★ Fans of magic, mystery, and debates on the supernatural will devour Noyes’s take on Houdini.
— School Library Journal, starred review

A Junior Library Guild Selection

A 2017 Washington Post Best Children's Book

A 2017 Barnes and Noble Best Book

A 2017 Tablet Magazine Best Jewish Children's Book

A NCSS-CBC Notable Social Studies List Title

A 2018 Bank Street College Best Children's Book of the Year

A 2018 VOYA Nonfiction Honor Award

A 2019 Texas Topaz Nonfiction Reading List Title

A Massachusetts Book Award Must Read Title

“With flair and facts, Noyes tells the dramatic and moving story of Harry Houdini's friendship with Arthur Conan Doyle and the debunking of fake spiritualism. I loved it!” —Deborah Heiligman, National Book Award Finalist and Printz Honor–winning author of Charles and Emma and Vincent and Theo

“Readers will be unable to escape the appeal of Deborah Noyes’s new book with such in-depth research and quirky characters.” —Kirby Larson, Newbery Honor–winning author of Hattie Big Sky

"Whether or not young readers are intrigued by ghosts or magic tricks, Noyes’s book treats them to colorful lessons in history, theatrics — and skepticism."--The Washington Post

"Noyes' engaging narrative explores how Houdini's public crusade to expose spiritualism as bunk and mediums as frauds strained his relationship with Conan Doyle. The account is illustrated with archival material and densely populated with odd, outrageous characters....A compelling true story of magic, ghosts, science, friendship, deception, feuding, and sleuthing told with great flair." --Kirkus Reviews

"Packed with photographs and sidebars, this is a fast-moving presentation that manages to be both respectful of persons often considered gullible in retrospect while firmly siding with Houdini in his conclusion that spiritualism has not proved its case." —Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

"Noyes offers compelling tidbits about the many ways spiritualists performed their tricks, and helpful historical context for the popularity of spiritualism. Houdini’s feud with avowed spiritualist Arthur Conan Doyle is particularly fascinating . . . Noyes’ attention to Houdini’s outsize personality—a key component of his campaign against spiritualists—adds compelling depth. A worthwhile addition to any nonfiction section, and ideal for kids intrigued by historical oddities." —Booklist

"The title has an appealing layout with frequent sidebars, copious photographs and archival theater posters, and a page border that subtly contributes to the book’s Victorian flavor and spooky mood...intriguing."--School Library Review (starred review)

"[S]trange, beautifully designed... and sneakily affecting."--Tablet magazine





THE MAGICIAN AND THE SPIRITS. Copyright (c) 2017 Deborah Noyes. Published by Viking Children's Books. All rights reserved.