I like Mondays. I also like magic. I figured I’d combine the two and make a Monday feature that is truly me: a little bit of magic and a look at the week ahead.
Tomorrow, I’ll post a review of The Nazi Seance, a biography of clairvoyant Erik Jan Hanussen. In the meantime, here’s a neat video on another famous fortune teller: the Magic 8 Ball.
It’s Monday, What Are You Reading?
Finished both The Nazi Seance and Frankenstein in the past week.
Next in the “queue” was my last library book, Magic Words by Gerald Kolpan. It’s a historical fiction novel involving Julius Meyer, an interpreter, and Alexander Herrmann, the magician, in the late 1800s. Within the first 20 pages, young Julius makes reference to sawing women into halves. This trick, though iconic now, wasn’t innovated or performed until the 1920s. And this is a huge pet peeve of mine. Ginormous. Yes, I know that I’m inconsistent in views. I watch Houdini and Doyle and it doesn’t bug me that Houdini is doing the water torture cell escape in 1901 (he didn’t do the trick until 1912). The closest I’ve come to explaining my inconsistency is that on Houdini and Doyle, it feels like they know what they’re getting wrong because they get other details right. When a character casually refers to a trick being common and iconic 50 years before it existed, I lose confidence in the author. So, right or wrong, I DNFed Magic Words…
…And moved on to The Last Policeman by Ben H. Winters, which I am enjoying quite a bit. As fast as I’m going through it, I doubt it will last the week. Next up, I should probably work on an ARC, probably the new translation of Yevgeny Onegin by Alexander Pushkin.
Shockingly, all these books are on my 15-ish Books of Summer list!