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The Amazing Harvey: A Mystery
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The Amazing Harvey: A Mystery

3.33  ·  Rating Details  ·  101 Ratings  ·  27 Reviews
Struggling magician Harvey Kendall is suspected of a murder he could not have committed, and he must now use his talents to pull off the greatest escape of his career, in a novel by Don Passman

On the brink of stardom, struggling magician Harvey Kendall is fingered in a vicious murder when his DNA is found on the victim, placing him at the scene of the crime. With one unexp
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published February 25th 2014 by Minotaur Books
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Dottie Gariti
Apr 13, 2014 Dottie Gariti rated it liked it
Enjoyed this book and I look forward to many more with this character. I like self-deprecating humor a lot, and this one is full with it. Harvey is a struggling magician and the author goes a little overboard describing some of the tricks, sometimes the book could almost be a magician's manual, but it adds to the story. The way the crime is solved is a little, or a lot, contrived but the basic premise has been in some other mysteries lately so it was not surprise. In fact if someone watches crim ...more
May 16, 2016 Cecilya rated it did not like it
i tried and tried to read this book. i only made it half way through within about half a month of reading. i read the little bit in the jacket "oh wow framed for murder - a magician - im so on board!" the murder really just feels like an after thought, and i wanted more of the focus to be there. Also, the main character, Harvey, is kind of a d-bag most of the time. THEN the discussion of the morality of abortion is brought up for a GOOD BIT of the book and yeah... i just couldn't do anymore. i w ...more
Kirk Hanley
Jul 21, 2014 Kirk Hanley rated it really liked it
The Amazing Harvey was a pleasant read, funny in a lot of places, with a mystery that really help together in the end. Harvey is a character I wouldn't mind spending time with again, and I hope this is the beginning of a series. That being said, I think the book could have used a bit of editing. It was a little repetitive in places and the pace was uneven. Some scenes breezed by and others were described in somewhat excruciating detail. But really, these are minor quibbles. If you want a light r ...more
Joe Slavinsky
Jan 16, 2016 Joe Slavinsky rated it really liked it
An very entertaining whodunit, with characters you really care about. The Amazing Harvey is a small-time professional magician, who supplements his income by substitute-teaching(in his magician's jacket with sequin lapels!). Harvey's everyday struggles become even more unpleasant, when his DNA is found in the body of a murder victim he has never met. This book is written with feeling, and a healthy dose of humor. I would recommend this book to anyone, not just mystery fans.
Pix Smith
Jun 20, 2014 Pix Smith rated it really liked it
Not a bad book. As a magician also, some of the stuff felt trite, and some felt a little precious, but all in all, the thinking of the main character is entirely believable. I thought the crime was an interesting one, the plot moved well, and very little of the story felt terribly contrived. I like it enough to want to see more of Harvey, so all in all, I call it a win.

Nothing heavy, some interesting thinking on the plot, and a set of folks that I'd definitely want to hang out with, and that mak
Aug 25, 2014 Steve rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery
I like a mystery story that trades on a unique characteristic of the protagonist, and this story delivered. The Amazing Harvey is accused of a crime and manages to use the skills he's learned as a magician to solve the case before he ends up in jail. I found the main character to be enjoyable. The characterizations were a little uneven - some characters seem nicely fleshed-out, while others felt a bit one-dimensional. But overall, this story was a solid beach read, without a doubt (even though m ...more
Apr 04, 2014 Julie rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014
A classic mystery where an innocent person is arrested for murder and sets out to prove they are innocent. The fact he is a magician and has to work a couple of shows adds a bit more fun. In the end, he gets off through a detail that is touched upon throughout the story. If I had been a doctor, I may have even figured some of it out earlier.
A light, fun read.
May 24, 2014 Kathy rated it liked it
Harvey is a magician, but even he can't figure out how his DNA got into a murder victim he had never met. Needless to say, the cops believe the DNA is proof that Harvey is the killer. Even if you've got mirrors and cards up your sleeve, you won't figure out how this one was done until Harvey does. I'm hoping for sequels.
Nov 16, 2014 Peter rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
Fun mystery that features a struggling magician who finds himself in a bit of trouble and has to use all the tricks he knows to get out of it. Here's my interview with the author:

Neil Szigethy
Jul 20, 2014 Neil Szigethy rated it it was ok
A very light summer read that was entertaining enough. Just a bit awkward in places and obviously not crafted by a master, it still held my interest and I have to admit the main characters were decently drawn. A good beach book, and maybe worth 2-1/2 stars.
Dec 28, 2015 Louis rated it really liked it
Harvey Kendall is a magician who is waiting for his big break. Unfortunately, this means he must work as a substitute teacher in Los Angeles, far from the greener pastures (for magicians anyway) of Las Vegas. He becomes the primary suspect in the murder of a woman he has never met. His DNA is found on the body. Armed with his magic skills (which make him a natural as a detective) Harvey now has to find the difference between illusion and reality. His life rides on it. This book works as a first ...more
Steve Gross
Jan 18, 2015 Steve Gross rated it it was ok
The writing is uneven - long parts that don't seem to mean anything. It would have been passable except for the huge amount of profanity, 99% of it unnecessary. Harvey is not a nice person.
Mar 24, 2014 John rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
Entertaining - interesting murder mystery based on DNA - insights into a magician's thought processes.
Joan Leicht
May 24, 2014 Joan Leicht rated it really liked it
Shelves: suspense
This is a new author for me. I enjoyed the main character plot was interesting and had a good twist.
Jeri Gabrielson
May 03, 2014 Jeri Gabrielson rated it really liked it
On the brink of stardom, struggling magician Harvey Kendall is accused of murder when his DNA is found on the victim--a woman he has never met.
Jun 23, 2015 Sharon rated it really liked it
great story about a desperate magician mistakenly charged with murder. twists and turns along the way make this book worth reading.
May 06, 2015 Jenine added it
Shelves: abandoned
I liked the premise but Harvey is too gauche for me.
Mar 27, 2015 Donna added it
nice character development and interesting plot twists

Heather Beecher
Jan 24, 2015 Heather Beecher rated it liked it
Fun read. Different angle than more typical mysteries.
Marisa Young
Jan 07, 2015 Marisa Young rated it liked it
Sorriest main character, but interesting story.
Mar 01, 2014 Pamela rated it really liked it
Quite entertaining.
May 08, 2014 Vince rated it liked it
Average mystery.
Feb 04, 2015 Harold rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
I adore Don Passman, who is my law partner, so this review is probably biased, but this is a fun light read. A mystery, solved by a magician who performs at the Magic Castle in Los Angeles, this is a breezy, cheeky, fun read. Don is a magician, both in prose and in life, and he knows tricks. If you live in LA the book is made even better by the familiarity of the landscape. All in all, a giggle.
Apr 19, 2016 Brittany rated it it was ok
This was an easy read but very dull, too many different plots and dynamics. If you like complex storylines this one will bore you but it was quirky and light so that made it easy to get through.
Sep 27, 2015 Lauren rated it really liked it
A nice, light mystery. I liked the sense of humor of the main character as well.
James Davis
Jun 08, 2014 James Davis rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
I enjoyed the book. Lots of fun combining murder, mystery and magic.
Apr 25, 2014 Carrie rated it liked it
Quite a cast of characters...good show...
Megan added it
Aug 11, 2016
P.K. marked it as to-read
Aug 09, 2016
Carrie added it
Jul 05, 2016
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