The Mama Tree by Trisha O'Keefe
The Mama Tree lives in the Thicket, a place so wild it hides all kinds of creatures who don’t want to be seen. Prayer bundles and gris-gris bags dangle from its matronly branches like ornaments on a mother goddess. It has hidden Kenya and her disfigured face until, healed by the loving care of her grandmother, she emerges again, morphed into Chantal West, the sexy R&B Princess of Memphis. Her triumph is shattered when the body of her childhood friend Holly Simpson is found in a dumpster. Could the fresh tattoo on the body possibly be a caricature of her killer? Kenya has hit many bumps on the road of life, and even some ditches, but there are no air bags for this one. Detective Grover Moss knows in one millisecond that this crazy, beautiful woman is the love he is looking for and, in the next millisecond, that she will be the cartoon killer’s next victim unless Moss finds him first.