Monday, November 30, 2015

The Magician's Lie by Greer Macallister + a Giveaway

Happy Monday, everyone! I hope you've recovered from Thanskgiving - I haven't. I have a new cookbook in hand for review and spent the entire weekend cooking randomly from it. I seriously want to cook the whole book! More on that later, though.

As part of the holiday festivities I signed on for the Thankfully Reading Weekend hosted by Jenn over at Jenn's Bookshelves. And while I maybe didn't read as much as I'd hoped over the long weekend, I did manage to finish a few books.

One of those was Greer Macallister's debut, The Magician's Lie, a book I'd been hearing fabulous things about all year long! Not only was this one of my recommendations from Anne Knows Books, it was also an October pick in Catherine McKenzie's 52 Weeks, 52 Books group over on Goodreads. So yeah, it's one I've been trying to squeeze in for a while and this weekend seemed like the perfect opportunity.

She's called the Amazing Arden but once upon a time she was Ada Bates, a girl who dreamed of a life on the stage. Sadly for Ada circumstances beyond her control seemed to be working against her. A chance to dance for one of the greats was ruined and Ada believed it to be the end of her dreams. 

But Ada isn't one to stand by and watch opportunity die, nor is she going to let her home life dictate her future. And when a chance to escape to New York City presents itself, she grabs hold with all her might!

In New York, Ada finally lands a dancing job. It's this job that catches the attention of Adelaide Herrmann, the only female illusionist in the magic business. Adelaide, it turns out, is in need of a dancer and wants Ada to join her crew. For the first time, Ada knows what it's like to be in the spotlight and it's everything she's ever dreamed and hoped for! 

But by the time she's taken the mantle of the Amazing Arden, everything has changed. Her signature piece has apparently ended in murder and Ada aka Arden is at the mercy of a small town police officer who hasn't yet decided whether to believe her plea of innocence or not. 

We begin our tale with the police officer in question, a man who has received dire news and has just been witness to Amazing Arden's act when he hears that she's being sought for questioning in a murder. But it's not his case or his jurisdiction and so he heads for home, stopping long enough for coffee midway. And it's here that he crosses paths with the suspected murderess.

Virgil, the cop, takes Ada/Arden into custody, cuffing her to a chair and ordering her to tell her tale. But he's in for way more than he expected. Ada begins with her childhood, taking him on a journey through the years, her life, and her career, promising that it's all necessary if she is to get to the question at hand: whether or not she killed her husband.

Of course Ada is an illusionist and the book is called The Magician's Lie, so the reader is definitely set up to expect some sort of manipulation or stretching of the truth. The lie itself didn't seem to live up to the expectation set by the title, but I was actually fine with that. Her "lie" isn't really the point and the question of whether or not she's a killer is there up until the very end. Ada/Arden's tale is instead one of hope and loss, magic and mystery, and yes, murder. It's a fun and easy read with an utterly charming setting - the magic and illusion were definitely a draw for me so I was pleased to find that the author handled it quite well. Overall the story is one that begs to be read in one sitting, which I almost managed!

Rating: 4/5

Because I like to share the love, I'm giving away one copy of The Magician's Lie! To enter, just fill out the Rafflecopter below before Monday, December 14. Open US only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


Literary Feline said...

I believe I have a copy of this one on my e-reader (the biggest downside to e-readers is not remembering what's on it because you can't see all the books in one place--I should make a list). It still sounds like something I will enjoy when I get to it. Illusionists/magicians have always fascinated me. And I do love a good mystery.

Carol M said...

I enjoy mysteries very much and this sounds like a good one! Thank you!

Shannon Jensen said...

This is a great giveaway. Greer came to speak at our public library on the release date of her book in paperback. She's a "local" girl, so I love supporting her any way possible.

traveler said...

Thanks for this captivating and treasure of a giveaway which I would enjoy and cherish. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

Hailsbells said...

Thanks for the chance!


Soft Fuzzy Sweater said...

I once tried to talk my way into the Magic Castle in Hollywood--no luck! Magician intrigue the sh!t out me. I want to read this book so please enter me and thank for the giveaway, annfesATyahooDOTcom

KAS said...

I am thrilled you are featuring this book -- and contest -- for the paperback release of this novel. I was super-psyched about it when it was initially released, but my focus was distracted by other new books. So I didn't follow up on getting and reading this goodie! Thanks very much for your selection, Becky. Cheers, Kara S