Black Dust Mambo is a dark and sultry tale. Set in New Orleans during May Madness Carnival (think Spring Break for people with magical abilities), Black Dust Mambo has just the right amount of mystery and magic to keep me reading late into the night. Imagine…the partying, the debauchery…a young woman’s first May Madness Carnival…all kinds of fun. And murder, black magic style. Kallie Riviere wakes up to find her companion for the evening very dead. The victim’s best friend Layne Valin accuses Kallie of murder. When Valin touches the corpse, he dies too. Kallie manages to resuscitate him and they work together to find the killer. Some interesting facts about our heroine: Kallie spends a good portion of the book in her underwear, almost the entire first half. No, it’s not THAT kind of book. Kallie also punches first and asks questions later. I can’t recall how many people Kallie punched, but it was enough that I did make note of it. The magic in Black Dust Mambo is fascinating. There were hexes, poppets, divinations, and more. Kallie’s magical abilities remain a mystery, especially her strength to resist compulsion. I also liked Valin’s magical ability. Valin is a vessel, a person that can host spirits so that they can communicate with the living. Kallie’s best friend Belladonna is a mambo, a voodoo princess. I enjoyed the interactions between the characters, especially their ability to poke fun at each other. I think that this book would have benefitted from a glossary of terms. A lot of creole words are thrown into the story and a glossary would have been beneficial to people who do not have a knowledge of French. Cliffhanger alert: This book ends on a pretty intense cliffhanger. Thankfully book 2 Black Heart Loa is already published.Favorite quotes:“Felicity Fields sounds like the name of a Bond Babe.”“Men. A little juju, a little wormwood, a near death, and they curled up like salted slugs.”“You really must stop punching people. Have you considered anger management or a twelve-step program for quick fisted pugilists?”Review posted on Badass Book Reviews.