Monday, April 17, 2017

"The Illusionist's Apprentice" by Kristy Cambron

About this book:

  “Not all illusions happen on the stage.
  Wren Lockhart, apprentice to master illusionist Harry Houdini, uses life on a vaudeville stage to escape the pain of her past. She continues her career of illusion after her mentor’s death, intent on burying her true identity.
  But when a rival performer’s act goes tragically wrong, the newly formed FBI calls on Wren to speak the truth—and reveal her real name to the world. She transfers her skills for misdirection from the stage to the back halls of vaudeville, as she finds herself the unlikely partner in the FBI’s investigation. All the while Houdini’s words echo in her mind: Whatever occurs, the crowd must believe it’s what you meant to happen. She knows that if anyone digs too deep, secrets long kept hidden may find their way to the surface—and shatter her carefully controlled world.
  Set during one of the richest, most vibrant eras in American history, this Jazz Age novel of illusion, suspense, and forgotten pasts is perfect for fans of The Magician’s Lie, challenging all to find the underpinnings of faith on their own life’s stage.”

Series: As of now, no.   

Spiritual Content- 1 Corinthians 15:55 at the beginning; Prayers; A mini-talk about a gift Wren has received (salvation); A couple ‘H’s are capital when referring to God; Mentions of God & His light; Mentions of prayers & praying; Mentions of faiths & religion; A few mentions of thanking God, the Almighty & Providence; A few mentions of miracles;
*Note: Nearly all about mentions of mediums, séances, spells, talking to/summing spirits, & bringing a dead person back to life; Many mentions of spiritualists, spiritualism & defrauding them; Mentions of magic & mysticism; A mention of bad press being damning.

Negative Content- Minor cussing including: two ‘blasted’s, two ‘darn’s, and two ‘stupid’s; A bit of eye rolling; A couple mentions of curses (said, not written); Pain, blood, passing out, being shot at, injuries, guns aimed, gunfire, almost drowning & kidnappings (up to semi-detailed); An explosion & smoke (semi-detailed); Punching someone (up to semi-detailed); *Spoiler* Wren’s mother died protecting Wren & her sister (she was pushed down the stairs by her abusive husband indirectly, both girls saw it and we see flashbacks of that day, up to semi-detailed) *End of Spoiler*; Many mentions of wars, deaths, graves, bodies/corpses, killing, murders & bringing a dead person to life again; Mentions of hit men, gunfire, being shot, blood & injuries (up to semi-detailed); Mentions of hangings; Mentions of physical abuse & injuries (up to semi-detailed); Mentions of a drug & someone poisoned; Mentions of threats; Mentions of hatred; Mentions of gamblers, debts, loan sharks & cons; Mentions of alcohol, drinking, bootleggers, spiked drinks, the Prohibition & a mean drunk; Mentions of pubs, pints & drunks; Mentions of cigarettes & smoking; Mentions of lies, liars & lying; Mentions of gossip & rumors; A few mentions of thieves; A few mentions of jail & prison; A few mentions of blackmail; A few mentions of punching someone; A few mentions of a stuffed big-game cat (up to semi-detailed); A couple mentions of a hostage situation & murder; A couple mentions of crime scenes; A couple mentions of knifes; A couple mentions of a hangover.

Sexual Content- a cheek kiss, two barely-above-not-detailed kisses, and two semi-detailed kisses; Touches, Nearness & Embraces (up to semi-detailed); Noticing; *Spoiler* Wren was conceived out of wedlock *End of Spoiler*; Mentions of flirts & flirting; Mentions of slang for different women & their occupations; A few mentions of kisses & touches; A few mentions of blushes; A couple mentions of men’s appreciating women’s looks; Love, falling in love & the emotions;
             *Note: A couple mentions of a woman’s only talent being to shimmy around on a stage.

-Wren Lockhart, age 26
-Elliot Matthews
                                P.O.V. switches between them & her mother (twice)
                                              Set in 1926-1927 {Flashbacks to 1907, 1910, 1916 & 1924}
                                                        351 pages

Pre Teens-
New Teens-
Early High School Teens-
Older High School Teens-
My personal Rating-
What an interesting book. This was my first book by this author and it had an almost a poetic style of writing. I'm not quite sure where to start on these final thoughts, so let's just jump in.
Wren. At first, I was thinking she might be a little over-the-top or very much like a suffrage woman of that time period, but she was very different. And I liked that about her. She didn't wear a men's suits to shock people, she did it to keep up her act. She was dedicated to what she was doing. She had that mysterious, independent, intriguing vibe about her. She has to be one of the more unique heroines I've read about in Christian fiction—especially as one that wasn’t set one way or another on the suffrage movement. Her personal story was quite sad though. (And mentions of the abuse brought down the ratings.) She kept her wit about her though and it was quite entertaining. I actually wasn't aware this would be a romance story, so Elliot came out of left field for me. He was interesting as well, but I would have liked to learn a bit more about him.
There wasn't an over whelming amount of faith content in this novel, but what was there came more towards the end and it was nicely done. :)
Some might take sensitivity towards all the mentions of magic, mediums, and bringing someone back to life from the dead—as those were all topics talked about and mentioned often.
Overall, in my opinion, it was a very intriguing and interesting plot. I'm curious to read some of the author's other books.

See y’all on Wednesday with a new review!

*BFCG may (Read the review to see) recommend this book by this author. It does not mean I recommend all the books by this author.
*I received this book for free from the Publisher (Thomas Nelson) for this honest review.

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