From time to time Auntie M sneaks off the crime fiction curve and brings you something different. This time it’s a mystery of sorts, revolving around a real life events belonging to journalist and former HarperCollins publicist Jessica Barraco, which she recounts in The Butterfly Groove:


The Reasoning Behind My Research for The Butterfly Groove: A Mother’s Mystery, A Daughter’s Journey
By Jessica Barraco

As a journalist, my training has revolved around knowing the truth. A lot of people like to say that journalists are too curious, that they like to expose people or situations, they can’t let sleeping dogs lie. A true journalist will counter: “But that is what life is about: facing the music.” If you are afraid to see reality, evolving as a person will prove to be very difficult.

My mother passed away when I was 12 years old after an almost 20-year long battle with cancer and its devastating complications. In her life, she was a very private person, and when she died, many rumors came up, mostly all negative about her childhood and teenage years. She wanted to be a writer, but never had the opportunity to receive a proper education. On so many levels: spiritually, emotionally and professionally, I felt it was only fair to my mom to find out the truth about her life; the life she had before she was sick. I was the only one in my family who was interested in learning my mother’s truths, and that made it a lonely journey. Until I researched, found and met all of the wonderfully open strangers who helped me create this book, and ultimately, to put the pieces together of the mystery that was my mom.

I did for my mom what I hope anyone would do for me. I chose to not believe whatever distorted memories and passed down information her relatives claimed to know about her. I chose not to believe anything at face value. Believing gossip is the easy thing to do. I chose the harder path – the path that leads to the truth.

I hope you’ll join me on my journey and get to know both me and my mom a little better in The Butterfly Groove.

Comments/questions? Interested in having your book club read my book? Feel free to reach me at and I will be happy to help in any way.

Indie Bound is available too.

Journalist by heart, marketing professional by day, and writer by moonlight, Jessica Barraco is a graduate of the University of Colorado, Boulder’s School of Journalism and Mass Communication. She published her first newspaper article at nineteen years old, after which she wrote for 944 magazine and The Denver Post. She also spent three years working at HarperCollins Publishers across all of its imprints, working on both nonfiction and fiction books. A contributor to EliteDaily and marketing professional, Barraco resides in California.