As If By Magic
On a stormy night in October 1923, the destitute and feverish George Lassiter breaks into a house in Mayfair to which he feels strangely drawn. He craves food and shelter but he gets more than he bargains for when he witnesses the apparent murder of a beautiful woman. He flees from the scene straight into the arms of a passing policeman – but, when the house is searched, the body has vanished.
George is forced to conclude it was all a delirious nightmare. With help from his friend Jack Haldean he turns his attention instead to recovering his missing legacy. A calculating murderer is on the loose in London and Jack is on his trail.
The third in the Jack Haldean series, As if by Magic is an old-fashioned detective story in which characters seem to polarise into two categories – ‘thoroughly decent’ and ‘utter rotter’. Even the more sordid elements of the plot are touched on with a delicate hand so as not to shock sensitive readers. Unlike many amateur sleuths Jack’s involvement with ongoing police investigations is made plausible by his friendship with Inspector Bill Rackham and his own fame as a writer. An entertaining bit of escapism.
296 (UK), 288 (US)