Review: Smoke and Mirrors by Elly Griffiths


Title: Smoke and Mirrors { DI Stephens & Max Mephisto #2}

Author: Elly Griffiths

Published: Quercus November 2015

Status: Read from November 16 to 20, 2015  -I own a copy courtesy Quercus/Netgalley

My Thoughts:

The second book in Elly Griffiths series featuring DI Stephens, and actor/magician Max Mephisto is set in Brighton, about a year after the events in the Zig Zag Girl, during the winter of 1951.

When two young children go missing, and are later found dead in a snow bank surrounded by sweets, DI Edgar Stephens, and his officers, Emma Holmes and Bob Willis, are tasked to investigate. With a frightened community demanding that the killer of “Hansel and Gretel” be found, and little evidence to go on, Stephens turns to his old friend Max for information after drawing a possible link to the theatrical scene.

I was a little disappointed that Max didn’t have a larger role in Smoke and Mirrors. I enjoyed their partnership in The Zig Zag Girl, Edgar’s cynical nature contrasts well with Max’s flamboyance. Emma and Bob are solid characters though, and I liked learning more about them, particularly Emma’s experience as a female officer during the time period.

The mystery in Smoke and Mirrors is well crafted, and interesting. Griffiths plays up the darker themes of Grimm’s fairytales to great effect, and skilfully injects red herrings to keep you guessing,

One of the strengths of this series remains its sense of time and place. The author wonderfully evokes the social climate of post war England, and the ambience of Brighton.

Smoke and Mirrors can be read as a stand alone, but the experience is richer if you are familiar with the first book. I hope there will be more.

Available via

Quercus I Amazon US I Amazon UK I Amazon AU I   BookDepository

 Iboomerang-books_long I Booktopia via Booko


1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? | book'd out

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