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Masters of Illusions: A Novel of the Connecticut Circus Fire
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Masters of Illusions: A Novel of the Connecticut Circus Fire

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3.58  ·  Rating details ·  48 Ratings  ·  9 Reviews
In an historical novel based on the 1944 Barnum & Bailey's circus tent fire that killed hundreds, two survivors reexamine their lives and marriage while seeking the fire's true cause. By the author of The Port of Missing Men.
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published June 13th 1994 by Grand Central Publishing (first published 1994)
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Amy
Feb 25, 2007 added it
Okay, I just finished this book and it pains me to admit that I really didn't like it. I enjoyed reading about places that I knew-but I thought it was fairly juvenile. Not sure if I would recommend this to anyone. Sorry Mary-Ann.
Kristi Schoonover
Oct 17, 2012 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Joanne
Jan 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
Based on the 1944 circus fire in Hartford, CT. This is the story of Charlie (a firefighter who is obsessed with the fire) and Margie who was just an infant when she went to the fire with her mother (who did not survive). Throughout Margie & Charlie's marriage, he is looking for who set the fire that fated July day. At first Margie is supportive of his quest, but after many years she is tired of his obsessive hobby and wants more from their life than the books she gets lost in and her daughte ...more
Dolores
Dec 31, 2014 rated it liked it
Margie Potter was the youngest child to survive the tragic Hartford circus fire of 1944, which left her motherless and scarred; eighteen years later she met and married Charlie O'Neill, a Hartford fireman who seems obsessed with the disaster. I remember being horrified by the fire when I was a child, so I was eager to read this book. It was well worth reading, but for me it seemed to lose momentum towards the end.
Sandy
Aug 26, 2011 rated it really liked it
The story is based on a true historical circus fire and the mysteries of who or what started it and the unidentified dead. Really liked it. I picked up subtle sarcasm in her writing style ( and I always enjoy that). And of course, I enjoy anything related to carnivals. Stayed up till midnight to finish it. That's saying something from this old gal.
Ann Moriarty
I went to the circus in Waterbury, CT two days before the Hartford fire and have always wanted to read everything I could about it. I could not put this book down.
Lynda Rodriguez
Aug 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
I really liked it, interesting twist at the end
Stacey
Jul 06, 2014 rated it it was ok
See Kristi's review--that says it all.
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I was born and raised in Hartford, Connecticut and have lived in Connecticut all my life except for the two years I served as a Peace Corps volunteer on Mt. Cameroon, an active volcano rising nearly 14,000 feet above the equatorial sea. I have a fun family and a labradoodle named Saltalamacchia, also fun. "Salty," my first dog.

My grandparents on my father's side immigrated from the north of Italy,
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