If well-plotted, American, fast-paced, whodunnit froth is your thing then you’ll love this one. Penny Francisco certainly didn’t enjoy watching ‘the other woman’ paint her former beautiful Victorian house bright pink, but it wasn’t enough to make her bludgeon her ex-husband’s head and stab him repeatedly in the chest. Unfortunately that’s exactly the fate he met that night, not long after Penny jokingly did the same to a voodoo doll in his image at her divorce party, witnessed by many.
Penny runs her own health food store in Mojo, Louisiana, which is a little town that gets pretty crowded during the annual Voodoo Festival when the aficionados come to town, with dolls, snakes and sacrificial chickens. Another thing hotting up Penny’s hometown is private investigator BJ, who believes Penny didn’t do it and tries to help- of course this being a Stephanie Bond, they are often distracted my their smoking chemistry.
Kooks for your Kindle?– What makes this a good whodunnit is that there are many tertiary characters, all of whom have suspicion cast upon them at some point, even if it’s just a hint. I was glad not to have guessed the answer. The end result left most of these characters still with a little mystery, and as there is already a sequel, we know why. Highlights include the aforementioned other woman, tarty Sheena, a walking advertisement for her own tanning shop; Guy, Penny’s sexually confused shop assistant; and Mona, Penny’s vindictive former mother-in-law and town Mayor, which gives her ample opportunities to mess with Penny’s business.
The Bella-Swan-Pathetically-Self-Sacrificing-Factor– Penny’s no pushover, and not above a bit of vindictiveness herself when the urge takes her, but on the whole she’s trying to move on after a painful betrayal and get her life back on track. Thankfully she doesn’t rely on man alone (BJ) to rescue her, and does her own digging to help clear her name.
Painting a picture for your paperback?– It’s surprisingly atmospheric, the claustrophobic nature of the small town with everything in sight or at least in walking distance, and especially the voodoo festival. The sounds and smells of the nightly events are brought to life vividly and the Instruments of Death and Voodoo Museum next to Penny’s shop is suitably eerie. Despite the quintessential readable frothiness of the book, there are dark forces at work, and some disturbing bits. Let’s just say it did nothing to quell my fear of snakes…
Nookie for your Nook?– But of course!
Evaluation of your eBook?– It’s a quickie; it only took me three or four hours to devour it (but I do read horribly fast, it gets expensive…). If it wasn’t for the snake thing, it would make me want to head for the steamy cajun south and have some yummy fried food. All in all it’s an absorbing, light, fun, spooky read with lots of intriguing, possibly murderous characters. Not too pricey either.
Frothy Ranking: 4/5 cocktails.
Can be obtained from:
UK: £1.92 on Amazon.
US: $2.99 from Amazon