Book Hooks Blog Hop #MFRWHooks
Hello and welcome to the Focused on Story Blog. Today we're joining the Book Hooks Blog Hop sponsored by the Marketing For Romance Writers Group. Each participating blogger shares an excerpt from their book. I'm sharing from my romantic suspense novel, Deadly Undertaking.
Deadly Undertaking by J.Q. Rose
A handsome detective, a shadow man,
and a murder victim kill Lauren’s plan for a simple life.
Back of the book:
Lauren Staab knew there would be dead bodies 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!
Excerpt: Chapter Four
In this excerpt, the reader is introduced to Henry, the shadow man, a ghost character who interrupts Lauren's life--always at the wrong time. But really, when is a good time for a ghost to interrupt your life?
Gathering her wits about her, Lauren decided she needed to know if the dead man truly was Tony. If so, she and Piper had to find Stephanie.
She returned to her desk, uncovered Detective Richards’ business card from under the files on her desk, and called.
“Richards.” he answered as if he had no time for interruptions.
Lauren was taken aback for a minute, expecting a secretary or switchboard person to answer and connect her to the detective.
“Hello, Detective Richards. This is Lauren Staab, at the Staab and Blood Funeral Home where the murder occurred this morning.” She stalled for enough time to get her thoughts together.
“Yes, I’m quite aware the murder was at the funeral home, Ms. Staab. How can I help you?”
What an arrogant man. “I’m calling to confirm the identity of the person who was killed. I’ve heard several reports.”
“We’re not revealing the name of the deceased.”
“Well can you tell me if his name is Tony?”
“Sorry. I cannot.” His voice softened. “I’m not at liberty at this time to tell you. I completely understand your concern. Do you know Anthony—er. Tony?”
“Yes, I do. He’s my friend’s fiancé.”
“I know the rumor mill is probably producing more names than this, but we have to be sure of the victim’s identity before we release it. Do you understand the situation?” Lauren detected a note of sincerity in his voice. Did the man have feelings after all?
“Oh, yes I understand. But since he was in our garage, will someone call me to let me know?” She couldn’t help using the snarky tone.
“Yes. I’ll be sure to call you as soon as we have a definitive identification. You have a good evening.” The phone clicked to silence.
“And you have a good night too!” She slammed the headset into the cradle, yanked the desk drawer open, and retrieved her bag. She didn’t like being dismissed like that.
She reached into her bag to find her pack of cigarettes, pulled it out, threw it back in, and pulled the beat up pack out again. So much for trying once more to quit smoking.
When she looked up, she glimpsed a smoky shadow hovering by the door. The pungent smell of spicy carnations wafted through the room, bringing on the three little sneezes. She worked in a funeral home. She shouldn’t be allergic to flowers. Maybe she was allergic to him.
Lauren faced the silhouette of a man dressed in a long trench coat and fedora hat. He stood, arms akimbo, evidently looking straight at her.
She had expected the shadow man to show up sometime after the terrifying events of the morning. He lurked around the rooms in the funeral home appearing whenever he wished. Because no one else ever mentioned the apparition, Lauren assumed she was the only one he communicated with. At times she questioned if Henry was real or just her overtired brain playing tricks on her.
His timing for wanting to talk was usually bad. This murder was definitely a bad time. “Henry, I can’t talk now. I’m leaving to meet Piper.” She shoved the drawer closed with her foot.
“All right,” he said in his breathy voice. “I guess you’re doing okay if you can go off to meet your friend.” Then he was gone, slipping through a fold into another dimension.
Buy Links: Deadly Undertaking is available at your favorite digital bookseller.
Universal Link for Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Apple, etc.
Available in paperback and eBook at Amazon