As New Orleans prepares for two huge celebrations, the DiscordaCon horror convention and the Galleries & Gourmet celebration, Carmela Bertrand finds her business busier than usual. Owner of Memory Mine scrapbooking shop, Carmela and her best friend Ava Gruiex, owner of Juju Voodoo are commissioned to convert an old mansion into a haunted house in time for the convention.
The Medusa Manor conversion project is the brainstorm of Melody Mayfeldt. When Carmela and Ava arrive at Medusa Manor to meet with Melody, they are horrified when her flaming body crashes through the window of one of the towers and lands at their feet. Carmela swears she will never forget the haunting scream that accompanied the fall.
At the urging of Melody’s silent partner, Olivia Wainwright, the two forge ahead with the transformation of the mansion in her memory.
Meanwhile, Carmela is in the midst of finalizing her rancorous divorce from Seamus after three long years. Unfortunately, his sister Gloria is determined to have her say in the result of the proceedings.
Detective Edgar Babcock, Carmela’s significant other, believes that the prime suspect in Melody’s death is her husband Garth who owns Fire and Ice, a high-end jewelry store. Due to severe money problems and a recent insurance policy Garth took out on Melody, his name keeps rising to the top of the suspect list.
There are plenty of other suspects to go around, and quite a cast of quirky characters in this sixth installment of the successful Scrapbooking Mystery series authored by Laura Childs. She also authored the popular Tea Shop Mysteries. Tragic Magic provides plenty of suspense and tense moments as Carmela and Ava struggle to complete the eerie project in time for DiscordaCon.
New Orleans is an excellent setting for this creepy cozy. The Big Easy is still struggling to come back from the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, but the citizens are full of energy and excited about the upcoming festivities. Childs provides plenty of atmosphere and is adept at using the city as a backdrop.
Child’s also provides plenty of recipes and scrapbooking tips throughout the book with a special section at the end with more scrapbooking, stamping, and craft tips. Cozy mystery fans will be delighted by this latest offering in the much-loved series.