Mrs. Houdini: A Novel Book Review

There is an old saying about men and women:

‘Behind every great man┬áthere’s a great woman’

In 2017, Mrs. Houdini: A Novel, by Victoria Kelly hit bookstores. The novel is the story of Bess Houdini, who is best remembered as the wife of legendary magician Harry Houdini. The story moves between two time periods: after Harry’s death and during their many decades of marriage. After he dies, Bess does her best to reach him in the other world.

Though they were of different faiths and different temperaments (Bess was Catholic and easygoing and Harry was Jewish and passionate), they made it work. Bess, in addition to being part of her husband’s act, took care of the behind-the-scenes duties that were not seen by the public. When she meets a young photographer who wants to help to reconnect with Harry, she learns that his magic may have been more than a fantasy.

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I really enjoyed this book. It reminded me of The Other Einstein. Bess is not just the pretty assistant in barely there clothing or the wife stuck in the domestic sphere. She is an integral part of her husband’s career and life. Without her, he would not become the legend whose life and work still inspire magicians today.

Do I recommend it? Yes.

Mrs. Houdini: A Novel is available wherever books are sold.

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Throwback Thursday: Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew (2008 to 2011)

These days, it seems that reality television knows no bounds.

Between 2008 and 2011, Celebrity Rehab with Dr. Drew aired on VH1. Led by Dr. Drew Pinsky, the raison d’etre of the program was to help celebrities break their addictions to drugs and alcohol.

I have mixed feelings about this reality show. This is obviously an issue that is deeply personal and requires a lot of emotional excavation to get to the bottom of. While it takes away some of the stigma from addiction, it also comes off as slightly voyeuristic. Someone else’s pain should not be entertainment for another.

Do I recommend it? Maybe.

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