cover image Escaping from Houdini

Escaping from Houdini

Kerri Maniscalco. Little, Brown/Patterson, $18.99 (448p) ISBN 978-0-316-55170-0

The third book in Maniscalco’s Stalking Jack the Ripper series is a Gothic-inspired mystery set against the glamorous backdrop of trans-Atlantic sea travel. Seventeen-year-old forensic student Audrey Rose travels to New York from Liverpool with her fellow apprentice (and secret fiancé) Thomas and her Uncle Jonathan, a physician under whom both study. Just as the cruise gets underway, privileged young woman passengers begin dying—and the deaths seem connected to the chilling, tarot card–based Moonlight Carnival entertaining guests on the cruise. As her cohort autopsies the women, and Audrey Rose investigates, she’s pulled into the world of the mysterious masked carnival ringmaster Mephistopheles and a performed sleight of hand that defies scientific explanation. With only days at sea, she must quickly discover the women’s causes of death—and whodunit—before she becomes the next victim. Blending old-fashioned sensibilities with a classic mystery, Maniscalco skillfully delivers social commentary to top off a gripping, detailed suspense story. Ages 15–up. [em]Agent: Barbara Poelle, Irene Goodman Literary. (Sept.) [/em]