Smoke and Mirrors

Smoke and Mirrors

Elly Griffiths / Apr 21, 2021

Smoke and Mirrors Chilling murder in the world of s theatre another case for DI Stephens and Max Mephisto Brighton winter Pantomime season is in full swing on the pier with Max Mephisto starring in Aladdin b

  • Title: Smoke and Mirrors
  • Author: Elly Griffiths
  • ISBN: 9781784290269
  • Page: 470
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Chilling murder in the world of 1950s theatre another case for DI Stephens and Max Mephisto.Brighton, winter 1951.Pantomime season is in full swing on the pier with Max Mephisto starring in Aladdin, but Max s headlines have been stolen by the disappearance of two local children When they are found dead in the snow, surrounded by sweets, it s not long before the press nChilling murder in the world of 1950s theatre another case for DI Stephens and Max Mephisto.Brighton, winter 1951.Pantomime season is in full swing on the pier with Max Mephisto starring in Aladdin, but Max s headlines have been stolen by the disappearance of two local children When they are found dead in the snow, surrounded by sweets, it s not long before the press nickname them Hansel and Gretel.DI Edgar Stephens has plenty of leads to investigate The girl, Annie, used to write gruesome plays based on the Grimms fairy tales Does the clue lie in Annie s unfinished and rather disturbing last script Or might it lie with the eccentric theatricals who have assembled for the pantomime For Stan aka the Great Diablo , who s also appearing in Aladdin, the case raises personal memories Back before the Great War, he witnessed the murder of a young girl while he was starring in another show, an event which has eerie parallels to the current case.Once again Edgar enlists Max s help in penetrating the shadowy theatrical world that seems to hold the key But with both distracted by their own personal problems, neither can afford to miss a trick For Annie and her friend, time is running out

    • × Smoke and Mirrors || ✓ PDF Read by ☆ Elly Griffiths
      470 Elly Griffiths
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      Posted by:Elly Griffiths
      Published :2020-09-13T00:52:49+00:00

    About "Elly Griffiths"

      • Elly Griffiths

        Elly Griffiths Ruth Galloway novels take for their inspiration Elly s husband, who gave up a city job to train as an archaeologist, and her aunt who lives on the Norfolk coast and who filled her niece s head with the myths and legends of that area Elly has two children and lives near Brighton Though not her first novel, The Crossing Places is her first crime novel.


    1. 3.5 I am always a little hesitant to read a new series by an author who already writes a series I absolutely love. Ellyn Griffiths though, comes up, with the most marvelous characters, she does it in her Ruth Galloway series, and I feel she does it in this new series as well. Two young children have gone missing, thirteen year old Annie and her friend Mark. Annie clearly the leader, loves to write and put on plays, strange twists on old fables. DI Edgar Stephens is given the case.Love the feelin [...]

    2. DI Edgar Stephens and Max Mephisto are back in Smoke and Mirrors, book two in the Edgar Stephens and Max Mephisto series!This time, two children disappear and are later found dead. Has the murder of children something to do with the fact that the girl Annie used to write gruesome plays? Is there something in the last script that got the two children killed or has it something to do with a killing that took place around 30 years before. The first book in this series introduced us to DI Edgar Step [...]

    3. A snowy 1950's Brighton sets the scene for Smoke and Mirrors. DI Edgar Stephens is tasked with finding two missing children. His friend Max Mephisto is headlining in the local panto Aladdin, but the real headlines are all about the children, in what becomes known as the Hansel and Gretel case. DI Stephens has plenty of leads and suspects to follow, but parallels are being drawn with a similar case in 1912, where some of those people present at that time are also in evidence here in Brighton. Coi [...]

    4. This is the second in the author's Stephens & Max Mephisto mystery series. The hand-wringing style, slow pacing, and lack of tension of the first book, The Zig Zag Girl, continues in this book. Set in Brighton just before Christmas 1951, two children are missing and then a third is abducted. DI Edgar Stephens and his sargeants, Emma and Bob, are completely stymied. Max, Edgar's best friend who he met during the war, is an actor in a pantomime appearing at the end of a pier, but doesn't reall [...]

    5. Famed magician Max Mephisto returns to Brighton to star in a local production of "Aladdin" at Christmastime 1951. His former service friend, Detective Edgar Stephens, is investigating the disappearance of two children. The two children, 12 and 13, write, star and produce plays for an even younger acting troupe and are very bright and clever. The children are currently producing a play based on "Hansel and Gretel" with quite a twist. There is no good news on the search though and the children are [...]

    6. This is the 3rd book I have read by Elly Griffiths and I found this one to be the best yet.The other 2 books I read 'The Zig Zag Girl' and 'The Ghost Fields' had lots of promise and both started excellently but just failed in my opinion to sustain the thrill and excitement they initially promised. This book however not only started well but kept me on the edge of my seat to the very end.This is the 2nd book in the DI Stephens & Max Mephisto series, following 'The Zig Zag Girl', but would equ [...]

    7. What a real pleasure to get an advanced copy of Smoke and Mirrors through Net Galley and only have to give an honest review in return.As a fan of Elly Griffiths you may sense an impartial review coming however it isn’t a given since this is the second novel in her magic men series and her justified reputation is based on her Ruth Galloway series. Therefore, buyer beware, this is Elly’s follow-up to The Zig Zag Girl and is again set in Brighton in the UK during the 50’s.That many of her cas [...]

    8. Smoke and Mirrors is the second book in the Stephens and Mephisto Mystery series by British author, Elly Griffiths. Brighton, late November, 1951, and it’s snowing. On the West Pier, the pantomime, Aladdin is in rehearsal, with Max Mephisto starring. But his army friend, DI Edgar Stephens hasn’t time to see the show, or even to socialise: a girl and boy are missing, and the families are understandably frantic. Worst fears are realised when their bodies are discovered in the snow, surrounded, [...]

    9. Excellent!My View:I am so loving this series. Great characters that you want to learn more about and empathise with. The characters are so visual, so real, I have pictures of them in my head. The narrative is page turning and so very sad but not morose. Human nature is explored, lies revealed. A great read. I can wait for the next in this series.

    10. brighton in the winter of 1951 and 2 missing children r found dead in the snow - strangled and with the scene resembling a fairy tale edgar stephens is leading the investigation and it appears that the girl is addicted to the theatre and writing stories - but these fairy tales do not have a happy ending he is joined by his friend max who is playing in the local panto and it soon appears clear that the people within the company could either be linked, have dubious stories ro secrets to hide. plus [...]

    11. Having absolutely adored “The Zig Zag Girl” I was really pleased when another adventure for Max and Edgar dropped through my door – and I was not disappointed. Once again the mixture of magic and murder makes for an addictive and fun read despite the dark undertone to this particular tale dealing as it does with missing children.Brighton 1951 and Max is doing Panto….Edgar meanwhile is desperately trying to track down two missing children who seem to have vanished into thin air. Sadly the [...]

    12. Smoke and Mirrors was a very entertaining read. I am a huge fan of Elly Griffiths other series, the Ruth Galloway mysteries, and was really excited to read this one. I did not read the first in the series yet though I have it on my bookshelf. I had no trouble picking up the story with Smoke and Mirrors and didn’t feel like anything was confusing because I had not read the first one in the series.The main story takes place in Brighton, England in 1951. Two children disappear and are subsequentl [...]

    13. A highly readable atmospheric crime thriller, with a great sense of time and place.A double murder is committed as pantomime season is in full swing in Brighton in the 1950s.Somehow the two are connected and DI Edgar Stephens has plenty of leads to investigate. Assisting Stephens is Max, one of the pantomime’s stars who served with Stephens in a shadowy, secret unit called the Magic Men, formed to use stage trickery to confuse the enemy.This is the second book by Elly Griffiths to feature the [...]

    14. I've loved Griffiths' Ruth Galloway mysteries, but this was my first of her Brighton-set series. (I've now reserve the first title). Set in 1951 with a real feel for time and place (rationing of food and fuel, no telephones in all the houses, etc.), the theatre setting (Max Mephisto, a magician, helps DCI Edgar Stephens solve cases) and the fairy tale theme (the murdered teen wrote plays with fairy tale themes, dark and gritty) were all draws for me. Two children, 12 and 13, are found murdered i [...]

    15. Magician Max Mephisto is performing in a Christmas pantomime, and his unlikely friend, Detective Inspector Edgar Stephens, is searching for two lost children, although Stephens believes in his heart that they are dead. Max finds connections between the cast of the pantomime and a murder that took place in 1912 (the book is set in 1951), and Stephens and his team are willing to look for any clue to a mysterious and sinister puzzle. This did not have the mind-boggling suspense of the first in the [...]

    16. Smoke and Mirrors is the second book in the Magic Men Mysteries, following the successful The Zig Zag Girl. This second entry seals the deal for me that Elly’s new series is another favorite. As an ardent fan of the Ruth Galloway series, I started this new series with a bit of trepidation. Could I really love another series by this favorite author as much as the first? Well, apparently, the answer is an unqualified yes. The smooth writing, the great plotting, and the fascinating characters who [...]

    17. He's behind you!!In the midst of heavy snowfall in the winter of 1951 in Brighton, two young children are missing. Detective Inspector Edgar Stephens and his team are desperately searching but as time passes and temperatures plummet below zero, hope is beginning to fade. And Edgar's worst fears are realised when the children are found dead on Devil's Dyke, with sweets strewn in the snow around them. Annie and Mark had been best friends for years, with Annie as the leader and Mark a willing follo [...]

    18. November 1951 and DI Edgar Stephens Sergeant Bob Willis and Sergeant Emma Holmes are carrying out an investigation into two children have gone missing, one minute they were going to buy sweets, the next they’d disappeared into thin air. With snow falling the police have a huge task ahead of them while the local community do their best to assist in the search.Meanwhile with pantomime season approaching, Max Mephisto is busy rehearsing for Aladdin. Playing the part of Abanazar which allows him t [...]

    19. 3 1/2 stars. Better than The Zig Zag Girl but I really love the Ruth Galloway series. I hate saying it because Ms. Griffiths is almost being penalized because the other series is so damn good. Conan Doyle would probably sympathize. I will keep reading both series though because I am a fan of her writing.

    20. Better than book one, but I'm still waiting for Max and Edgar to get togetherEdgar has the worst taste in women.

    21. First of all many thanks to Netgalley and Quercus for providing me with an advance copy of Smoke And Mirrors which is the second in Ms Griffiths' historical Stephens and Mephisto series. Two young teenagers, Annie Francis and Mark Webster, go missing in Brighton and Detective Inspector Edgar Stephens is put in charge of finding them. Unfortunately they are found dead a few days later so the disappearance turns into a murder investigation. Coincidentally Ed's friend from his army days, the stage [...]

    22. Just two books into this series and I'm already beginning to enjoy Edgar and Max's adventures almost as much as those of Ruth Galloway and her chums. This one takes place just over a year after Zig Zag Girl during a particularly severe winter in December 1951. It's pantomime season and Max is starring in "Aladdin" whilst Edgar has the daunting task of finding the murderer of two young children.I loved the way the novel delved into the dark Gothic fairytales that pantomimes are based on and how t [...]

    23. This was a really good read. The setting, Brighton in the early 1950's . No mobiles, internet or social media. This is what made it so refreshing. It took you back to a time when life was much simpler and pantomime was such a big thing in people lives during the festive season. Live theatre and the smell of greasepaint,plus the fascination of the audience was conveyed admirably by the superb writing of this author. Of course the investigation of the crimes would be entirely different in the pres [...]

    24. One of the many pleasures of reading the Stephens & Mephisto series is the friendship between the two men. In most other mysteries with two main characters, both characters are involved in detection of the crime. Here, Max serves more often than not adds colour to the story and provides Edgar with, usually, a much needed pause from the tensions of the chase. Smoke is well plotted and very well told.

    25. Quite a good second in series entry, featuring DI Edgar Stephens and magician Max Mephisto, set in post-war Brighton, UK (1951). Two 13-year-old children go missing on a cold November evening, and DI Stephens and his team pull out all the stops trying to find Mark Webster and Annie Francis. Alas, their searches turn up the two dead children, posed in a shallow ditch on the edge of town 3 days later, and Ed is certain that he's never seen anything so horrible, even during his years in the war.Max [...]

    26. #2 in the Magic Men Mystery series. The Magic Men, DI Edgar Stephens, magician Max Mephisto and veteran actor The Great Diablo, return from The Zig Zag Girl (2014) return for this mystery set in Brighton, England in the winter of 1951. It is almost contemporary but is set far enough in the past to be a period piece. Post WWII rationing, returning veterans and the British vocabulary of the time as well as the jargon of the pantomime theatre, add to the atmosphere of this mystery but also add to t [...]

    27. A first meeting with Elly Griffiths and it was a delight. A present from my best friend, and I was somewhat reluctant to get into it because of being put off by a 'subtitle:' "A Magic Man Mystery." I was being foolish.This is well-plotted and smoothly written. With a major character with a name like Max Mephisto, I had my doubts, but it is a stage name and the man is an actor and a magician. He is also a charmer and yet a down-to-earth man in the real.The stage is always subtext, but it glues th [...]

    28. A solid period piece even if the solution to the mystery was signaled with neon lights over the marquee. A melding of police procedural and cozy mystery that unfolds against the backdrop of post-war Brighton England during the Christmas season. It's an era when that most English of performance traditions -- the Christmas Panto -- a combination of Vaudevillian farce and revisionist fairy tales took center stage ensuring continued employment for actors of all sorts. Max Mephisto, a star magician i [...]

    29. I didn't get on as well with Smoke And Mirrors as most other people seem to have done. The story is set in Brighton in 1951 where Detective Inspector Edgar Stephens and his two sergeants are investigating the disappearance of two children. Stephens's old friend, the stage magician Max Mephisto is appearing in pantomime there, and this forms the backdrop to a somewhat convoluted, almost Agatha Christie-esque investigation.Elly Griffiths writes quite decent prose, but the whole thing felt a bit st [...]

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