Review: Born of Illusion

Jun •  29 •  2014

I received this book for free from FTC: Exchange for honest opinion, Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: Born of IllusionBorn of Illusion by Teri Brown
Published by Balzer + Bray on July 2, 2014
Genres: Young Adult- Historical/Fantasy
Source: FTC: Exchange for honest opinion, Publisher
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Anna Van Housen has a secret.

A gifted illusionist, Anna assists her mother, the renowned medium Marguerite Van Housen, in her stage show and séances, easily navigating the underground world of magicians, mediums, and mentalists in 1920’s New York. As the illegitimate daughter of Harry Houdini—or so Marguerite claims—sleight of hand illusions have never been a challenge for Anna. The real trick is keeping her own gifts secret from her opportunistic mother. Because while Marguerite’s own powers may be a sham, Anna possesses a true ability to sense people’s feelings and foretell the future.

But as Anna’s powers intensify, she begins to experience frightening visions of her mother in peril, which leads her to explore the powers she’s tried so long to hide. And when a mysterious young man named Cole moves into the flat downstairs, introducing Anna to a secret society that studies people with gifts like hers, she is forced to confront her past and rethink everything she’s ever known. Is her mother truly in danger, or are Anna’s visions merely illusion? And could the great Houdini really be her father, or is it just another of Marguerite’s tricks?

A historical fantasy proves to always be interesting. I think what captures my attention the most is the idea that when reading this book, the reader always seems to get some sort of history lesson out of it, hence it being historical. What amazes me is that when I am in class, I tend to find history not as interesting as I do when picking up a book and I feel that goes to it being mixed with the fiction world that I seem to fall in love with

This story follows the life of Anna Van Housen as she embarks from being a stage assistant with some magical abilities to a girl that will capture the attention of many. Anna throughout this novel is being held back by her mother and through the story when Anna steps up, tension grows between the two. However, tension must be put to the side because danger is lurking close behind and this could mean the death of someone.

I found Anna to be very interesting. I felt that at times she was naïve but that came with her wanting to do things but being held back. As the story develops she becomes more mature and daring especially when the times get rough. I felt she grew perfectly in the novel and she will be a character that people will come to love. I loved Cole most of the times. I have to admit that there were times he did upset me but this made him come off dark and mysterious which I tend to lean towards more in male characters. The connection between Anna and Cole is cute.  I love when they are together. I am curious to see where this relationship goes and how it builds.

I saw the twist coming but I was still excited. The twist brought something a little different and I was happy that this proved too exciting as I hoped it would be. I cannot say too much on this topic because I don’t want to give it away.

Overall Born of Illusion is an exciting read that lovers of historical fantasy will love. Teri Brown creates a spell-binding world that will trap you in its own illusion and have you hold on to the very end.

I give this book 4 bites!