Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Illusionist's Apprentice” as Want to Read:
The Illusionist's Apprentice
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Illusionist's Apprentice

by
3.78  ·  Rating details ·  1,197 ratings  ·  379 reviews
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 upbr
...more
Paperback, 356 pages
Published March 2017 by HarperCollins Christian Publishing
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Illusionist's Apprentice, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Illusionist's Apprentice

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
3.78  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,197 ratings  ·  379 reviews


More filters
 | 
Sort order
Suzanne Leopold (Suzy Approved Book Reviews)
Following Houdini’s death in 1926, one of his contemporaries, Horace Stapleton, announces that he will bring a dead person back to life. Horace has been overshadowed by Houdini for his entire career and hopes his public showing on New Year's Eve will make him famous. The event becomes a tragedy when his “volunteer” dies at the performance. The FBI is called in to investigate the possibility of foul play. Houdini’s former apprentice, Wren Lockhart becomes involved when her name is found on the on ...more
Olivia
Second reading:
This book <3 It's going to stay with me for a very, very, very long time! So many wonderful emotions and glorious moments. And the writing inspires me so much!
***
First reading:
I need to take a deep breath. A really deep breath.

Okay, sorry for the drama. This book was astounding and when I say that I mean it. I think it will be on my list of most astonishing books I've read in a long time. Having grown to love this author's writing in the last few months, I was hoping this one
...more
Cindy Burnett
Feb 19, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: net-galley
Kristy Cambron has written an entertaining novel about an imagined apprentice of Harry Houdini, named Wren Lockhart. Houdini spent the later years of his life debunking mystics and others who alleged the ability to communicate with the dead. As the story opens, Houdini has died and one of the individuals defamed by Houdini, Horace Stapleton, is trying to jumpstart his career by appearing to bring a person back to life. Sadly, Horace’s attempt goes horribly awry causing the death of a man and res ...more
Deanne Patterson
Mar 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
This book was intense and I do mean intense! Full of rich historical detail , this Kristy Cambron novel had me on the edge of my seat in suspense, anticipating each new chapter. Her best work yet this is her most developed work to date and not to be missed!
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
Nov 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2017
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
...more
Hannah
I tried to start this a couple times a few months ago and never got past the first chapter or two. Thanks to a group read, I dove in and soon found myself entirely absorbed. Then I had the opposite problem of being unable to lay the book down at all!

The mystery of Peale and his double death soon morphs into a bigger mystery of who is calling the shots in a very literal sense. I enjoyed the atmosphere of the Prohibition years and the unique character Wren is. Add to that Elliot and his fascinati
...more
Dannii Elle
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to the author, Kristy Cambron, and the publisher, Thomas Nelson, for this opportunity.

Harry Houdini's apprentice, Wren Lockhart, has grown up and become an illusionist in her own right. Now, garbed in men's clothing and bearing a name as false as the tricks she practises, she is a rising star hoping to forget her illicit past. But when a dead man turns up in another's performance, Wren is unaccountably dragged into the en
...more
Karen Kay
I received this ARC from netgalley.com in exchange for a review.

Wren was Houdni's apprentice and is now working on her own and gaining enemies along the way. Agent Elliot Matthews is investigating a murder where Wren keeps popping up as a witness/accomplish or worse.

Although the book is set in Massachusetts 1900's, it could have been set in any time era. I just didn't connect with the characters and struggled to get to the end of the book.

2 ☆
Rachel
May 08, 2017 rated it did not like it
Just before reading this book, I determined to try to be more positive in my book reviews. It's not that I feel a desire to be less honest or that I worry about being offensive. It's more of a mental exercise for me--to see if I can write authentic yet constructive critiques.

With that goal in mind, I will not be detailing the multiplicity of flaws in this book. I will avoid dwelling on the fragmented sentences, the incongruities, the unlikable characters, the ridiculous number of plot twists in
...more
Lindsey (Books for Christian Girls)
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
...more
Tara Chevrestt
Feb 23, 2017 rated it it was ok
Things I am disliking about this novel:

Heroine thinks it's all about her. I don't see what any of it has to do with her.

She claims she wants to bury her former self, Jenny, forever. Then why are you still on the stage? And why are you still dressing like her?

The FBI agent is not a very good agent. Wren clearly states, "...there were whispers floating around about her. She was Amberley Green though, a chorus girl on the circuit long before she met and married Stanley Dover... They say she killed
...more
Rachael
Apr 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
I have enjoyed every read by this author. This book was no exception. I love a mystery, and this book has several mystery lines. I wasn't sure I would enjoy it as this isn't an era I find enjoyable in reading, but how the illusionists presented themselves and entertained was fascinating. The plot and story were well done. The one thing that kept it from five was that I didn't really connect with the characters. In truth, tho, I don't think that's the purpose though I love that about books. The m ...more
Andrea Cox
From the world of vaudeville comes a story of illusions...

Let's begin with the negatives, so we can get them out of the way. Hang on tight through this paragraph, because what comes after is beautiful. There were gobs of choppy sentence fragments that slowed down my reading pace as I went back to hunt down missing subjects or other portions of sentences. Several times, "I'd just assume" was used instead of the common (and intended) phrase of "I'd just as soon." The faith thread came on strong in
...more
Jennifer
3.5 stars

I received this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

At first, I had a very hard time getting into this book. I must have picked it up 2 or 3 times before it actually “stuck”, but I am glad it did because it turned out to be a really good historical fiction read. I think it took me some time to get used to authors style of writing, but eventually it all started to flow and I couldn’t stop reading it.

The story is really intriguing and not like anything I have read before.
...more
Jill
Mar 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorite-covers
I have enjoyed all of Kristy Cambron's previous books, but this one is by far my favorite. If you are a lover of historical fiction, I can't recommend this book highly enough. It was a great story with unforgettable characters. The chemistry between FBI agent Elliot and magician Wren was very well written. There was a slow build of romantic tension through out. I also enjoyed the back story featuring Harry Houdini and his quest to debunk the psychics of his time. I would recommend this book to f ...more
Lydia Howe
Mar 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Why I Choose this Book:

Well, it wasn't from the back cover blurb. ;) In fact, I just read it for the first time while copying and pasting it for this post. I chose the book solely because of the author - I've read her previous books; some of them have been amazing, others have left me scratching my head. I figured this book was worth a shot.

What I Thought about this Book:

It wasn't what I was expecting. But that's not necessarily a bad thing. I enjoyed the book, but there were some things I wasn
...more
Staci
Apr 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-2017
Well spun historical mystery.

Wren Lockhart is an illusionist that is very guarded about her personal life. FBI Agent Elliot Matthews seeks her help in trying to solve a crime.

This novel is both a love story and a mystery giving readers a peek into the life of an illusionist in 1920s Boston.

The mystery was well done and I didn't solve it on my own.

The Illusionist's Apprentice is evidence that Kristy Cambron has the skill to pen more than one type of history novel.

My gratitude to publisher Thomas
...more
Amanda Geaney
Jun 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Originally posted on https://christianshelfesteem.wordpres...

Kristy Cambron is a remarkable author with a unique voice. Ever since her debut novel The Butterfly and the Violin (2014), I've impatiently awaited each subsequent release. While I was initially intrigued by the synopsis of The Illusionist's Apprentice, I questioned how Harry Houdini and magic would play out in a Christian novel. With Cambron at the keys...the answer is impeccably well!

It's important to begin by stating the author draw
...more
Karen R
Nov 28, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Another fabulous read by Kristy Cambron! Set in the middle of the Jazz era, when vaudeville ruled the stage, giving a glimpse behind the backstage door where many well-guarded secrets were kept. The dark side of 1920's Boston, with prohibition, gangsters, and con men, creates a dramatic backdrop for the story, with a multi-layered mystery involving the fight for justice and truth.

"Truth is the illusion we all seek."
There's a real contrast set up between the light of truth, including faith in
...more
Beth Erin
Mar 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Full review on Faithfully Bookish http://wp.me/p7ngfE-D7

Take a peek behind the curtains at the enigmatic life of a vaudeville illusionist! The secrets of her trade are closely guarded but protecting the lessons she received from Harry Houdini could cost her everything.

Jenny Wren is a delightfully complex character with integrity, compassion, and a quiet faith. Elliot Matthews has been driven and devoted to his position as an FBI agent from the start but this case (and Wren Lockhart) is like no o
...more
Loraine
I have always been fascinated by illusionists and Cambron does an excellent job of bringing to life the world of illusion, the back halls of vaudeville, and the jazz era. The clever mysteries are easily woven throughout the plot without dominating it, and they are accompanied by gentle romance and a dual timeline. The dual timelines tell of the story of "Wren's" past and present and helped me understand why she had locked her heart and feelings away in the world of illusion such that she became ...more
Kate Breslin
Mar 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A DELIGHTFULLY INTRIGUING STORY
After reading this fascinating story about the enigmatic and eccentric illusionist, Wren Lockhart, I likened it to a rose blooming beneath the sun, unfolding one petal at a time to delight this reader with an unsolved mystery, a touch of romance, and a cache full of hidden truths I didn’t expect—and like the woman behind the illusion, those secrets kept tightly under lock and key. Once again author Kristy Cambron paints a captivating tale with her beautiful words a
...more
KC
Mar 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
1926 Boston, Wren Lockhart, the former apprentice of the recently deceased Harry Houdini, works as a vaudevillian and has a secret past. A puzzling death occurs around a performance by Horace Stapleton, a former debunked rival of Houdini's. When Wren becomes embroiled in the mystery, she finds herself in grave danger. The FBI soon become involved and try to solve the case along with the help of the illusionist. They must try and stop the criminal before time runs out. A fast paced historic myste ...more
Nicole
Mar 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The first few pages of this book have the reader walking into a mystery, and each paragraph after immerses you further into a world of illusion and intrigue. I felt so captivated from the start by the unique plot, setting, and the solid characters whose layers slowly peeled back throughout the story to reveal a depth "hidden in plain sight." Very very well done. The pieces of the puzzle came together at a brilliant pace - just enough at just the right moment, but nothing too soon. I also really ...more
Jenny Q
Jan 30, 2017 rated it liked it
Giveaway @ Let Them Read Books!

I have long been wanting to read one of Kristy Cambron's novels, and I even have The Butterfly and the Violin on my tablet, I just haven't had time to catch up on the thousands of ebooks I've acquired. (Maybe because I keep acquiring more? But that's a topic for another post!) So I jumped at the chance to review The Illusionist's Apprentice. And I have very mixed feelings about it. I'm going to skip the plot recap since this is a mystery and I don't want to risk gi
...more
Toni Shiloh
Mar 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Kristy Cambron is not an author you rush through. The way she creates a scene and draws you in, is nothing short of remarkable and worthy of lingering a spell. And that's exactly what I did while reading The Illusionist's Apprentice. I was completely transported to the 1920s and the world of vaudeville.

I loved the mystery aspect and Elliot is a fantastic hero! Truly, there wasn't much that I didn't like about Ms. Cambron's latest work. From the opening line (truly memorable) to the Epilogue, I w
...more
m a r y l i z
Jun 21, 2017 rated it really liked it
WOWZA. This book was good.

But the mystery?? I'M VERY CONFUSED.

Review to come. Perhaps my confuzzled brain will finally figure out what to think of the mystery by the time I review this...
Beth
I've enjoyed every book I've read by Kristy Cambron so far. The Illusionist's Apprentice takes on an intriguing time in history, as well as fascinating subject matter - vaudeville illusionists, both those that admitted their trick were illusion and those that attempted to fool the public into thinking that it was real. Wren Lockhart, despite her career as an illusionist, doesn't want to fool anyone. She is however, very protective secrets, including those of her time with the famous Houdini. FBI ...more
Dawn
This one was different than the others I've read by this author. It was more of a mystery. I was still captivated by it though! I love how rich in detail the book is. I love how Wren must decide what secrets she can share while at the same time trying to keep herself, and her identity, out of the spotlight.

I've not really thought about the way that magicians/illusionists work. This book was a fascinating glimpse into that world.

I received this book for free from the Booklook Blogger Program. My
...more
Melissa
Dec 25, 2016 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars, TOP PICK
https://www.rtbookreviews.com/book-re...
Cambron takes readers on an amazing journey into the world of vaudeville illusionists during the Roaring Twenties. This novel includes an intriguing mystery that adds adventure and suspense to the intricately detailed historical drama. The author obviously did a large amount of research into the subject. This shines through in the interplay of the characters and the plot, placing the reader into the story so much that the sights, sounds
...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Tide and Tempest (Edge of Freedom, #3)
  • A Respectable Actress
  • Lady of a Thousand Treasures (The Victorian Ladies, #1)
  • A Lady Unrivaled (Ladies of the Manor, #3)
  • Dark Justice
  • A Refuge Assured
  • As Love Blooms (The Gregory Sisters, #3)
  • The Promise of Breeze Hill (Natchez Trace, #1)
  • Shine Like the Dawn
  • Abandoned Memories (Escape to Paradise, #3)
  • The End of All Things (The Kinsman Chronicles, #1c)
  • The Road to Paradise (Vintage National Parks, #1)
  • Until the Dawn (Until the Dawn, #1)
  • The Constantine Codex (Jonathan Weber #3)
  • Kill Shot (White Knights #2)
  • When Tides Turn (Waves of Freedom, #3)
  • A Stranger at Fellsworth (Treasures of Surrey, #3)
  • Sincerely Yours
See similar books…
1,189 followers
KRISTY CAMBRON is a vintage-inspired storyteller, writing from the space where history, art, and faith intersect. She's an award-winning author of Bible studies and historical fiction—including her bestselling debut, The Butterfly and the Violin.

A self-proclaimed history nerd, she loves to chase all things research—going behind the scenes at a Ringling Bros. Sarasota mansion, touring a former TB s
...more
“Our mother used to say that a hero doesn't always have to slay a dragon to save the day." She swept a lock of hair behind her ear in an honest gesture, then pursed her lips and looked back at him, her gaze endearing. "Sometimes he just walks through the fire alongside you, and that's enough.” 8 likes
“If there was no darkness, there would be no opportunity for light to overcome it.” 3 likes
More quotes…