9/07/2009

The Art of Disappearing book review

I was given the opportunity to review the book The Art of Disappearing by Ivy Pochoda, her first novel. Here's what the publisher had to say about the book:

"Toby Warring seems too young and too attractive to be sending drinks to strange women in a small-town Nevada saloon, but that is exactly how he meets Mel Snow, a textile designer who is selling her wares throughout the country. In a brief but strangely familiar conversation, Toby shows Mel that he is a rare “real” magician – actually creating the wine he places in front of her – and explains that all he has ever wanted is to perform in Las Vegas. They marry the next day.

Soon they learn what – or rather, whom – they are each searching for in the desert. Years before, Toby performed the classic trick of making his lovely assistant disappear…except that this time, she didn’t come back. Racked with guilt, he wonders when and where she might turn up, if ever. Mel has been waiting for a miracle in the least likely of places. After the childhood loss of her brother, who was always more comfortable in water, Mel still expects him to appear somewhere in the dry Nevada land.

When Toby’s magic slips dangerously out of his control during his Las Vegas debut, he swears off magic and the pair flee the desert’s gaudy heat for the mysterious weather of Amsterdam. They meet an enclave of elderly magicians who, like Toby, could once manifest their illusions before their talents faded. But as they encourage Toby to return to his craft, Mel feels her marriage begin to unravel. The growing distance between the couple prompts her to ask, in such a malleable world, is love a constant, or is it susceptible to Toby’s magic?."


I can't really say much about this book without giving anything away! While it took me a bit to really get into it, as there was a lot of jumping around to the past (which was necessary), in the end it was a good book. The author had me guessing the outcome until the very end. I loved all the illusions that were actually part of reality and not really illusions after all. The author had such vivid descriptions, it was easy for me to picture all that was happening. She made you feel connected with the characters and helped you understand the lead character's emotions. This was definitely a magical love story and helps you appreciate the reality of love. For a first novel, I think Ivy did a fantastic job and really captured the mystery of magic and put it into her writing.

If you are interested in purchasing the book, it is available at Amazon and will be released September 15.

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