RARA-AVIS: Review: VOODOO THAT YOU DO by Richard Helms

From: Bludis Jack ( buildsnburns@yahoo.com)
Date: 26 Feb 2002

VOODOO THAT YOU DO By Richard Helms Trade Paperback, 325pp. Back Alley Books

Richard Helms's nice-guy protagonist, Pat Gallegher, witnesses the murder of his friend and finds himself drawn back into a life he thought was behind him.

Because of a kind of blackmail by the local Mafia boss, he finds himself trying to track down the killer of his friend Hotshot Spano. This takes him into the various elements of the New Orleans underworld including not just the Mafia, but the invading Vietnamese and the long-entrenched darkness of Voodoo.

Along the way, Gallegher tries to save a little girl from her abusive, organized crime-connected father, while developing a relationship with a an attractive director of a local runaway shelter.

Helms takes us through the back streets of New Orleans and the backwaters of the Louisiana Bayou. He dips us into the cult of Voudan
(Voodoo) and he introduces us to the sometimes-insensitive child custody courts.
  In one scene, which I think is particularly strong he has a one-on-one confrontation with an investigating officer who just won't stay off his back.

Gallegher struggles with danger not only to himself, but to those he cares for, but he gets the job done and all is again right with the world.

VOODOO THAT YOU DO is an excellent read, complete with not just interesting characters and a colorfully painted background, but with a well-constructed story and strong emotional involvement.

An excellent read.

Jack Bludis

===== THE BIG SWITCH, by Jack Bludis http://designimagegroup.com/bigswitch.html Coming in September, THE DEAL KILLER

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