A Mind for Murder Mystery, No 1
Berkley Prime Crime
November 2011/ 978-0-425-24459-3
by Laura Hinds
Liz Cooper is very rational minded. Perhaps that is because of her
chosen profession. On the other hand, perhaps she is that way in
rebellion against her mother’s use of tarot cards. Liz is
divorced, loves her work, and cherishes her friends. Robin Bloom
is her best friend; they’ve known each other since grade school.
Robin is a widow, and when someone starts leaving evil looking tarot
cards at her door, she freaks out. They are the same three cards
that Liz’s mother read for Josh, Robin’s late husband,
the day before he died.
for Collins Talent, reporting directly to the owner, Sam Collins.
As a perk she has access to backstage concert passes for her friends.
Because he is an occult expert, Liz contacts her brother’s
college buddy, Nick Garfield to ask what he might be able to learn
about the unusual tarot cards. They are happy to be reacquainted
and Nick attends a concert with Liz. Things take an unexpected turn
for the worse when Sam’s young girlfriend, Sophie, is killed
in the parking lot when the after-party ends. Sophie had fought
with Robin, and before long, Robin is in police custody as a suspect
in Sophie’s murder. Naturally, Liz will do everything she
can to help her friend-including entering the world of voodoo to
help find the real killer. You see, Sophie was apparently invovled
in the voodoo scene. With Nick by her side, she tries to decipher
clues, and as days go by, their mutual attraction is what becomes
clearer than anything.
This is a great
first novel for Rachelle Staab. As the voodoo elements of the story
came into play, I was surprised to find myself drawn into learning
more about it. Staab writes in a careful manner; very clearly explaining
the types of voodoo without talking down to the readers.
are all interesting and believable. Liz’s mother is a hot-ticket.
She reads tarot cards, she insists on calling Liz’s brother
“your brother Dave,” as if Liz wouldn’t know her
own brother’s name, and is constantly meddling to get Liz
reunited with her ex-husband, the no-good Jarret. Liz is smart and
loyal, and Nick is smart and sexy. There are many more interesting
folks in this book, but you’ll have to read it for yourself
to meet them.
voodoo magic, curses, and hexes abound in this book. Add in some
humor, sexy romance and very likeable characters and you have a
great read. I read it in two sittings and enjoyed every word. If
you are looking for a clever and unique new series to read, I recommend
you get a copy of this book right away. The next in the series,
“Bruja Brouhaha,” will be out next summer.