Julie Mulhern- photo by Larry Levenson

Julie Mulhern- photo by Larry Levenson

I took another sip of coffee and glanced around the pool. The morning light still looked delicate enough to break. The weeping cherry tree had lost a few leaves and they skittered across the pool deck in the soft breeze. The police conferred around the body. Then they stepped away and I saw it. Saw her. In that second, my morning went from plain dreadful to the worst ever. (Excerpt from THE DEEP END.)

Funny how you stumble across strangers who instantly become close friends. I’d judged a writing contest a couple years back, and the anonymous entry, THE DEEP END, was a total standout! Who WAS this author?! The snarky tone of the heroine (the only sane character in a zany cast of 1970’s preppy, country club wives and a mother from hell) had me howling. Enter the requisite dead body (and not just any corpse- it’s a fantastic twist- ALL in Chapter 1) and I was hooked!

Naturally I gave this entry a perfect score, left my name/contact info and an entire page of gushing remarks…mostly over my shock that this hilarious cozy mystery hadn’t been snapped up for publication. And then I did something I’d never done: asked a complete stranger if I could beta read the rest of it. (Yeah, like I have that kind of time on my hands!) But that is HOW GREAT the novel is.

To my delight, the writer- Julie Mulhern, wrote back and (yes!) sent the rest of the hilarious cozy mystery. Now we’ve not only become close friends, but we were nominated for 2014 Golden Heart awards together and we will be published by the same publishing company in the near future.

And, dear readers, I’m honored to announce that Julie’s debut, THE DEEP END, releases TODAY!toast Naturally, on the busiest and most exciting day of her life I insisted she stop everything and answer my nosy questions. (Because that’s what friends do.) Introducing Julie Mulhern-take note of her name, folks!

Q-Your heroine’s glib ability to balance the fine line between hysterical snark and nasty sarcasm is honed to perfection. AND it’s written in 1st person. Do these type of thoughts come to you in real life or do you channel someone inside when you sit down to write?

The snark and internal sarcasm are all me. Ellison lets me give voice to things I would never say. 

Q-How on earth did you come up with this premise?

I wanted to create a straight-laced world, perfect on its surface, then flip the rock. Everyone thinks the 60’s changed everything but really it was the 70’s. The ideas that existed on the fringes of society in the 60’s went mainstream. The roles of women changed – even Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis got a job. Divorce rates skyrocketed. I am woman, hear me roar.

Q-I’m assuming you’re a child of the 70’s since you nailed the culture so well. Why did you choose that era rather than contemporary?

You guessed right. I grew up in the 70s and felt a certain nostalgia about the decade. I was too young to go to discos so I remember the sweet parts – rainbow socks with individual toes, deodorant called Tickle, how no self-respecting kid showed up on the playground if they’d missed Happy Days.

THE DEEP END coverQ-WHERE did you come up with all the foods, commercials, songs, teen accessories, etc that are in your story? Research? YouTube? There’s no way you remembered Cherry Lip Smackers for example (in your 2nd novel of the series.)

Research. Fun, fun research. I got on ebay and bought magazines from 1974. I am the proud owner of a full year of Gourmet plus many, many Vogues, Glamours, Cosmos (oh, my) and Architectural Digests. Looking at those ads and reading those articles was amazing.

And Pinterest – I LOVE Pinterest. My board for The Deep End ( captures the clothes, the vibe and the original Mr. Coffee.

Q-How long do you expect this series to run, because I totally see a new “Cabot Cove” mystery series here! 

I’m hoping The Country Club Murders finds an audience and that Ellison has the opportunity to solve lots of murders.

Q-When is the next story due/what’s the title/can you give us a couple of sentences on the plot?

Guaranteed to Bleed (remember the madras labels?) will release in November. When Ellison finds a dying boy beneath the stands at a high school football game, her life is again upended. Now she’s dealing with a teenage daughter with an attitude, an unexpected house guest and another body on her lawn.

Q-Why stretch out the love triangle between your heroine and two yummy men?

Could you decide between Hunter and Anarchy? Ellison is recently widowed, she’s not ready to make up her mind.

Q-You also have other novels in the works—are they cozy mysteries in 1st person too?

My novel, A Haunting Desire, which was a finalist in the 2014 Golden Heart contest is a romance. It releases in August from Entangled Select. It’s not written in the first person, but there is a murder mystery which my heroine solves. The story is set in New Orleans in 1902 – think voodoo, ghosts, plenty of eerie ambiance and a yummy hero.

Q-On a personal note, what’s a food you cannot say no to?

Bread pudding with crème anglaise

Q-Favorite movie and why?

One? Yikes! Casablanca because I never get tired of watching Rick change from a cynical ass into a hero. Romancing the Stone because I love watching Joan Wilder transform into a strong woman.

Q-What’s your favorite ’70’s song?

Again, one? You’re So Vain by Carly Simon. I’d like to title a book Clouds in my Coffee. Who can hear that song and not sing along? I also love You’re in my Heart by Rod Stewart for the chorus: You’re in my heart, you’re in my soul. You’ll be my breath should I grow old. You are my lover, you’re my best friend. You’re in my soul. Isn’t that how we all want to be loved?

Which ’70s songs do you love and why? Julie is giving one lucky commenter a $10 Amazon gift card! Stop by next Tuesday to see if it’s YOU!

Back cover blurb.

Swimming into the lifeless body of her husband’s mistress tends to ruin a woman’s day, but becoming a murder suspect can ruin her whole life.

It’s 1974 and Ellison Russell’s life revolves around her daughter and her art. She’s long since stopped caring about her cheating husband, Henry, and the women with whom he entertains himself. That is, until she becomes a suspect in Madeline Harper’s death. The murder forces Ellison to confront her husband’s proclivities and his crimes—kinky sex, petty cruelties and blackmail.

As the body count approaches par on the seventh hole, Ellison knows she has to catch a killer. But with an interfering mother, an adoring father, a teenage daughter, and a cadre of well-meaning friends demanding her attention, can Ellison find the killer before he finds her.

Find out more about Julie HERE:


About Sarah Andre

Romantic Suspense That Keeps You Up All Night! I live in sunny FL, love daydreaming, reading and chocolate. I write in the wee hours of the morning before my helpless hubby and 2 male Pomeranian pups awaken with their demands. :) My debut LOCKED, LOADED and LYING is available now.

Posted on February 17, 2015, in Author Interview, Sarah Andre and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 82 Comments.

  1. Welcome, Julie. What a fun idea, setting your book in the 70’s. Love the concept. (Great post Sarah!)

    • Lena, The Deep End was a fun book to write. Think a 1974 playlist, researching fashion prior to disco and remembering things like Bonne Bell Lip Smackers. Thanks so much for taking time to comment!

    Let’s see- my fav 70’s song (NOT Dreamweaver by Garry Wright- you may not remember how much I fought that.) 😉

    I think I can narrow it down to the Eagles: “One of These Nights”, “Witchy Woman” or anything on the Hotel California album.

    Sigh…now I have the urge to go listen to them. 🙂

    Have a splen-fabulistic day. Yes, I DID just made that up. Looks like it’s going to be a good writing day.

    • Sarah – thanks so much for having me. I have another favorite song to add to my list – At Seventeen by Janis Ian, She sang it on the debut episode of SNL in 1975. As for that Garry Wright song, I’ll shudder with you – but Dream Weavers are a totally different story. 😉

      • You know, back when Janis Ian debuted the song I HATED it. I wasn’t close to being 17, but I already knew I was the girl she described. UGH! Had to turn it off every time. Now when I hear it I can’t help the nostalgic smile. I definitely did become that girl and every word she sang was true. 😦 🙂

        But look at me now…and she laughed her way to the bank. So…go ugly ducklings!

  3. Hi Julie, what a great story. How about Superstition by Stevie Wonder? What kind of mischief could Ellison find if that was her earworm? Good luck and happy release day!

  4. Very excited for your release! I loved this book. I thought it was just perfect. As for the music of the 70s, here I will make my confession. I spun and swirled around my living room playing the Bee Gees’ Saturday Night Fever over and over. But I also adored Elton John, James Taylor, Seals and Crofts, and Rod Stewart (Maggie May!).

  5. So excited for you, Julie. I love to see Golden Heart sisters reaching their goals and living their dreams! I can’t wait to read The Deep End and it’s already downloaded and ready to go!

    But I have to admit I don’t remember any ’70s songs. I don’t think I started paying attention to music until the mid-eighties. 🙂

  6. I’m assuming your book magically showed up on my kindle over night! Can’t wait to read. I love a good mystery.

    As far as songs…Seven Bridges Road by The Eagles? But, I’ll admit I didn’t discover the Eagles until I was older. Is Air Supply 70s or 80s? Definitely Olivia Newton John. I hope I’m close to hitting the right decade.

    • Laura – you are too funny! And yes, The Deep End should be on your kindle. Olivia Newton John wanted folks to get mellow in the early seventies, then she met John Travolta. After that, in the eighties, she wanted to get physical. As for Air Supply *shakes head* eighties all the way.

      • Thanks for stopping by, Laura. I also think ‘Seven Bridges Road’ is from the early 80s, but the fact that it’s an Eagles song gets you 2 thumbs up!

        Thanks for reminding me- gotta go open my Kindle. I love to see books download. It’s like magic!

  7. There is really only one 70’s song…. STAYIN’ ALIVE by the Bee Gees…. 🙂

  8. Congratulations Julie! I’m so thrilled and so proud for you today. I remember the first time I read your pages. I consumed them, and then sat there in compete awe. You are a fabulous writer and now the rest of the world will find out what I knew from the moment I laid eyes on your work.

    Oh, and my favorite song from the 70s? The Bitch is Back by Elton John. 😉

    • Leigh – my children might tell you that The Bitch is Back is my theme song.

    • Haven’t met you, Leigh, but we have 2 things in common. I also sat there in shock after reading Julie’s fabulous pages AND I’d forgotten that song. Yep, one of my fav’s. Janis Ian’s depression in my teens, and ‘The Bitch is Back’ in my…er…grown up years.

  9. Congratulations, Julie!! This book sound awesome! I can’t wait to read it. 🙂

    Stairway to Heaven is my favorite 70s song.

    • Marnee – that’s just awesome. Perhaps you can explain to me why there’s a bustle in the hedgerow…?

      • DUDE! (2 lovers making out…shaking the bushes…?)
        OK…I confess…IDK. The band was obviously high while writing those lyrics…that should have been today’s question. What the heck does that mean? 😉

        Thanks for stopping by, Marnee- A+ on the song choice!

  10. Julie, this books sounds amazing!!!!!! Mega congrats on your success, and I can’t wait to read it (along with your other books!) Great interview, Sarah!

  11. Happy, happy release day, Julie! I am so looking forward to the rest of the series as well. And again, I can’t stop crushing on your cover!

    Being a child of the 70s who grew up in Sweden, I was raised on a steady diet of Abba. We even role-played as the band members on the playground. All of their hits are stuck in my head. I’m also a big fan of “Killing Me Softly” by Roberta Flack, although technically I didn’t discover the song until the 80s. 🙂

  12. I love this song, Longer, by Dan Fogelberg. My husband and I picked it as our wedding song decades later. 😊

    Such a fun interview! Great work Sarah. So glad to see you here Julie .

  13. Welcome to Kiss and Thrill, Julie! The book sounds fabulous!

    The first albums I remember listening to over and over were Tapestry by Carole King and Shaun Cassidy by Shaun Cassidy. I still have Tapestry on both 78 and CD.

  14. Congrats on your release, Julie!!! I can’t wait to read it.

    I love music from the 70s, and stole (permanently “borrowed”) most of my dad’s records. I like later songs by the Beatles, Carole King, Cat Stevens, gee, do I have to pick just one?? 😉

  15. So exciting to see this book a reality! I was lucky enough to be in critique group with Julie and hear this book from the beginning. When she brought in the first chapter, I was blown away. This book and the second book in the series are awesome. Congratulations, Julie!!! Good job!!

  16. I realize I’m recovering from pneumonia, but that icon doesn’t look like me. Maybe the green color…

  17. The book looks like a good one. And who here hasn’t sang, Highway to Heaven at the top of their lungs while flying down the highway as the wind blows in from the open windows? Yeah, me neither, nope never happened

  18. Love the sound of this new series! Where is The Deep End set? My favorite 70s song…Landslide by Fleetwood Mac

  19. I also love THE DEEP END, Julie! Congratulations!! The song that immediately transports me to the ’70s is Wildfire by Michael Martin Murphy. I loved that song. Still do. 😉

  20. I absolutely love your cover! (Not sure if I told you that yet, but I do!)
    Hmm…I love disco and funk. One of my favorite CDs is Pure Funk. Trust story. So I’m going to go with a song called “Flashlight.” It’s just a fun song.

  21. What is wrong with you all? No soul music listed here so far. Impossible to choose the best, but Al Green, Gladys Knight, anything by the Stylistics, Barry White, Bill Wither’s Lean on Me, The Temps and Commodores? Right up there for best has to be You’ll Never Find Another Love Like Mine by Lou Rawls.

    And I can’t wait to read the book, Julie. Congrats! (Hope I find at least one soul tune there.)

    • Yeah, you can tell most of us were not very deep that young! Thanks for commenting, Alfie- report back if you find a soul song once you’ve read THE DEEP END. 😉

    • Alfie, not going to argue Lou Rawls but if we’re thinking soul, I choose Me and Mrs. Jones by Billy Paul.

  22. So so happy for you Julie!
    Enjoy your debut book birthday.

    70s songs – would have to be Jesus Christ Super Star – the whole album! and I loved Carole King – so let’s go with “You Make Me Feel Like A Natural Woman”

  23. Cannot wait to read this book! Congratulations to Julie. 🙂 Soooo many great 70’s songs– one of my favorites is Billy Joel’s She’s Got a Way. It must be amazing to have someone write words like that about you.

  24. Welcome to K&T, Julie! What a great cover and a fun premise. Like Sharon, I didn’t have strong music preferences until the early 80s when I found alternative rock (mixed in with everything else on the Top 40 station). But I do remember getting It’s A Heartache by Bonnie Tyler stuck in my head. And I have fond memories of just about anything from the Steve Miller Band’s Fly Like An Eagle album or Supertramp’s Breakfast in America album from long drives in the car with my parents. Happy release day!

  25. Excellent interview, Julie!! I loved hearing more about your release and diving a little deeper into who you are! Congrats!

  26. Well…WOW, Julie! What a great showing to cheer on your change of status to: MADE IT.

    We wish you the best of luck in sales, and thoroughly enjoyed discussing 70’s songs! Thank you for being with us- please come back when GUARANTEED TO BLEED comes out!

    • Sarah – it’s a date! And guess what? The release date has been moved to early October! Thanks so much for having me – it has been a tremendous fun!

  27. Wow! What a fun concept. And after that recommendation from Sarah, you can bet I’ll be downloading The Deep End. Congrats on your debut!

  28. I’m late with my comments but wanted to say I can’t wait to read the book. They have the best authors and books here at K&T. Thank you all.

    As for me I loved the BeeGees, Eagles and dare I say..The Captain and Tenille.

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