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Week Two: In Anticipation of HNR’s Joe R. Lansdale Appreciation Day, ‘Mucho Mojo’ Review


Written by: Wayne C. Rogers

The second novel in the Hap Collins/Leonard Pine series by Joe R. Lansdale is Mucho Mojo. The title basically translates into bad magic or evil, while the story itself deals with the actual evil that human beings are capable of perpetrating.

The novel begins when Leonard’s Uncle Chester passes away and leaves his house and a hundred thousand dollars to his nephew. Leonard decides to stay in his uncle’s house in order to fix it up and talks Hap into moving in with him to help with the repairs. Everything is running smoothly until they rip up some old floorboards and discover a trunk beneath the house that has the bones of a murdered child in it, along with magazines of kiddy porn.

At first they think that Uncle Chester was the culprit who killed the child, but as they probe deeper into the mystery it soon becomes apparent that LaBorde, Texas has a serial killer living within its midst…a person who’s still alive and has been killing children for the last nine years. If that isn’t enough, next door to Leonard’s new home is a crack house, occupied by drug dealers who don’t particularly like their new neighbors, but do like selling drugs to kids.

This has all of the makings of a keg of black powder ready to explode; and, when it does, you definitely don’t want to be on the receiving end of Hap and Leonard’s anger! Needless to say, the East Texas duo will have their hands full as they do battle on two different fronts, taking names, kicking butt, and driving stakes into the hearts of the human monsters that are killing LaBorde’s children.

Mucho Mojo delivers the same powerful kick of outright fun and fabulous entertainment as the other books in this utterly addictive series, but there’s much more to this novel than meets the eye. Hap and Leonard have dealt with bad people and bad situations throughout most of their lives. This time around, however, they get a taste of what pure evil is like and have to question their own belief system about life, God, and the nature of being human. Neither one of them will come away untouched by what they encounter, knowing deep within themselves that sometimes people become evil by the circumstances of their lives, while others are simply born that way.  Whatever the reasons, these are dangerous predators that have to be taken out the hard way, even if it means becoming judge, jury, and executioner.

Mr. Lansdale’s writing is as smooth as melted butter being poured over hot popcorn, his skill at creating believable dialogue is matched only by Elmore Leonard and Stephen King, and his unique ability to weave a suspenseful story line with characters that live and breathe the East Texas air is simply unmatched. Pick up any of the Hap Collins/Leonard Pine novels, and you’ll quickly find yourself hooked on the writings of this remarkable author. This is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow for readers searching for that special kind of writer who, not only entertains us, but also causes us to think and question our own day-to-day living.

Rating: 5/5

About The Overseer (1669 Articles)
Author of Say No to Drugs, writer for Blumhouse, Dread Central, Horror Novel Reviews and Addicted to Horror Movies.

3 Comments on Week Two: In Anticipation of HNR’s Joe R. Lansdale Appreciation Day, ‘Mucho Mojo’ Review

  1. Enjoyed your review. I have read other reviews of yours and this one has given me an idea of where to start with the Hap and Leonard series. It shouldn’t be hard for me to find out which of them is the first one now.Thank you…as always..just me…vitina Molgaard


  2. Ouch…Sorry Mr. Rogers…sometimes I think I have spent to many hours on this computer…I just realized that you covered the first story of this series last weekend. So with that in mind…know full well I can sometimes feel redundant about what I have written. My apologies for the error in the above comment. I do not obviously need to find out what you have informed me of.Again thank you for your weekly lead up to Mr. Lansdale’s Day…as always …just me…vitina aka the old hippie…


  3. Wayne C. Rogers // March 3, 2013 at 4:29 am // Reply

    Nobody calls me Mr. Rogers (I still remember Mr. Rogers in his bowtie and sweater), but my former junior high school students. No apologies are necessary. Needless to say, I’m a big Joe Lansdale fan, especially of his Hap/Leonard series. Just picture Bruce Willis as a wise-ass Hap and Samuel L. Jackson as a gay Leonard, and you’re there. I sent a copy of Devil Red (the newest Hap/Leonard novel) to Bruce Willis’ production company, but Joe informed me the rights to the series has now been sold to television. Let us hope that television does the series justice.


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