Review: I love Frank Peretti's writing style. His characters are very realistic. Illusion had all of that and more. For me I found the beginning very difficult because it was one tragedy after another. Dane lost his wife in a car accident; Mandy/Eloise loses her father, mother and essentially her life. I found for me that there was a lot of magic and I found that to take up a lot of the book. While interesting for a while it became stale. The relationship between Dane & Mandy/Eloise was difficult and challenging. There was a lot of mystery where I felt like I was missing essential information to sort through any of the events going on. The ending had a lot of wrap up that placated the events for me I just was not sure I could buy it. I feel very sad that I did not enjoy it more and some of it may be the hype I had about the return of Frank Peretti. I do believe I will read his next book and more than anything I am glad that he is better from his illness of the past. It is for that I am most happy with.
I would like to thank Net Galley and Howard Books for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone.
When I was asked to review a PDF copy of Frank Perretti's latest release, Illusion, how could I say no? It was Perretti after all. It was essentially accepted sight (and plot) unseen and unknown. In all honesty, I was a bit surprised.
When stage magician Dane loses his wife Mandy and magic partner of forty years, he is understandably devastated. What is less understandable however, is when he meets a young woman who so deeply resembles his wife when he first met her that its frightening.
Dane soon finds himself plunged into a mystifying world of cutting-edge, secretive science research (read: science fiction) as he tries to unweave the tangles surrounding the arrival of this young woman in his life. I can't really say more than that without doing some major plot reveals, but let's just say it's pretty out there.
Long-time readers of Perretti might be surprised by the main-stream writing style that is present throughout the book - there isn't a lot of faith thrown into the mix, as with his previous works.
In all honesty, I'm not sure I would have accepted a review copy if I'd known so much of the book would revolve around stage magic, tricks, theatrics, and the like. At times it even seemed a bit occultish (but don't worry, there is a sci-fi explanation for the events, even if it is complicated and hard to follow even for an experienced sci-fi reader).
The writing is still engaging, mysterious, with a good dose of, "What's going on here?" It's a clean read, but not one with a significant spiritual message.