Voodoo Butterfly (Vodoo Butterfly #1)


“Voodoo Butterfly” opens with twenty-year-old Sophia examining a box of oddities on the day of her mother’s funeral. Her hope is that someone from her past will show up at the funeral and explain the enigmatic woman who gave her life, but no one comes. Five years later, a letter arrives addressed to Sophia's mother.  Sophie's grandmother has died and left her mother (and now Sophia) a voodoo shop in New Orleans. Sophia packs up and heads to The Big Easy excited to find something out about her family. 


This suspenseful paranormal pulls the reader in from the first paragraph with the box filled with a corncob pipe, a preserved Monarch butterfly, and a glass eye. The vivid imagery of New Orleans almost feels like a travelogue from various mentions of traditional food and drink favorites to various landmarks. The tight writing and underlying menace will keep most readers up past their bedtimes reading. Taj as the love interest is sweet and appealing. Their beginning romance is adorable, but continuation is harder to accept because he acts more like a doormat than a man would.

This is an excellent debut novel, but some contrived elements kept it from reaching its potential. One is Jacques, who is exactly like the legend, but no one recognizes his darkness. Another is the insistence of going everywhere on foot at night despite declaring the streets dangerous. All the practicing witches and voodoo masters seem to have no intuitive skills.  Hard to believe, especially as they are Marie Laveau’s descendants.

It is an enjoyable read that should delight paranormal fans. 

Morgan Stamm