Welcome to the blog tour of You Can’t Get Blood Out of Shag Carpet by Juliette Harper! This is the first book in A Study Club Mystery series and it’s now available for sale on Amazon and Smashwords for only .99 cents!
This tour runs June 15-26 with reviews, interviews, guest posts and excerpts. Check out the tour page for the full schedule.
It’s always fun to get a chance to write a guest post, so many thanks to Writerbee for giving me the space today to talk about You Can’t Get Blood Out of Shag Carpet, the debut novel in my new cozy “Study Club” mystery series.
The idea for this book really came out of the closing chapters of the third book of The Lockwood Legacy, Alice’s Portrait. The four old women who dominate the end of that story are the major characters in Shag Carpet, but with the clock turned back to 1968.
Clara Wyler, Mae Ella Gormley, Sugar Watson, and Wilma Schneider are the officers and leading members of “the” local Study Club. They band together when one of their own, Wanda Jean Milton, is accused of murdering her husband with an Old Hickory carving knife. Local law enforcement is not stepping up to find the real killer, and the women have no idea how much local dirt they’re about to uncover.
The time period and small town setting gave me the canvas to play with big bouffants and feminism Texas style. I was even able to throw in a signature orange lava lamp at Sugar’s Style and Spray, the town’s leading beauty parlor and ground zero for much of the sleuthing action.
It would be almost impossible to describe how much fun it was to write this book, an energy I hope is evident on the page. As some of you may know, I’m actually two people, the combination of a creative team that both remember the 1960s. They spent a lot of their “work” time on this manuscript giggling over old TV commercials on YouTube and looking at the era’s fashions with the attitude of, “what were we thinking?”
As a result, this book is full of a lot of loving nostalgia tinged with good-natured irreverence and coated with Aqua Net hairspray. There just happens to be a tidy little murder right in the middle of it all, complete with a ruined shag carpet. The only thing that’s missing is a Tupperware party!
One of my favorite reviews of this book to date began like this, “No one is quite sure what the ladies in the Study Club study, but I’ll tell you one thing: I sure want to be a member of the club.” All I can say to that is, “Me too!”
Part of the fun of being a writer is that for me, and for the ladies of the Study Club, the 1960s never have to end. I assure you, the little town in this book is about to enjoy a crime wave courtesy of my pen.
The next book is already in the works. I hope you have fun meeting the Study Club women, and that you’ll look forward to joining them for their next mystery in You Can’t Put a Corpse in a Parade.
About the Book:
Wanda Jean Milton discovers her husband, local exterminator Hilton Milton, dead on her new shag carpet with an Old Hickory carving knife sticking out of his chest. Beside herself over how she’ll remove the stain, and grief-stricken over Hilton’s demise, Wanda Jean finds herself the prime suspect in the case. But she is also a member of “the” local Study Club, a bastion of independent Texas feminism 1960s style. Club President Clara Wyler has no intention of allowing a member to be a murder suspect during her administration. Aided by her younger sister and County Clerk, Mae Ella Gormley; Sugar Watson, the proprietress of Sugar’s Style and Spray; and Wilma Schneider, Army MASH veteran and local RN, the Club women set out to clear Wanda Jean’s name — never guessing the local dirt they’ll uncover in the process.