Feed from Malcolm's
Website for author Malcolm R. Campbell
When some white boys rape and murder a black girl named Mattie near the sawmill, the police have no suspects and don’t intend to find any. According to tradition, any white man could rape any black woman without consequences, much less condemnation.
Eulalie, who sees conjure as a way of helping the good Lord work His will, intends to set things right by “laying tricks.” But Eulalie has secrets of her own, and it’s hard not to look back on her own life and ponder how the decisions she made while drinking and singing at the local juke were, perhaps, the beginning of Mattie’s ending.
Washerwoman knows how to cover his tracks with the magic he learned from Florida's most famous root doctor, Uncle Monday. He's more illusive than hen's teeth, more dangerous than the Klan, and threatens to brutally remove any obstacle in the way of his profits. He runs the local policy gambling rackets--and about everything else with the consent and cooperation of the police, mayor, and upstanding white movers and shakers.
In this follow up to Conjure Woman's Cat, Eulalie and Lena face their greatest challenge with scarce support from townspeople who are scared of their own shadows.
Spiritual Information is an excellent blog written by a long-time conjure practitioner
While she was forced to retire last year due to ill health, her blog has been left online as a resource.
If you scroll down, you'll find an index of articles on the left side of the screen. There's a great archive here for those who want to learn more about folk magic.
When Police Chief Alton Gravely and Officer Carothers escalate the feud between “Torreya’s finest” and conjure woman Eulalie Jenkins by running her off the road into a north Florida swamp, the borrowed pickup truck is salvaged but Eulalie is missing and presumed dead. Her cat Lena survives. Lena could provide an accurate account of the crime, but the county sheriff is unlikely to interview a pet.
Lena doesn’t think Eulalie is dead, but the conjure woman’s family and friends don’t believe her. Eulalie’s daughter Adelaide wants to stir things up, and the church deacon wants everyone to stay out of sight. There’s talk of an eyewitness, but either Adelaide made that up to worry the police, or the witness is too scared to come forward.
When the feared Black Robes of the Klan attack the first responder who believes the wreck might have been staged, Lena is the only one who can help him try to fight them off. After that, all hope seems lost, because if Eulalie is alive and finds her way back to Torreya, there are plenty of people waiting to kill her and make sure she stays dead.
The Florida Folk Magic series is set in the fictional town of Torreya 53 miles west of Tallahassee in the "other-Florida" world of the panhandle of the 1950s when the Ku Klux Klan, police officers, church elders, city fathers, and your next door neighbor were hard to tell apart. The sunshine state advertised itself as a playground and that's what northern snowbirds saw. Residents, especially African Americans, saw it as a world of terror.