Death by Roses

Death by Roses

by Vivian R. Probst

Paperback

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Overview

Death by Roses by Vivian R. Probst

For the first time in nearly thirty years of marriage, Art McElroy Sr. buys his headstrong, disapproving wife a dozen yellow roses. Hours later he discovers her lifeless body seated on the toilet. Mae Rose McElroy's sudden death leaves a void in her family and in the entire Midwestern farming community of Fairview. It's a void Mae Rose will attempt to fill, herself, from the hereafter by meddling directly in earthly affairs.

Mae Rose's meddling leads to her spiritual expulsion from heaven, and she winds up in the body of Mary Lee Broadmoor (Scary Mary), a crusty writer and director of exquisite horror movies. Mary Lee refuses to succumb to stage-4 pancreatic cancer until she gets one final shot at an elusive Oscar. Like Mae Rose, who argues with God for a return to earth, Mary Lee pleads, from her Hollywood deathbed, for more time to complete her work, as her hospice nurse, Gertie Morgan, looks on.

The two women's spirits work together, and Mae Rose provides her host with a new script idea: a love story, based on her life! The script earns Mary Lee her coveted Academy Award, but the movie's release shocks and disturbs Mae Rose's family. They set out to find, and confront, the woman who has somehow co-opted, and publicly revealed, their personal tragedy.

Along the way, new love emerges as the reader meets a caste of crazy, eccentric, but highly memorable characters. Death by Roses suggests that relationships don't end at death, but continue until their ultimate purpose is achieved. The universe has every resource at its disposal to get the job done. It also has an amazing sense of humor

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781590791486
Publisher: SelectBooks, Inc
Publication date: 02/14/2015
Pages: 320
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Ruth Theobald-Probst (pen name Vivian) is an author and entrepreneur, whose first novel, Death by Roses, explores her fascination with the comedic side of worldly and otherworldly events. Ruth has been writing fiction for the past 14 years, during which time she also has built a successful national consulting practice. Her company provides training to major investment firms that work in the affordable-housing industry.

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Death by Roses 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a nice read that provides a unique and creative approach to the afterlife, as well as makes you think about how you can be happier in life. This is done using interesting scenes and is not preachy. The book has many interesting characters.
GRgenius More than 1 year ago
A rose by any other name might still smell as sweet, but if you get the color wrong, you're asking for trouble...at least in the case of one, Mae Rose McElroy. What starts with Mae Rose and family continues with the cantankerous "Scary Mary" and her for the most part estranged daughter, leading us on a swirling whirlwind of self-discovery, illumination, and unexpected big screen success with a truth-is-stranger-than-fiction situation, and yet, I just couldn't muster much sympathy or empathy for with circumstances these ladies found themselves in. I will say this though...the ending, while not what I was expecting in the least, worked to reinforce the values learned along the way, and left things open enough for another potential adventure. All in all, a curious story with humor and life lessons along the way. It may not be for all, but it is definitely for some, and YOU might just be that audience-in-waiting it was seeking all along. Recommended for older teens through adults. **Copy was received from Lifemark Press; full post can be seen on my site...**
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book it probably the most depressing book I believe I've ever read. I am only 1/2 way through and I will not finish it. NO I did not find one bit of humor in the book, but I do think the author is enormously disturbed. IF that is her sense of humor, then thank goodness I am not associated with her.
gaele More than 1 year ago
A funny and unique mix that explores the afterlife and the choices made while alive, Vivian Probst uses multiple points of view, time  jumps and a touch of possession to tell her story.  Mae Rose is, at best, a “difficult’ woman: selfish, a bit unconcerned with others, strong willed and possessed of an acerbic wit that is at  times funny or flat, but usually imbued with a solid point.  Her relationship with her husband is most assuredly one of love, but tempered with the offhanded callousness so common in long-term acquaintances, while no great overt attempts are made to disparage one another, the moments of true tenderness are few and far between. Taking a chance, Art buys a dozen yellow roses for the first time in their marriage, as a ‘just because’ gift for Mae Rose, but hours later she dies in a pique, a la Elvis upon the commode.  Here is where the twists start: Mae Rose is given the ‘rules’ and they are clear. No Meddling. Her personality is incapable of following  directions, and she is expelled, to find herself in the body of Mary Lee – a horror film writer and director who is refusing to give in to her  illness without one more shot at the Oscar.  Another driven, headstrong and opinionated woman that is attempting to make fate and the  world bend to her will, Mae Rose’s expulsion thrusts her into Mary Lee, and the two need to coexist and even cooperate.  The unique exploration of afterlife, Mae Rose’s arguments with God to allow her return to the earthly plain, and the last opportunity for  the two women to learn and realize what is important keeps readers on their toes following each twist. Multiple points of view appear to  narrate the strory: Mae Rose, Mary Lee, Mae’s widower Art, Mary’s nurse Gertie: all of which add a layer to the story, but with some  choppy transitions and voices that aren’t always particularly distinctive, could be confusing if you aren’t following closely.  Some  moments border on farcical, while others hold surprising depth, layered in nuances that explore ‘life lessons’ as they just as easily  portray the fractured nature of ties to family and friends, there are plenty of moments that are laugh out loud funny, yet still carry that ring  of truth that cause further introspection from the reader.  An interesting story that presents a spin on the “what happens when I am gone” question that many have: not approached from the more  pious view, but a view that is human and all that encompasses: selfish, stubborn, heedless and close-mouthed, even as the true hearts  of both Mae and Mary are ultimately revealed.  I received a paperback copy of the title from Media Muscle / Book Trib for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.   
gaele More than 1 year ago
A funny and unique mix that explores the afterlife and the choices made while alive, Vivian Probst uses multiple points of view, time jumps and a touch of possession to tell her story.  Mae Rose is, at best, a “difficult’ woman: selfish, a bit unconcerned with others, strong willed and possessed of an acerbic wit that is at times funny or flat, but usually imbued with a solid point.  Her relationship with her husband is most assuredly one of love, but tempered  with the offhanded callousness so common in long-term acquaintances, while no great overt attempts are made to disparage one another, the moments of true tenderness are few and far between. Taking a chance, Art buys a dozen yellow roses for the first time in their marriage, as a ‘just because’ gift for Mae Rose, but hours later she dies in a pique, a la Elvis upon the commode.  Here is where the twists start: Mae Rose is given the ‘rules’ and they are clear. No Meddling. Her personality is incapable of following  directions, and she is expelled, to find herself in the body of Mary Lee – a horror film writer and director who is refusing to give in to her  illness without one more shot at the Oscar.  Another driven, headstrong and opinionated woman that is attempting to make fate and the world bend to her will, Mae Rose’s expulsion thrusts her into Mary Lee, and the two need to coexist and even cooperate.  The unique exploration of afterlife, Mae Rose’s arguments with God to allow her return to the earthly plain, and the last opportunity for  the two women to learn and realize what is important keeps readers on their toes following each twist. Multiple points of view appear to  narrate the strory: Mae Rose, Mary Lee, Mae’s widower Art, Mary’s nurse Gertie: all of which add a layer to the story, but with some choppy transitions and voices that aren’t always particularly distinctive, could be confusing if you aren’t following closely.  Some  moments border on farcical, while others hold surprising depth, layered in nuances that explore ‘life lessons’ as they just as easily  portray the fractured nature of ties to family and friends, there are plenty of moments that are laugh out loud funny, yet still carry that ring of truth that cause further introspection from the reader.  An interesting story that presents a spin on the “what happens when I am gone” question that many have: not approached from the more  pious view, but a view that is human and all that encompasses: selfish, stubborn, heedless and close-mouthed, even as the true hearts of both Mae and Mary are ultimately revealed.  I received a paperback copy of the title from Media Muscle / Book Trib for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.   
JeanDellamonica More than 1 year ago
It will make you laugh, cry and keep turning the pages! My daughter sent me this book as a gift and even though I was reading another book I picked it up and read the first few pages and WOW! I laughed out loud and couldn't wait to get to the rest of the story! I am an avid reader, reading everything from biographies to what I call "fluff" so I appreciate being captivated by an author - being SO charmed was a bonus. Death by Roses did not disappoint! It was delightful, funny, touching and profound. This book definitely has a message and I would venture to guess that the message will be different for everyone. It will appeal to all ages and all walks of life! I was so anxious to finish the book and yet when I finished I didn't want it to end! I will be waiting in line for the next book from this author!! It's a MUST read for everyone and I would be interested to find out what message this book tells YOU!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As the outlandish and oppositional personalities of May Rose McElroy and Mary Lee Broadmoor learn to share the same body, the reader is provided with an innovative and fresh approach to the nature of existence and life after death.  This light hearted comedy with its deeper undertones regarding life, love and the choices we make will give you a new perspective regarding the tapestry of your own life and the wisdom to live a life filled with love.  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is flat out amazing. Great characters, gripping plot and so much fun! Don't wait another day to experience a novel that is thought-provoking, entertaining and memorable.