Death and the Conjuror

Mysterious: Penzler. Jul. 2022. 288p. ISBN 9781613163184. $25.95. M
DEBUT When Dr. Anselm Rees moved from Vienna to London, the semiretired psychiatrist took only three new clients. But, after a secretive visit from a guest one night in 1936, Rees’s housekeeper and one of those patients, an actress, opened his locked office and found his murdered body. Inspector George Flint is baffled by the locked-room puzzle, so he seeks help from Joseph Spector, a music hall magician. Spector, a student of deception and contemporary mysteries, points out there were three impossible crimes that week; Rees’s murder, the disappearance of a valuable painting, and a second death while the police were on the scene. As in any classic mystery, Spector calls together the suspects to reveal the killer.
VERDICT This debut, a tribute to John Dickson Carr and other Golden Age masters of the locked-room mystery, will appeal to nostalgia buffs and fans of the classics.
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