J.Q. Rose and I are exchanging blogs today. She and I are fast virtual friends, as we’ve never met in person. However, through the years I have come to know and respect my pen-pal colleague, not just as a mystery writer, but as a fine human being. Please join me in welcoming J.Q. Rose, who has a wonderful tale of the heart to tell. She continues on a blog tour promoting her new book, Deadly Undertaking.
Thank you, Heather, for hosting me today.
Deadly Undertaking is dedicated to a special woman in my life, my friend and mentor, Bernie Frens. Sadly she passed away two years ago after struggling with Alzheimer’s disease for over ten years. Discovering she had this debilitating disease was heartbreaking news for her, her family, and for us. But, Bernie was a strong woman and leaned on God for strength and courage to face the future.
Bernie, about twenty years older than me, came to me at the right time when I needed her knowledge, patience, and skill set. She came to ask me for a job.
My husband and I had just purchased a floral shop and greenhouses in a small town in Michigan. When we moved from Central Illinois, we didn’t know a person in that town, but we were fired up to become members of the community and make our fledgling business a success.
We had absolutely no training as business owners and no experience in the flower business. The only knowledge I had about flowers I learned when I helped in my family’s funeral business. One of my jobs was to help my mom set up the display of funeral arrangements for a visitation and funeral service. The background for my character, Lauren Staab, in Deadly Undertaking comes from my growing up in the funeral business.
We closed on the purchase of the floral shop and greenhouses in snowy December and became proud business owners in January. We struggled through the winter and spring seasons working our way through a steep learning curve. That spring, Bernie stopped to buy some flats of flowers and asked if we needed some part-time help. She had owned a flower shop for several years, but sold it when she re-married and moved away from her area. She really missed the work.
Thank goodness she stopped that morning and asked about helping because she was the guiding light for me. Lucky for our budding floral shop, she was an excellent designer, as well as a delightful sales woman exuding customer service. I watched and learned from her about the business. She held me to a high standard of quality and service and lived her Christian ethics rather than just talked about them.
We had many interests outside of the shop including discussions on Christian theology, writing, and poetry. She was an excellent poet and I imagine if she were alive today, she would have poems published as e-books.
When my dreaded thirtieth birthday dawned, Bernie secretly made a birthday cake and snuck in to our apartment over the flower shop to leave it in my kitchen as a surprise. When I discovered it, I burst into tears thankful for her thoughtfulness. Let me tell you though, seeing the 3 and 0 candles on my cake certainly made me face the truth that 30 was happening and there was nothing I could do about it.
I could never thank her enough for all she did for us personally and professionally. It was my privilege to have her in my life.
Because Alzheimer’s stole away my friend Bernie, I wanted to bring awareness to this horrid disease through writing about Lauren and her family’s dealing with her mother’s struggle with AD.
If you would like to know more about Alzheimer’s and are interested in learning about this disease, go to the Alzheimer’s Association website. Their vision is a world with no Alzheimer’s disease. http://www.alz.org/
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A handsome detective, a shadow man, and a murder victim kill Lauren’s plan for a simple life.
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!
Amazon UK http://amzn.to/1Gz1utF
Barnes and Noble http://bit.ly/1H72tvV
Books We Love Bookstore http://store.payloadz.com/go/?id=2395820
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A Little About J.Q.
After writing feature articles in magazines, newspapers, and online magazines for over fifteen years, J.Q. Rose entered the world of fiction. Her published mysteries are Sunshine Boulevard, Coda to Murder, and Deadly Undertaking. Blogging, photography, Pegs and Jokers board games, and travel are the things that keep her out of trouble. She and her husband spend winters in Florida and summers up north camping and hunting toads, frogs, and salamanders with her four grandsons and granddaughter.
Connect with J.Q. Rose online at
J.Q. Rose blog http://www.jqrose.com/
J.Q. Rose YouTube videos- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCgGrcJEb3jPlxa-lXAWVROg/videos
Thank you so much for hosting me on the Deadly Undertaking Blog Tour. Readers, you’re invited to enter the Rafflecopter drawing for prizes during the tour November 12-25. Find the Rafflecopter and the blog tour schedule at the Contest page on the J.Q. Rose blog.
http://www.jqrose.com/p/get-in-on-fun-j.html Good luck!