Butterflies Don't Sting
by Linda Reynolds & Joy Goodale


Vantage Press, 2007. ISBN 978-0-533-15698-6.
Reviewed by Donna Van Straten Remmert
Posted on 12/28/2007

Fiction: Mystery

Butterflies Don't Sting is a delightful little whodunit that you can relax with by imagining yourself as a guest at the Butterfly Spa, wearing the uniform that's provided, a brightly colored floral muumuu suitable for all sizes and shapes. Underwear is optional; the spa's objective is to help guests rid themselves of all inhibitions.

Guests range from a prominent politician's wife to a religious fanatic to an aging movie star. They are all suspects in the murder of the Swedish masseuse, including the woman who called Sheriff Nail to report the crime, Rowena Grigsby, owner of a bed and breakfast in a neighboring town. Rowena calls her cousin Dolly to help her defend herself. Sheriff Nail (whose first name, to his embarrassment, is Rusty) is taken in by her charms and decides to let the two women help him solve the mystery of who among the guests is a murderer. Never mind the fact that Rowena is a suspect—Sheriff Nail needs all the help he can get, since his typical daily challenge for all his years as sheriff of small-town Tyra, Texas, has been whether to order the Blue Plate Special for lunch at the local café.

But now this: A murder! Rowena and Dolly sniff through guest rooms on the sly while Sheriff Nail interviews the nervous and affronted guests, all claiming impeccable reputations and innocence. As you read, you'll snicker, giggle, and laugh aloud while trying to guess which guest at the "swanky" Butterfly Spa committed the crime.

The authors of this rollicking novel are sisters, born and raised Texans. Their tongue-in-cheek "proper southern lady" humor is so smooth that I'm sure it comes naturally.


Linda Reynolds considers herself a late bloomer. At the age of sixty-one, she graduated summa cum laude from Saint Edwards University, with her ninety-one-year-old mother in attendance at the graduation. Ms. Reynolds traveled extensively in Europe during ten years she spent in London. She has two married sons and two grandchildren.

Joy Goodale is a graduate of the University of Houston. She has lived and worked in Houston, Texas all her life, starting her career in banking and ending up in the construction field as a contract administrator for developers. Ms. Goodale has one married son.

(See another review of this book, here)

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