Katiebabs is a self-proclaimed present day bluestocking with her head always in a book. She runs her own book blog called Babbling about Books and More!
If you liked The Night Circus, with the feel of Downton Abbey, you'll enjoy The Magician's Lie. It has this near seductive narrative from the POV of Arden, the main protagonist as she tells her story to the detective that is holding her captive until she admits she killed her husband.
There are a great deal of flashbacks that really add to the flavor of the story and gives the reader great insight on who Arden is. She is illegitimate, and moves with her mother to her relatives' farm where she meets her cousin Ray, who she soon realizes isn't right in the head. Ray is a sociopath who enjoys hurting animals (and himself) with the purpose to see if he can heal them. He becomes obsessed with Arden and wants to break her so he can heal her, which he almost does. She runs away in fear for her life from Ray. She goes on an adventure and meets another man who makes her stronger, wiser and breaks her heart. Years later, Arden becomes a master illusionist, although the audience she astounds thinks of her as a magician. And then her entire world comes crashing down when Ray reenters her life and has figured out a way for her to do what he wants.
The Magician's Lie is well written and so very engaging. Arden's story grabs hold of you until the very end. There are many twists and turns regarding Arden and how she can be an incredible illusionist. This twist is revealed half way through and has a bit or irony behind it in regards to Ray and his goals. Ray is a real nasty number, and you shudder alongside Arden as he stalks Arden with malicious intent. I wish he was more well rounded because he comes across as a bit one-dimensional (reminds me of a mustache twirling villain), but his intent with Arden is chilling.
The dialogue and descriptions are rich and you end up cheering for Arden as she tries to escape a horrible psychopath, whose purpose is to destroy her for no real reason. The last 30 pages are so are fantastic and you will cheer for Arden as she ends up creating her best illusion or magic trick.