“Illusion” by Stephanie Elmas is available as a paperback and also eBook. Published by Endeavour Press.
Returning home from his travels with a stowaway named Kayan, Walter Balanchine is noted for the charms, potions and locket hanging from his neck.
Finding his friend Tom Winter’s mother unwell, he gives her a potion he learned to brew in the Far East. Lucid and free from pain, the old woman remembers something about Walter’s mother.
Walter is intrigued, for he has never known his family or even his own name – he christened himself upon leaving the workhouse.
Living in a cemetery with his pet panther Sinbad to keep the body snatchers away, word soon spreads of his healing and magical abilities and he becomes a sought after party performer.
During one of Walter’s parties, Tom is approached by Tamara Huntington, who reveals she is being forced to marry a man she does not love.
Will he and Walter come to her rescue?
Try as they might, sometimes all the best intentions in the world can’t put a stop to a bad thing, and she is soon married off to the cruel Cecil Hearst.
Drama and tragedy ensue, and Walter keeps his distance from Tamara.
That is until her stricken brother-in-law Daniel requires his magical healing, and he is forced back into her life.
With secrets beginning to emerge, Walter finds his mother may be a lot closer to home than he realised…
Filled with mystery, magic and larger than life characters, Illusion will keep you guessing until the very last page.
Set in London 1873 with Tom Winter as he catches up with old friend Walter Balanchine and his stowaway Kayan. Walter has been away travelling in The East learning healing and magic. Walter is asked to perform magic at a birthday party and that is where Tom first sets eyes on Tamara. She is there with her mother and a man presumed to be her father, but is actually Cecil Hearst, her soon to be husband. As the story progresses a picture is built up that delves into the lives and histories of the main cast of characters, a world of mystery, suspense and intrigue.
The characters of this story cover a good array of different traits, personalities and social backgrounds, rich, poor, feeble, heroic, manipulative and downright loathsome and evil. You will soon work out which character fits with which trait, who you will want to cheer on and who you will despise. Each has a very memorable personality making them easy to remember as the plot is explored. The plot itself is deeply twisted with an air of tension and suspense, taking the reader through many subplots. The story expresses the atmosphere of the era very well with some wonderful descriptions of the sights, sounds and smells.
I would recommend this book to readers of period fiction, mystery,that oozes atmosphere, suspense, mystery and intrigue.
About the Author:
Stephanie Elmas was born in Hong Kong to an English father and Czech mother but spent most of her childhood in Bristol, England UK. She studied English at university in London. She has worked as a head hunter, taught English in Japan and returned to university to complete a Masters in Victorian fiction. It was here that she developed her interest in the dark dangerous world of Victorian sensation writing. Stephanie now lives in a chaotic house in Surrey, England UK, with her husband and three highly energetic but wonderful children.
- Paperback: 283 pages
- Publisher: Independently published (2 Sept. 2017)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1549655175
- ISBN-13: 978-1549655173
- Amazon UK
Links for Endeavour
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