cover image Floating Illusions

Floating Illusions

Chelsea Quinn Yarbro. HarperCollins Publishers, $12.89 (215pp) ISBN 978-0-06-026643-1

This is a well-written, if predictable, mystery from the popular fantasy writer. At the turn of the century, Millicent, 14, is traveling on the Duchess of Malfi with her fussy maiden aunt, Mehitabel, to meet her mother in Europe. Highly intelligent, extremely sensible, Millicent fears her journey will be hampered by Aunt Mehitabel, until she discovers that the Incredible Anton, the famous illusionist, is also on board. Anton and Millicent become friends, but the friendshipand soon Anton's lifeis jeopardized by a series of violent and inexplicable deaths. All the evidence points to Anton as the mass killerwho else but a magician could pass through locked doors?but Millicent is sure Anton is innocent and sets out to find the real killer. Millicent is a likable character and there are some funny scenes involving Mehitabel and seances, but the solution to the mystery is a bit too easy. (12-up)