The Illusionist’s Apprentice is a story that drew me into the world of vaudeville in the 1920’s with a female illusionist who once was apprenticed to Harry Houdini himself and finds herself caught up in an investigation with the still new FBI. There were many layers to this story and the author skillfully drew back the curtain, so to speak, so that we could get the truth that lay behind the prop of illusions and lies that the characters in the book hid behind. The difference between magic vs illusion and spiritualism vs faith were well woven into this novel with truths that effortlessly shown through.
Wren is an interesting character, she seemed so fragile to me yet she was her own boss and a great entertainer. She hides her past and who she truly is behind her illusions and the persona she has created, even in the men’s getup in clothing she wears. She has an air of mystery about her that intrigues FBI agent Elliot to find a crack in her veneer and meet the true Wren. And Elliot is very protective in a good way yet willing to let Wren be true to her own nature. What a hero, sigh.
I haven't read too many books during this time period but it was an interesting one. Prohibition was in full force, World War 1 and the Spanish Influenza was still fresh in people’s minds, yet the country was moving forward with new ideas and inventions. What I really like about Kristy’s writing is that she pulled me in not only into the story but the atmosphere that she has so vividly described. Whether it is the workings behind the big top circus or in this newest one the world of vaudeville that Harry Houdini was a part of, thus allowing the time period to become a character all its own. Due to this, Kristy’s stories stand out and they remain quite memorable to me. I also count it as a bonus to learn some new historical facts as well.
Filled with intrigue, mystery, a sense of foreboding, and a tender romance, this is a story I will not soon forget. I received a copy of this book for free. I was not required to give a positive review and the views and opinions expressed are my own.