Walter Mosley again demonstrates his incredible ability to recreate hard-boiled detective fiction in a fresh and original manner, but without quite the explosive shock produced by _Devil in a Blue Dress_. Perhaps Easy has simply mellowed a bit with age and marriage, but he seems neither as driven nor as angry as before. The plot twist hinges on sex again, but somehow the revelation is less believable than in Mosley's debut. Fortunately, these problems are counterbalanced by glorious writing and characters. In particular, Raymond "Mouse" Alexander--either the best or worst sidekick a detective could have--is back and in great zoot-suited, woman-chasing, enemy-demolishing form. Mosley's careful depiction of Easy's ambivalent dependence on, love for, and disgust with Mouse is a wonder of characterization. While _White Butterfly_ lacks the edge that made Mosely's previous work soar above all other detective fiction on the market, it's still an addictive, delightful page-turner, and in terms of atmosphere, Mosley is still better than any other writer.