Guys, I am so pleased to be included on the Born of Illusion Blog Tour. That gorgeous cover initially drew me, but the story and concept are equally good! The awesome ladies at Rockstar Book Tours have put together another great tour, complete with some lovely giveaway prizes. So check out my review of Born of Illusion and then enter to win a vintage spoon bracelet and an eyeshadow trio inspired by the book.
Author: Teri Brown
Series: Born of Illusion, book #1
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: June 11, 2013
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble
"I recognize in Dr. Finneas Bennett a snake-oil salesman of the highest caliber. Of course, it takes one to know one."
I love a good historical fiction, especially one set in the Roaring Twenties. I still maintain that I was a flapper in a previous life. =) This particular time period was so rife with change, so imbued with culture, and it makes for some of the more intriguing historical fiction I've had the pleasure of reading.
Inevitably, I couldn't help but compare this novel to Libba Bray's The Diviners. Both books are set in New York during the 1920s and both involve séances, spirits, and the like. But I can honestly say that Born of Illusion holds its own against the work of one of my favorite authors, and it does so in measurably fewer pages. I'm in no way complaining about the length of The Diviners; I just know that some readers found the sheer number of pages in that book rather daunting. But that book had so much ground to cover and so many characters on which to focus, that its length was necessary to build the complete picture. Not so with Born of Illusion.
Anna's story is magical, literally and figuratively speaking. She might be the illegitimate daughter of Houdini, but she's also a magician in her own right, and a damn fine one at that. Yet, her mother refuses to share the spotlight with her. Their rocky relationship made it hard to like Marguerite, especially when she was forcing her daughter to take advantage of innocent people, but I eventually came to understand their dynamic and even understood Marguerite's position on a lot of decisions.
"She's a terrible snob for someone who swindles people out of money for a living."That includes Anna's love life. I'd be remiss if I didn't point out that the romance in this book takes on a bit of a triangular edge, but the way it was presented made it essential to the story line. It wasn't simply a ploy used by the author to create unnecessary drama; the love triangle actually serves a purpose in this novel. And it's resolved by the end of the book...no waiting until the next installment to see who Anna chooses, though for me, I don't think there was ever any question.
"And Cole is the only one who can teach me. Cole, who vacillates between aloof and caring faster than a magician can say, 'Abracadabra.'"
"Owen sighs, his eyes remorseful. "I'm sorry, I'm just so jealous I can't see straight. I've been trying to let you know how I feel about you, but I'm such a klutz it never comes out right."The book is a tad predictable, obviously, if I was able to figure out who Anna would end up with from the get-go. I also determined the identity of the villain pretty early on, but neither of these facts detracted from my enjoyment of the novel. In fact, knowing these things actually made it easier to appreciate the rest of the novel and focus on other aspects I might have paid less attention to, including that Houdini fellow. ;0)
All in all, I consider Born of Illusion to be a commendable entry in the YA historical fiction genre. The author captured the essence of the 20s beautifully, and made the allure of magic and illusion even more so before setting the stage for an engaging sequel. And this time, the story will focus on Rasputin. Color me intrigued...
To celebrate the launch of BORN OF ILLUSION, Teri is giving away 10 sets of BORN OF ILLUSION earth mineral eye shadow available for a limited time only from Glamour Doll Eyes. You, too, can get the glam look of the twenties!
Teri will also be giving away not, one but THREE grand prizes that Cari Cucksey, (of HGTV’s Cash and Cari), picked out from her RePurpose shop especially for the BORN OF ILLUSION launch!
Giveaway is US/Canada.
Follow the rest of the Born of Illusion Blog Tour:
June 3rd - Tales of the Ravenous Reader - Guest Post
June 4th - Mostly YA Books Obsessed - Review
June 5th - Hobbitsies - Interview
June 6th - YA Bibliophile - Guest Post
June 7th - The Starry-Eyed Revue - Review
June 10th - Supernatural Snark - Interview
June 11th - Between the Pages - Review
June 12th - Icey Books - Guest Post
June 13th - Larissa & Friends' Bookish Life - Guest Post
June 14th - The Irish Banana - Review
Thanks for stopping by & happy reading!