It’s been a long time

I haven’t kept up with this blog. I have discovered that social media is a full time job and I’m not ready to give up my day job. I had hoped to be writing book two, but haven’t had the time for that either nor the inspiration. I have the bones, but alas no flesh, yet. I hope to at least keep up with the business of blogging, but for now cameos will have to do.

Excerpt from Chapter Eleven

The Promise of Sunsets by Elizabeth Dolan-Cancian

Excerpt from Chapter Eleven:

The thought had crossed his mind to turn on his lights and siren to
expedite his journey to his sister’s home in Rancho Palos Verdes, but
not being one to abuse his power, Kris ebbed along with the other motorists
mired in the rush-hour traffic on the 405. After an hour of what in a perfect
Los Angeles should have been a forty-five-minute drive from Santa Monica,
he pulled onto the long, steep driveway that ended at the top of a hill where
his sister’s house stood. The beautiful Mediterranean-style home built in the
1920s offered breathtaking views of the ocean and canyon. The manicured
grounds alone were a luxury, with a pool and a spa. In the home’s entryway,
a crystal chandelier hung almost two stories over the Italian marble tile floor.
There were vaulted ceilings, hardwood floors adorned with antique Persian
rugs, two fireplaces—one in the living room and one in the master bedroom—
a large California kitchen with eating area, a formal dining room, six
bedrooms, five baths, a guest house, and a five-car garage.

Excerpt from Chapter Ten

The Promise of Sunsets by Elizabeth Dolan-Cancian

Excerpt from Chapter Ten:

As Abby headed back to the hotel, she tried to calm herself. She
wished she had never walked into Chi Chi’s. Hell, she was beginning
to wish she had never come to LA.

Before she exited the car, she checked her makeup, erased any evidence
of tears, and headed up to the room. Refreshed from her nap, Kiersten
was on the balcony, and Abby stepped outside to join her. She
wanted to avoid any conversation about Kris Larsen, but Kiersten
pressed, “So have you heard from your detective?”

“He’s not my detective. Forget about Kristoffer Larsen, okay. That is a

“Why? He hasn’t called yet. He will. I know I saw something between

Excerpt from Chapter Nine

The Promise of Sunsets by Elizabeth Dolan-Cancian

Excerpt from Chapter Nine:

As Detective Kristoffer Larsen headed down the hallway, he heard
laughter emanating from the squad room, which abruptly ended
as soon as he walked through door.

“What’s going on here?” Larsen asked.

“Nothing,” Sanchez smirked, hardly suppressing his chuckling.

“Come on, Sanchez, give Clooney his present,” Detective Morris

“Sure, here you go—Clooney,” Sanchez laughed and handed him the
exquisitely wrapped box. “Tell us, how old is your girlfriend? Twelve?”
The detectives in the room burst into laughter. “So where did you two
meet, the playground?” Morris teased.

Excerpt from Chapter Eight

The Promise of Sunsets by Elizabeth Dolan-Cancian

Excerpt from Chapter Eight:

Abby was pleased as she packed for Los Angeles. She had gone from
a size 16 to a 10. Hitting a single-digit size would have been wonderful,
but she was certainly happy with her accomplishment. Reaching
her “perfect” weight, she believed, was as impractical as turning twentyfive

When Abby and Kiersten arrived in LA, the sun was shining and the
sky was a cloudless blue. As soon as they got into their room, Abby made
her obligatory call to Joe and gave him the hotel’s address and telephone
number. He reiterated to her to have fun and to be safe. While Kiersten
napped, Abby walked over two miles into Venice, zigzagging her way
until she hit Ocean Avenue and found the canals. She picked out her
future home and promised herself that when she hit the lottery, she’d
move there. She felt invigorated, intoxicated, and giddy. The people were
friendly, and the energetic streets were filled with dog walkers and people
riding bikes. Abby was thrilled to be in the City of Angels with its
gleaming downtown, distant mountains, and miles of beaches, canyons,
and picturesque winding roads.

Excerpt from Chapter Seven

The Promise of Sunsets by Elizabeth Dolan-Cancian

Excerpt from Chapter Seven:

As the couple drove through the busy streets of Manhattan, Joe
assumed his tour bus-driver persona. He was an animated
speaker, and Abby worried that he wasn’t paying attention. She snapped
and said sharply, “I don’t care about the damned city. Keep your eyes on
the road!” She wanted to take back the words the moment they’d spilled
from her lips.

“I’ve put thousands of miles on the road. I can drive, damn it!” he

“It’s just that every time we come into the city, you tell me the same

“I’ve told you about the church before?”

“Yes, Joe.”

He reached over to take her hand, and she unconsciously pulled it
away. “Fine. Don’t hold my hand,” he said.

Excerpt from Chapter Six

The Promise of Sunsets by Elizabeth Dolan-Cancian

Excerpt from Chapter Six:

By the time she got home, the sky was sunless and the maple tree
with its empty branches stood stoically against the black sky. She
missed those moments with the fading evening light. She loved sunsets,
with their explosion of vibrant color applauding a day’s completion.
With the fleeting daylight hours of wintertime, however, she often
missed the applause when she returned home.

After she completed grading her ninth graders’ essays, which now
looked liked they’d been bludgeoned by a red pen, Abby decided to call
her childhood friend Isabella. Abby and Isabella had been friends since
they were eight years old. It was unclear what held together the friendship
that had been challenged by distance and diametrically opposite
tastes in just about everything ranging from men to relationships, politics,
clothes, music, food, recreational activities, and whatever else one
can have an opinion about, but despite their differences, they were kindred
spirits—a duo like Laverne and Shirley, Cagney and Lacey, or Rizzoli
and Isles. They were there for each other, always, unequivocally,
without question, and without judgment, regardless of how differently
they viewed the world. One thing they had in common was their inability
to shake the growing discontentment with their lives. Both felt powerless
to do anything meaningful to change their situations.

Excerpt from Chapter Five

The Promise of Sunsets by Elizabeth Dolan-Cancian

Excerpt from Chapter Five:

“Merry Christmas!” Joe bellowed gleefully as he opened the
front door. Abby’s brother, Patrick; his husband, Ben; and
their children, Cassie, twelve, and Adam, eight, ambled through the
door, arms laden with packages. Dressed in the firefighter outfit he had
gotten for Christmas, Adam charged into the living room, hose in hand,
looking for a fire to extinguish.

“Look what I got for Christmas,” Joe said as he danced across the
floor, adding a jeté for emphasis.

“Your foot is healed! Praise the Lord!” Patrick said as he hugged his

“He’s been doing that dance for everyone that’s come through the
door, except for the jeté. He saved the best for last,” Abby explained.

“You look fabulous, dahling,” Ben remarked as he kissed her hand.
Patrick smiled at his little sister and could see the tension on her face
that even her widest smile couldn’t mask. “It will be a wonderful Christmas,
just like it is every year. Don’t worry,” he whispered into her ear as
he kissed her on the cheek.

Excerpt from Chapter Four

The Promise of Sunsets by Elizabeth Dolan-Cancian

Excerpt from Chapter Four:

Abby made eggs and cheese with toast for the kids and Joe and
then hurried out the door to meet Kiersten with the mystery gift
in hand. The friends had met at the community college several years
ago. It wasn’t friendship at first sight. Kiersten had that aloofness that
Germans are believed to possess, and Abby had been bubbly and congenial,
looking to make friends. Abby appeared silly, always a witticism
on her lips, and not particularly intellectual. Kiersten was
studious and scholarly. They were also physically opposite. Kiersten
was nearly six feet tall, thin, blonde, and blue-eyed; Abby was a
smidge under 5’4’, with brown hair and golden brown eyes, and overweight.
But after a few classes in World Literature and insightful commentary
from Abby, not to mention high marks from the professor for
her essays, Kiersten realized she may have misjudged the high-spirited
younger woman. A few lunches and meaningful philosophical discussions
later, they had become friends.

Excerpt from Chapter Three

The Promise of Sunsets by Elizabeth Dolan-Cancian

Excerpt from Chapter Three:

The days were getting shorter. Abby just about caught the sunset
through the maple tree when she got home. She loved those quiet
moments, watching the fading sunlight while listening to her iPod and the
music she could never listen to with Joe. As more leaves fell from the tree,
the sunlight no longer only seeped through in beams but flooded through
the branches like light through an open window. In those fleeting minutes,
she was enticed by the fantasy of another life. But fantasy didn’t pay bills,
raise children, sit at the table and eat dinner, or make love. Reality with all
its foibles and heartache was something that could be counted on.