HA! Bienvenue Sable, à tout moment.
Sable: Those are absolutely gorgeous. Nothing like a handmade journal to hold all your little secrets.... Merci, Michele, and a Pimm's Cup from that server, please! And now, un petit lécher (a little lick) from Vantage Points...
As we stand waist deep in the pool's middle, a relaxed demeanor among us permits easy bantering. The clouds race above in an uncontested advance from the Gulf. In their hurry, they remain ambivalent to the hands placed on my hips, a proffered kiss to the back my shoulder. Experience tells me my man's eyes are cut to Eric, who stands directly in front of us, merely feet away. I feel those strong hands then the unmistakable caress I'm so familiar with. One hand traces slowly to my waist, the other gathering my hair from my shoulders. More kisses follow, delicacies to my nape. In accord, another hand moves from my waist to just beneath my breast, cupping me softly. Now, both palms are moving uniformly around the volume of my curves, lingering moments in full but soft clutch. My nipples tauten, the aching ever so pleasant. I feel them strain against the bikini's light fabric. Before closing my eyes, I see my lifeguard watching the unlikely stagecraft playing out in his presence.
Bliss is unaccounted for in time. Realizing I've lost myself for a moment, my eyes open and I look directly into Eric's. Unlike the clouds, he is observant and very still, mesmerized by this improbable, slow-motion scene. My husband's hands move with practiced expertise to the straps, slowly releasing them from my shoulders. I feel them surrender, falling to my arms. The down on neck rises as the little fastener in back is freed and my top tumbles gently away, fully revealing nipples that point skyward, stiffened and drawing even tighter. Oh the agony! Full of drama, I feel the weight of my breasts settle and at the same instant, I feel the compelling and defining bulge of my husband from behind.
I look at Eric, incredulous and indulge the moment, allowing for his full consumption before taking a deep breath to hold. I glide straight downward into the shallows depths, the fleeting touch of my husband's fingertips following on the backs of my arms. I imagine the bikini top floating on the surface in a vortex of tangled hair. With smooth precision and elegance of movement, I extend my hand backward in the submersion, finding the considerable authority beneath my husband's Bahaman shorts.
Springing from the concrete bottom, I jettison across the pool, never surfacing until I reach the side. Then rising above the water's level, I discover no indication of a wake, my getaway so flawless. I bring my hands up and push water from my face, clearing my eyes. My breasts are buoyant just above the water line, floating, freed of restraint and gravity. From across the pool, I become witness to my admirers, one possessed of extreme confidence, the other, stunned like a goat! I hear but one voice, influence in its strength as it is calming in its certainty. "Perfect isn't she?"
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Sable: WHOA! I love the spicy licks :) I want to thank Michele for dropping in today, and you readers for swinging by. Make sure you leave her some love down there in the comments and then go out there and grab your copy of Vantage Points for just $2.99 NOW!