As a boy, Jake O’Sullivan witnessed a miraculous underwater escape by Harry Houdini. This childhood encounter escalates into a life-long obsession with the great escapologist. But Jake’s dreams of following in his hero’s footsteps are endangered when he becomes entangled in a criminal plot that threatens everything he has worked for. A mysterious woman called Lulu offers a way out, but she, too, is driven by deeper motives, and might ultimately prove to be the weight that pulls him under.
Houdini’s Shadow is a fast, compact, noir-ish novel that proves its own contention that 'There is always chance for redemption, an opportunity to push back shadow, but it becomes more difficult with . . . each chance you let slip through your fingers.' An old story—the only kind there is—told in a fresh way.
With deftly-drawn characters and a plot that appears and disappears intriguingly, Robillard has performed a masterful sleight of hand.
Robillard is a confident storyteller, with an eye for detail and a cinematic approach to scene-setting. The novel's portrayal of Montreal subculture is compelling and vivid, right down to the back alleys, seedy nightclubs and shady characters.
Winnipeg Free Press
Houdini's Shadow reads with real grace and power. Robillard, clearly a gifted storyteller, can at times make you wonder, with that old magician's dazzle, "Just how did he do that?
The Globe and Mail
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