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I live in Bedford, England. Having retired from teaching; I am now a research student at the University of Bedfordshire researching into Threshold Concepts in the context of A-level Physics. I love reading! I enjoy in particular fiction (mostly great and classic fiction although I also enjoy whodunnits), biography, history and smart thinking. I have also recently become a keen playgoer to London Fringe Theatre. I enjoy mostly classics and I read the playscripts and add those to the blog. I am a member of Bedford Writers' Circle. See their website here: http://bedford-writers.co.uk/ Follow me on twitter: @daja57

Saturday, 5 December 2015

"The Prestige" by Christopher Priest

A young journalist, born in the late 1960s and haunted by an identical twin who has no birth certificate, investigates a mysterious case of bilocation at a mysterious estate in Derbyshire. There he learns about his great-grandfather, a magician whose signature trick was to disappear from one cabinet and immediately reappear in another. He also hears about his great-grandfather's greatest rival, another magician whose family now live in the estate. This second magician also invented a bilocation trick but he was able to manifest the reappearance at a much greater distance, and also as quickly. How are these tricks done: using doubles, identical twins or the new powers of electricity as developed by inventor Nikolas Tesla? And what is the dark secret that led to the killing of a little boy?

The world of Victorian magic, spiritism and sordid secrets is recreated in eerie detail. And through it all, the reader is asking himself how his attention is being manipulated so that he can be deceived.

"An illusion has three stages."

  • Set up (my hands are empty, my sleeves are too, the cup is solid ...)
  • Performance (the prestidigitation)
  • Prestige (the product of the magic, the rabbit)
Spooky.

December 2015; 360 pages

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