Wednesday 20 December 2017

#BookReview The Illusionist's Apprentice by Kristy Cambron @TNZFiction

The Illusionist's Apprentice by Kristy Cambron
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Harry Houdini’s one-time apprentice holds fantastic secrets about the greatest illusionist in the world. But someone wants to claim them . . . or silence her before she can reveal them on her own.

Boston, 1926. Jenny “Wren” Lockhart is a bold eccentric—even for a female vaudevillian. As notorious for her inherited wealth and gentleman’s dress as she is for her unsavory upbringing in the back halls of a vaudeville theater, Wren lives in a world that challenges all manner of conventions.

In the months following Houdini’s death, Wren is drawn into a web of mystery surrounding a spiritualist by the name of Horace Stapleton, a man defamed by Houdini’s ardent debunking of fraudulent mystics in the years leading up to his death. But in a public illusion that goes terribly wrong, one man is dead and another stands charged with his murder. Though he’s known as one of her teacher’s greatest critics, Wren must decide to become the one thing she never wanted to be: Stapleton’s defender.

Forced to team up with the newly formed FBI, Wren races against time and an unknown enemy, all to prove the innocence of a hated man. In a world of illusion, of the vaudeville halls that showcase the flamboyant and the strange, Wren’s carefully constructed world threatens to collapse around her.

Layered with mystery, illusion, and the artistry of the Jazz Age’s bygone vaudeville era, The Illusionist’s Apprentice is a journey through love and loss and the underpinnings of faith on each life’s stage.


I have to admit that it was the mentioning of Harry Houdini that got me interested in this book. And, I'm glad I read the book, despite, the story taking place after Houdini's death. I found the story to be interesting and engaging, although the obvious romantic side story really didn't interest me that much. 

Still, I was charmed by Wren Lockhart, and I found her to be a fabulous character. I especially liked the flashbacks to when she was younger, where we see what a terrible upbringing she had and how she came to work for Harry Houdini when she turned 16. I found the writing to be very good, and the characters came to life.

I quite liked the case. The mysterious "death" of a man raised from the dead with a note in his pocket with both Wren and Harry's real name that hinted that the "killer" wanted Wren involved. But why? This aspect of the book was great, I just wish the romantic part had been a bit toned down. Not that I disliked the romantic part, I just felt that I was more interested in the case, and Wren's part with Houdini. Still, it's a good book, and I wouldn't mind reading more books about Wren (and Houdini).

I want to thank the publisher for providing me with a free copy through NetGalley for an honest review!

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