Thursday, October 22, 2015

Big News: Deadly Undertaking is Available, Undertaker's Daughter Short Story, Giveaway

Hello and welcome! I have big news to share with you today. 
My mystery novel, Deadly Undertaking is now available online. 

What an exciting time and what perfect timing to have a story that takes place in a funeral home available in time for Halloween. It isn't a scary story with monsters, zombies, and werewolves, but it does have a shadow man, Henry, who plays an important part in the novel.
Deadly Undertaking
A handsome detective, a shadow man, 
and a murder victim kill Lauren’s plan for a simple life.
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Deadly Undertaking grew from the short essay I am sharing with you on this post. The novel's setting is a funeral home because I'm the daughter of an undertaker. And I have two brothers who are funeral directors. When I wrote this story for a fun blog post four years ago, I had no idea I would have a published mystery from the idea. Find out more about Deadly Undertaking after the short essay.

It's Halloween time, so you'll have to decide if  the tale I'm spinning is a trick or a treat. Take a break and have fun with this. You'll get to know me better after learning about my "growing up" years.
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Undertaker’s Daughter
By
J Q Rose

I always thought of horror writers as eccentric, peculiar people. But my perception changed when a horror story sprang from my own mind. You can imagine my surprise when my mystery/horror tale Sunshine Boulevard was accepted and published in 2011. That made ME a published author of horror stories.

Right away, I must tell you I am not an eccentric, peculiar person. I’m just a regular woman who is a wife, mother, grandmother. I like eating a burger at McDonalds, shopping at Walmart, and reading mystery novels. But, perhaps some would think my childhood was different. You see, my father was an embalmer and funeral director. I was reared in a funeral home.

It was not unusual to have a dead body laid out in a casket several days in a row in our living room which converted to the funeral chapel. In fact, sometimes we’d have more than one body in our home. The embalming room was in the back of the house, and yes, I wore lots of perfume and soap to cover the pungent odor of formaldehyde on my clothes and hair.

We had knee caps for ashtrays in the private area of our home…not in the public area because that may upset some folks. But Dad was a heavy smoker, so he appreciated having the convenience of an ashtray nearby at all times.

In our kitchen, boxes of ashes of the departed sat in the pantry shelves next to the canned green beans and corn. Some families squabbled over who was going to pay the funeral expenses for their dearly departed, so they never showed up to claim the ashes for fear of being left with the debt.  In one case the family of Ida Mayberry never claimed their sweet aunt. So Aunt Ida took up residence in the cupboard next to the pork and beans.

Life as an undertaker’s daughter did not seem to be any big deal. My friends, well, most of them, were happy to come over and play hide and seek in the casket room or to swipe flowers out of the funeral arrangements to put in our hair for dress up.

My girlfriends did get upset when one of the spirits who regularly hung out in the funeral home flew by. The whoosh of air was the only indicator of their presence. Yes, I lost a couple of friends that way because they were scared to death…well, not literally. They just were creeped out especially when one of the spirits would knock over the Barbie doll house or send the collection of Barbies swirling around the room.

Needless to say, I enjoyed going to my friend’s house. It was a treat to open their pantry door to get a can of pineapple and not see the boxed ashes of poor Aunt Ida. I could never shake the sadness I felt for her because noone cared enough to bury her ashes or at least sprinkle them on their garden.

So, yes, some may believe it was an unusual childhood compared to the experiences of others. But I felt loved, secure, and safe at all times. And that’s what counts for a kid.

The growing up years certainly shape the adult one becomes. I don’t know if this is the reason I can write a horror story or not, but I can assure you I am a normal, well-rounded person, not eccentric or peculiar at all. In fact I got rid of the knee cap ash trays just last week. I do have Aunt Ida in the cupboard. Her family never claimed her and I have grown attached to her company.
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BOO! So do you believe what you read? I must confess most of it is made up. And of course, Deadly Undertaking is fiction, but I did have my funeral director brothers help me with the story. So, it's loosely based on the real funeral business. Keyword here is loosely.!

Back of the Book: Deadly Undertaking by J.Q. Rose
Deadly Undertaking
Cover art by Michelle Lee

Lauren Staab knew there would be dead bodies around when she returned home. After all, her family is in the funeral business, Staab and Blood Funeral Home. Still, finding an extra body on the floor of the garage between the hearse and the flower car shocked her. Lauren’s plan to return to her hometown to help care for her mother and keep the books for the funeral home suddenly turns upside down in a struggle to prove she and her family are not guilty of murdering the man. But will the real killer return for her, her dad, her brother? Her mother’s secrets, a killer, a handsome policeman, and a shadow man muddle up her intention to have a simple life. 

Welcome home, Lauren!

Buy Links for Deadly Undertaking

Books We Love Bookstore 
BWL is having a BOGO Sale. Buy one book and get the second free. Check it out!
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But wait, there's more! (I know you're thinking will this blog post never end?)
'Tis the Halloween season, and for those who enjoy being scared out of their wits, I will be giving away an e-copy of Sunshine Boulevard. Easy entry--leave a comment and you're in! Deadline to enter is Sunday, October 25 at 9:00 pm EDT.
Sunshine Boulevard
Mysterious deaths upset the Florida retirement community 
interfering with their seasonal activities and turning up more than dead bodies

Back of the Book: Sunshine Boulevard by J.Q. Rose
Who or what is killing the seniors on Sunshine Boulevard?  Follow Jim and Gloria Hart, snowbirds who annually migrate to Florida for warm sunshine, fun, and games in snow-free winters. However this season, Jim Hart, a volunteer First Responder in his retirement community of Citrus Ridge, is drawn into the investigation of the mysterious deaths. Even in the midst of the unfortunate demise of the residents on Sunshine Boulevard, the Harts try to enjoy the winter with friends. They don't realize that their friends are getting together for their own kinds of affairs with each other. The neighbors are in a dither over the deaths, but perhaps more intrigued by the gossip about the affairs and why the naked lady was found lying in the geranium bed.

Please enter to win this funny, but scary, e-book! I'm not tricking you. It's a treat for me to gift this e-book to a lucky reader.

Please enter your email address to follow this blog. You don't want to miss out on the new blog posts. We're going to have fun with guests,  prizes, and new reads this winter! 

Thank you.



9 comments:

Loni Townsend said...

Congrats on the new release!

Heather Brainerd said...

Congratulations, JQ! Your new book looks killer. (Sorry!) I'm looking forward to reading it, though I'm currently juggling six (yes, SIX) other books, so it may be a little while. I already have Sunshine Blvd and really enjoyed it, as well as Coda to Murder. Best of luck with your newest book, and happy Halloween!

J Q Rose said...

Thank you, Loni.

J Q Rose said...

Thank you, Heather. Killer, eh? At least you apologized!!!! No rush on reading the e-book. It'll be out there in cyberspace for awhile. Glad you enjoyed the other 2 mysteries. Happy Halloween back at ya!

Marsha said...

Congrats, JQ. I bought and I'm sharing your post. :)

J Q Rose said...

Thank you for purchasing the book, Marsha AND for sharing the post! Hugs.

Anonymous said...

Congrats! Love that cover. :)

Tess Grant

J Q Rose said...

Thanks, Tess. Michelle Lee is the cover artist. I think it's pretty cool too.

J Q Rose said...

Congratulations to Emaginette! She won a copy of Sunshine Boulevard just in time for a fun, scary read for Halloween.