Terror on Sunshine Boulevard: murder, mystery and a book #giveaway!

American author JQ Rose and I have been online friends for years (…and soon to meet in real life!!) I interviewed JQ Rose in the very early days of my blog (interview here) and we had a great time. There were lots of brilliant comments and I got to find out so much about Mackinac Island (including how to pronounce it) that I really want to go there!

It’s a great pleasure – on a sleety February weekend in Yorkshire – to welcome JQ and to hear about her murder mystery set in sunny Florida. I feel much warmer already! And JQ has brought a gift of a giveaway, too, for one lucky reader, so please leave a comment for a chance to win.

So let’s have another cup of tea, JQ, and big plate of toasted teacakes, and welcome!

* * *

helenafairfax.comThank you, Helena, for hosting me during the Winter Warm-Up 2018 Blog Tour for Terror on Sunshine Boulevard. I look forward to visiting with you and your readers and to answering any questions asked of me in the comments. I see you have some delicious English tea in that beautiful floral china cup to warm me up.  Thank you!!

Readers–Please leave a comment below because a lucky commenter will win a PDF copy of Terror on Sunshine Boulevard. Deadline for entry is midnight on Monday 12th February (UK time).

Why Choose a Florida Senior Community for a Murder Mystery?

helena fairfax, jq rose, floridaWhen I read books, I often choose the book because of the setting.  The setting defines the backdrop of the story. Perhaps an exotic country, a small town in the Midwest, a cruise ship, a new planet, a ranch, a hotel (like the one in Helena’s Felicity at the Cross Hotel.) The setting conjures up the kind of story that can play out within the pages of the book.  Romantic suspense in an exotic country, mystery in a small town, paranormal ghosts on a cruise ship, science fiction on a new planet, and a sweet romance with a hunky cowboy and his gal on a ranch.

I chose a Florida retirement community as the setting for my paranormal mystery for two main reasons.

*Instead of old folks sitting in their rocking chairs in the sunshine, I portray the retirement community and ones like it as they actually are—vibrant and fun.  Golf, swimming, exercise, dance and craft classes, pickle ball, shuffle board, horse shoes and club meetings are just some of the activities in the community—not exactly a background for inexplicable murders.

helena fairfax, florida, jq rose

It’s a place where people who have worked all their lives have a chance to enjoy the good things in life. I love the juxtaposition of the bright fun-in- the- sun feeling with the darkness of murder and mystery.  Even the title includes the contrasting views—terror and sunshine.

* One of the oft-quoted  rules of writing is to write what you know. And I know about Florida, senior citizens, and retirement communities. My husband, Gardener Ted, and I have spent winters RVing in FL or living in the senior park. In our travels, we met a lot of wonderful characters. How could you not write about them? Throwing them together in this setting results in a story alive with humor, drama, and a few chills, but not from cold weather!

florida, helena fairfax, jq rose


murder mystery floridaBLURB:  Rescuing a naked woman lying in a geranium bed or investigating mysterious murders are not the usual calls for first responder Jim Hart. He expects slip and fall accidents or low blood pressure emergencies in his retirement community of Citrus Ridge Senior Community and Golf Resort. The ghastly crime scenes turn the winter time fun into a terrifying season of death and mystery when the authorities cannot track down the predator responsible.

Jim and his wife Gloria could escape the horror and grief by returning to their northern home, but concern for their friends and residents keeps them in Florida. With the entire community in a dither over the deaths, the Harts participate in the normal winter activities of golfing, dancing, and pool parties with their friends to distract them from the sadness and loss.

Can Jim and Gloria work with the authorities to discover who or what is killing the seniors on Sunshine Boulevard and stop the increasing body count?

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About J.Q.

After writing feature articles in magazines, newspapers, and online magazines for over fifteen years, J.Q. Rose jq rose, floridaentered the world of fiction. Her published mysteries are Deadly Undertaking, Dangerous Sanctuary, and Terror on Sunshine Boulevard released by Books We Love Publishing. Blogging, photography, Pegs and Jokers board games, and travel are the things that keep her out of trouble. She spends 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 


Books We Love Author Page


pelicans, florida, helena fairfax

* * *

Thanks so much for the post, JQ. I love the title Terror on Sunshine Boulevard, and I also LOVE the premise of terror in a retirement home :) I have a question…What is “pickle ball”??

If you’ve enjoyed JQ Rose’s post, or have any questions or comments at all, please let us know. We’d love to hear from you!

15 thoughts on “Terror on Sunshine Boulevard: murder, mystery and a book #giveaway!

  1. Hi Helena. Delighted to be here with you and your readers this morning. Oops, I think it’s afternoon there by now. And so happy to have tea and toasted tea cakes with you. I’m not sure what a tea cake is, but I’ll find out when my hubby and I come over this summer, I’m sure.
    Thank you so much for hosting me again. Always a pleasure to visit with your readers.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pickle ball is a game similar to tennis, but played on a smaller court usually laid out within a tennis court outdoors so the court can serve two purposes, tennis and pickle ball. Pickle ball can also be played indoors so there are different balls for indoor and outdoor. Both are plastic balls with holes in them like a “nerf” ball.The rackets are basically ping pong paddles on steroids.
    The game caught on with seniors–it’s a bit slower than playing tennis and less area to cover. But now, even young folks are playing and enjoying the game.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sounds like a great game. I haven’t played tennis for years, but this sounds fun. Thanks so much for the lovely post. Yes, we must definitely have some toasted teacakes when you come over. Hope the sun is still shining for you this weekend!


  3. A lovely interview and introduction of JQ Rose and her book, Helena! I agree, that the setting is of utmost importance and I love the idea of a murder mystery in a retirement home! And particularly one set in the warmth of Florida! Have a great time when you both meet up! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ll probably get shouted at for this, but would the title SLAUGHTER ON SUNSHINE BOULEVARD have alliterated better?

    or SLAUGHTER ON SUNSHINE STRIP, as the boulevard of the book title reminds me of Sunset Boulevard and there’s also Sunset Strip…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We’d never shout at you, James! I think the word “slaughter” might be a bit strong for a cozy mystery, though. Perhaps it’s an idea for JQ’s next book :) I also thought of Sunset Boulevard, but I like the idea of Sunshine Boulevard – and anything with the word “sunshine” in gets my vote at the moment! Thanks so much for dropping in, and for your great comment!


  5. Ooh, James, why weren’t you around a few years ago when I was dreaming up a title??? Thanks for your feedback. I agree with Helena, slaughter conjures up really gory scenes for me. There’s no blood and guts at the crime scenes. In fact, the cover artist had blood graphics on the original cover, and I asked her to remove it. Thanks for stopping by.


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