The Confabulist is an intriguing story that combines the lives of Harry Houdini and Martin Strauss, a man who believes that he has killed Houdini-twice. The timeline skips between Martin in the present, where we learn that he has just been diagnosed with a disease of the memory, and the late 1890's through 1920's with both Martin's and Houdini's perspectives throughout the building and height of Houdini's career.
With a plot thick in illusion and suspense, I found this to be a compelling and quick read. Though we have somewhat of an unreliable narrator, I was still swept away in the culture of the magical acts in the 1920's, which was richly described. Learning how some of the illusions were performed was also a bonus for me. Also, seeing well known historical figures such as Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and the Romanov's involvement with Spiritualism added another layer of mystery to the many that are present within this novel.
" Substance and illusion. Knowing which is which is difficult, maybe impossible."
This Advanced Reading Copy was received for free in return for an honest review