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Now You See Them

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The fifth gripping Brighton-based mystery from the bestselling author of the Dr Ruth Galloway series – a must-read for fans of Agatha Christie, cosy crime and TV series such as Grantchester and Midsomer Murders. One after another, young women go missing in Brighton, but who’s to say they didn’t leave of their own free choice? Ten years have passed since the events described The fifth gripping Brighton-based mystery from the bestselling author of the Dr Ruth Galloway series – a must-read for fans of Agatha Christie, cosy crime and TV series such as Grantchester and Midsomer Murders. One after another, young women go missing in Brighton, but who’s to say they didn’t leave of their own free choice? Ten years have passed since the events described in The Vanishing Box. Edgar Stephens is now a Superintendent and married to former DS Emma Holmes. Edgar’s wartime partner in arms, magician Max Mephisto, is a movie star in Hollywood, while his daughter Ruby has her own TV show, Ruby Magic. The funeral of Stan Parks, aka Diablo, actor and wartime comrade to Edgar and Max, throws the gang back together. The reunion sparks all sorts of feelings. Bob Willis, now a DI, is dealing with the disappearance of local schoolgirl Rhonda Miles. Emma, frustrated by living the life of a housewife and mother, keeps thinking how much better she would run the case. She is helped by Sam Collins, a woman reporter also hampered by sexism at work. Sam notices a pattern with other missing girls. Edgar listens to the theory but doesn’t give it much credence. He is preoccupied with the threatened invasion of Brighton by Mods and Rockers on the May Bank Holiday. The case takes a more sinister turn when one of the missing girls is found dead. Then Ruby fails to turn up for a rendezvous and it becomes clear that she too has disappeared. Emma takes risks to track down the killer herself while Edgar is working flat out dealing with violent clashes between rival gangs on Brighton’s seafront. With tension and anger hitting him on all sides, Edgar must keep the coolest of heads to track down the killer.


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The fifth gripping Brighton-based mystery from the bestselling author of the Dr Ruth Galloway series – a must-read for fans of Agatha Christie, cosy crime and TV series such as Grantchester and Midsomer Murders. One after another, young women go missing in Brighton, but who’s to say they didn’t leave of their own free choice? Ten years have passed since the events described The fifth gripping Brighton-based mystery from the bestselling author of the Dr Ruth Galloway series – a must-read for fans of Agatha Christie, cosy crime and TV series such as Grantchester and Midsomer Murders. One after another, young women go missing in Brighton, but who’s to say they didn’t leave of their own free choice? Ten years have passed since the events described in The Vanishing Box. Edgar Stephens is now a Superintendent and married to former DS Emma Holmes. Edgar’s wartime partner in arms, magician Max Mephisto, is a movie star in Hollywood, while his daughter Ruby has her own TV show, Ruby Magic. The funeral of Stan Parks, aka Diablo, actor and wartime comrade to Edgar and Max, throws the gang back together. The reunion sparks all sorts of feelings. Bob Willis, now a DI, is dealing with the disappearance of local schoolgirl Rhonda Miles. Emma, frustrated by living the life of a housewife and mother, keeps thinking how much better she would run the case. She is helped by Sam Collins, a woman reporter also hampered by sexism at work. Sam notices a pattern with other missing girls. Edgar listens to the theory but doesn’t give it much credence. He is preoccupied with the threatened invasion of Brighton by Mods and Rockers on the May Bank Holiday. The case takes a more sinister turn when one of the missing girls is found dead. Then Ruby fails to turn up for a rendezvous and it becomes clear that she too has disappeared. Emma takes risks to track down the killer herself while Edgar is working flat out dealing with violent clashes between rival gangs on Brighton’s seafront. With tension and anger hitting him on all sides, Edgar must keep the coolest of heads to track down the killer.

30 review for Now You See Them

  1. 4 out of 5

    Paromjit

    It has taken this latest addition to Elly Griffiths's historical Stephens and Mephisto series set in Brighton for me to become aware of just how much I love this series. It picks up more than a decade later from events in The Vanishing Box, in the interim fundamental shifts have taken place in the lives of the major characters. It is 1964, Max is now a bona fide movie star living in LA, married to the famous actress, Lydia Lamont, and has two young children, Rocco and Elena. He is now Lord Massi It has taken this latest addition to Elly Griffiths's historical Stephens and Mephisto series set in Brighton for me to become aware of just how much I love this series. It picks up more than a decade later from events in The Vanishing Box, in the interim fundamental shifts have taken place in the lives of the major characters. It is 1964, Max is now a bona fide movie star living in LA, married to the famous actress, Lydia Lamont, and has two young children, Rocco and Elena. He is now Lord Massingham after the death of his father, although he makes no use of the title to his American wife's dismay. His daughter, the 34 year old Ruby is now the fashionable darling of the nation with her popular TV show, Ruby Magic. Edgar is now Superintendent, whilst Bob has been promoted to DI, and there is a new WPC, the 19 year old Meg Connolly, on the police team. Emma Holmes left the police force on marrying Edgar, and is mother to 3 children, Marianne, Sophie, and 10 month old Jonathan. The paths of this close knit group connect once again at the funeral of Stan Parks, The Great Diablo, along with Max and Edgar, was part of The Magic Men, wartime comrades running vital missions in WW2. Being a housewife and mother is not enough for Emma, she sorely misses her previous life as a DS, her dissatisfaction is something Edgar is aware of, correctly intuiting she hankers a return to her previous role in the police, which is just not a realistic possibility. Max too is feeling his own strain of unhappiness, he hankers for his old variety music hall shows, the itinerant lifestyle as a magician, but that has all but disappeared from British cultural life. Now it all about pop stars, like The Beatles, and film stars, attracting huge young crowds of screaming fans. There are violent running battles on the Brighton seafront between the Mods and the Rockers, with the police caught in the middle. Max is ruminating over the loss of the murdered Florence, who he believes he loved, and wondering about the nature of his marriage to Lydia, but his children keep him tethered to his current life. A 16 year old Rhonda Miles, a Roedean school girl, has gone missing, a fanatical follower of the American film star, Bobby Hambro. 2 other women have previously gone missing, with matters coming to a head when the dead body of a woman is discovered on the beach. Danger comes much too close to Max, as Ruby disappears and Emma just cannot stop herself getting involved, resentful, aware that she is much the better detective than both Edgar and Bob. She is joined by her only friends, Sam Collins, local reporter and medium, Astarte Zabini. It is the women, along with WPC Meg, that make the key breaks on the case. The sixties is an era where rampant sexism, racism and anti-gay sentiment make life considerably more challenging. Emma has to forge a path in another direction with a police force unwilling to accommodate married women. Griffiths has a real gift in creating complex characters that you cannot help but care about, getting caught up in their lives and relationships, which hold centre stage as much as the core murder mystery in the novels. A brilliant historical series, capturing the class distinctions and spirit of Britain and Brighton in the 1960s in this addition, dripping with the social and cultural norms and attitudes of the time, amidst a background of the popular culture. Looking forward with great anticipation to the next in the series. Many thanks to Quercus for an ARC.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Diane S ☔

    I started reading this series because I loved her Ruth Galloway mysteries. This is already number five in the Magic men series, and in both series she engines time and place perfectly, though both are markedly different. These characters have grown on me and once again I'm back catching up with old friends. Eleven years have passed snd much has changed in the lives of our main characters. We now find ourselves in the 1960's, mods against bikers, the young girls screaming for a young film star an I started reading this series because I loved her Ruth Galloway mysteries. This is already number five in the Magic men series, and in both series she engines time and place perfectly, though both are markedly different. These characters have grown on me and once again I'm back catching up with old friends. Eleven years have passed snd much has changed in the lives of our main characters. We now find ourselves in the 1960's, mods against bikers, the young girls screaming for a young film star and of course the Beatles. Now too the case surriunds Edgar and Max, young girls are missing and there are few beginning clues. Before it is over the case will become even more personal, markedly do. There will again be a big change in their lives, as Griffiths presents a new angle to upcoming series entries. This series has broad appeal. Lovers of procedurals and historical fiction fans will both enjoy this blending of elements. Those who just love wonderful characters will also find much to enjoy. ARC from Edelweiss.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Liz

    As a huge fan of the Ruth Galloway series, I was thrilled to learn that Elly Griffiths had another series. So, when book five in the Magic Men series became available on netgalley, I jumped at the chance to read it. This story takes you back to 1964. The Magic Men originally came together in WWII. Now Max is an actor in Hollywood and Edgar is a Police Superintendent. The time period allows for the sexism of the day to shine through, like the fact that a female police constable isn’t allowed to d As a huge fan of the Ruth Galloway series, I was thrilled to learn that Elly Griffiths had another series. So, when book five in the Magic Men series became available on netgalley, I jumped at the chance to read it. This story takes you back to 1964. The Magic Men originally came together in WWII. Now Max is an actor in Hollywood and Edgar is a Police Superintendent. The time period allows for the sexism of the day to shine through, like the fact that a female police constable isn’t allowed to drive or have a radio. This time period was at the forefront of the women’s liberation movement and we have Emma feeling the dissatisfaction of being stuck at home. In fact, Griffiths does a great job painting the whole atmosphere of the times, with the mods and rockers, the fashions and the teenyboppers falling over heartthrobs. The book moves at a fast pace. The mystery is a good one and while I had my suspicions, I was kept guessing until almost the end. As you would expect for someone picking up the fifth book in a series without having read the prior entries, it took me a while to get everyone straight and suss out their relationships. But once I did, I really enjoyed the characters, especially the women. In fact, the ending was a treat and I hope means there will be a book six. The book is described as a cozy mystery fit for those that like Agatha Christie, which is a good description. My thanks to netgalley and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for an advance copy of this book.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn

    Where the first four books in this series were set in 1950s Brighton, this fifth episode has leapt ahead 10 years to the 1960s. Mini skirt wearing teenage girls are swooning over the Beatles and Mods and Rockers are ganging up on each other. The Magic Men who were part of a special squad in WWII have all gone their separate ways. Max Mephisto is no longer a variety show magician but a movie star, married to a Hollywood actress in LA and father of two young children and Edgar Stephens is now a po Where the first four books in this series were set in 1950s Brighton, this fifth episode has leapt ahead 10 years to the 1960s. Mini skirt wearing teenage girls are swooning over the Beatles and Mods and Rockers are ganging up on each other. The Magic Men who were part of a special squad in WWII have all gone their separate ways. Max Mephisto is no longer a variety show magician but a movie star, married to a Hollywood actress in LA and father of two young children and Edgar Stephens is now a police Superintendent in Brighton, married to former Detective Emma Holmes with three children. Max is back in Brighton briefly for the funeral of another member of their wartime squad, the Great Diablo, aka Stan Parks, and to look into a possible role in a new movie starring a teenage heart throb. Also he plans to catch up with his adult daughter Ruby, also a magician and now star of her own TV series. This is a case of missing girls, initially three girls from different walks of life who are first thought to have run away. It's more of a cosy mystery than a thriller, despite the involvement of the Brighton police with Max, Emma and a journalist all involved in looking for the girls. The plot is somewhat slow to develop with the police making little headway until a sudden breakthrough at the end. The 1960s setting of this novel in the popular seaside town of Brighton is very atmospheric, particularly with regard to the social and cultural changes underway, such as the rise of pop stars and movie stars, the changing fashions worn by the Mods and the Rockers and more generally adopted by teenagers. The changing role of women is also highlighted with ex DS Emma Holmes unfulfilled as a full-time wife and mother and yearning for the excitement of her old life. This series will appeal to those who enjoy a murder mystery with an authentic historical setting. With many thanks to Netgalley and Houghton-Mifflin Harcourt for a digital ARC to read.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Sandy *The world could end while I was reading and I would never notice*

    EXCERPT: May 1964 At first, Edgar thought he wasn't coming. They were all there in church: Edgar and Emma, Bob and Betty, Queenie in the front pew, sobbing into a lace-edged handkerchief. Even Mrs M was there, her hair white now but as striking as ever in a black cape with a fur collar. Ruby had caused a stir when she entered the church, followed, as ever, by Joe. There were even a few photographers waiting outside, just for the chance to snap the star of 'Ruby Magic', the nation's favourite TV s EXCERPT: May 1964 At first, Edgar thought he wasn't coming. They were all there in church: Edgar and Emma, Bob and Betty, Queenie in the front pew, sobbing into a lace-edged handkerchief. Even Mrs M was there, her hair white now but as striking as ever in a black cape with a fur collar. Ruby had caused a stir when she entered the church, followed, as ever, by Joe. There were even a few photographers waiting outside, just for the chance to snap the star of 'Ruby Magic', the nation's favourite TV show. Ruby swept up the front to sit with Queenie, who welcomed her with a hug. 'Isn't she lovely?' said someone. Edgar looked at Emma but her face was expressionless. And then, as the wheezy music started up, a door banged at the back of the church and Edgar knew. The photographers must have known too because there was a shout outside, something like 'That's him.' Edgar couldn't resist looking round and there he was, in the blackest suit with the thinnest tie, taking off his hat, unchanged by the last eleven years. Max. ABOUT THIS BOOK: A wild mystery with DI Edgar Stephens and the magician Max Mephisto, as they help Edgar’s new wife investigate the disappearance of one of their own in the swinging 1960s. MY THOUGHTS: Set in 1964 against the backdrop of the infamous bank holiday mods and rockers fight on Brighton beach, we catch up with DI Stephens and Max Mephisto eleven years after we last met with them in The Vanishing Box. This was an interesting period in time. A time of Beatlemania, of protest marches against the Vietnam war, the advent of the contraceptive pill (available only to married women), and the emergence of female activists demanding more rights for women, whose role in society began to change as women realised they could have motherhood and a career too. Policing was a completely different ballgame, with trunchons instead of tasers, no kevlar vests or body cameras, very little in the way of forensics, and communication via the unreliable 'walkie talkie'. Elly Griffiths has cleverly interwoven these social changes into the fabric of Now You See Them, a tale of mystery and intrigue that centres around the disappearance of 4 very different girls and women. Edgar not only has to cope with the mounting pressure to find these women, but also with the growing discontent of his wife Emma, who is missing her life as a detective on the force (married women could not work in the police force), and the effects of her 'meddling' in his case. Griffiths has gathered together an interesting cast of characters with real depth and melds them with the changing social and cultural climate to produce an intriguing mystery. Although very different to her Ruth Galloway series, the Stephens and Mephisto series is every bit as good. Highly recommended. But it is probably wise to read the earlier books in the series, set in the 1950s, for the characters back stories. 🚓🛵😍❤.5 THE AUTHOR: Elly Griffiths' Ruth Galloway novels take for their inspiration Elly's husband, who gave up a city job to train as an archaeologist, and her aunt who lives on the Norfolk coast and who filled her niece's head with the myths and legends of that area. Elly has two children and lives near Brighton. DISCLOSURE: Thank you to Hodder Mifflin Harcourt via Netgalley for providing a digital ARC of Now You See Them by Elly Griffiths for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions. Please note: There seems to be two different titles for this book, depending on where it is being published. I read and reviewed Now You See Them, which is also being published under the title of Now You See Her. For an explanation of my rating system please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the about page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com This review and others are also published on Twitter, Amazon and my webpage https://sandysbookaday.wordpress.com/...

  6. 5 out of 5

    Richard

    It is always an event when a new Elly Griffiths book is due out. The chance to receive an advanced reader’s copy (ARC) should not be passed up. This is now the 5th in this series that began with her main characters caught up in making a go of things after World War II. Life in Post War England was a struggle and the charm of these books were the end of the pier shows, variety and where magicians were often topping the bill in theatres. Two wartime colleagues were reunited in what became initially It is always an event when a new Elly Griffiths book is due out. The chance to receive an advanced reader’s copy (ARC) should not be passed up. This is now the 5th in this series that began with her main characters caught up in making a go of things after World War II. Life in Post War England was a struggle and the charm of these books were the end of the pier shows, variety and where magicians were often topping the bill in theatres. Two wartime colleagues were reunited in what became initially known as the Stephens and Mephisto mysteries centred on Brighton, where Edgar Stephens became a detective inspector and Max Mephisto star and travelling magician assisted, whenever he was in town in solving the crimes presented. They have now been rebranded the Brighton Mysteries but Max remains a central character and Edgar, now Superintendent makes this still really a police procedural (but with a magic twist). This compelling addition to this engaging series is set some 11 years after the last one. Consequently, much has changed in the intervening years for these characters. The author manages this with the expertise of the successful novelist she is and integrates the backstory without deviation, hesitation or reputation. It can be read as a stand-alone and would be a get in to anyone new to the series or Ely’s diverse work. Perhaps more challenging to the author was the jump into the 60’s and presenting details some of her reader’s may have memories of and could have lived through themselves. Here Brighton comes into its own. While not like a Graham Greene novel but real and black. This series has always had an edgy feel to it even a decade earlier. No cosy mysteries here. The murders have always been macabre and dark, reflecting the stage magic and mystery of a bygone theatrical day. This is a story of a missing girl where the abduction does not seem initially for ransom. As the investigation expands we see this might not be the first young woman taken but the facts surrounding each disappearance seem confused as each missing person left a note. I loved the grasp of the teenage world; the crush young girls had for film stars and growing music scene like The Beatles. I also appreciated the social commentary that is bound up in the story regarding other social changes. Youth culture, gangs, women’s roles, radio to TV and issue based awareness around sexuality, environment and class. Elly weaves this all into her story which brings colour and depth. In addition she brings a rich love of literature and historical nods to her writing that adds layers and gives substance to this novel. At times you think you’re reading a separate soap, it’s all about Emma, as the writing exposes the struggle a woman has being married, raising the kids and losing her identity without a role outside the home. But Elly repeats this in Max’s character too regarding his marriage and his memories of a precious love returning to Brighton after 11 years. It also works on another level that of the relationships of fathers with their daughters. Here the author shows great insights and a variety of interactions between the various examples in the book. Not deep but a social commentary fully integrated into the story. All the more striking compared to the love or endowment given to sons. This is what made Jane Austin such a great writer and why Elly Griffiths is a quality author as demonstrated here. It is a novel set in 1960s England but it is a story very much for today.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Gail C.

    This is the fifth book in the Magic Men series by Elly Griffiths and my first read of the series. Because I’ve read two other books by Griffiths, I wanted to see if this one held up to what I had already read. Yes, indeed, it held up on all counts. The book begins with the disappearance of a school girl. It is clear from the beginning that the principle characters have relationships that date back to past occurrences, although it isn’t difficult to follow how they relate to each other in this boo This is the fifth book in the Magic Men series by Elly Griffiths and my first read of the series. Because I’ve read two other books by Griffiths, I wanted to see if this one held up to what I had already read. Yes, indeed, it held up on all counts. The book begins with the disappearance of a school girl. It is clear from the beginning that the principle characters have relationships that date back to past occurrences, although it isn’t difficult to follow how they relate to each other in this book. In this series, I believe it would be in the reader’s best interest to read the books in order as it would give the reader the opportunity to understand all the nuances that have been created from personal relationships. As the chief superintendent begins to investigate, his wife, a detective with the police force before she married and left the force to raise a family, it becomes clear the missing girl is one of a series of girls who has disappeared. In addition to the suspicion that this is a serial crime, one of the girls is discovered murdered, which adds to the urgency for a solution. In addition to investigation of the disappearances and murder, there is considerable attention given to the personal relationships between the principle characters. There is the relationship between the chief superintendent and his wife. Prior to this book and probably part of earlier books in the series, it is clear he was a detective inspector and she was his sergeant, along with the current detective inspector who as a secondary role in this book. Other characters who have previous relationships with the couple are a magician turned actor, his daughter, a close friend of the wife who is a reporter, and various other tertiary characters. Curiosity about all these people’s previous relationships is raised as this book is being read, increasing the desire to go back and read the earlier books. The mystery itself does stand alone and there is enough information regarding how the characters relate to each other for the reader to still enjoy the book. That said, I do believe this series is best enjoyed being read from the beginning in order to fully appreciate the different characters, their personalities, and their motivations. My thanks to Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing and NetGalley for providing me an advanced digital reader copy of this book in exchange for an unbiased review.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Bruce Hatton

    This novel takes place ten years after its predecessor The Vanishing Box and we’re now in the era of The Beatles, Carnaby Street and mods and rockers. Ed Stephens is now a superintendent, married to his former sergeant Emma Holmes with whom he has three children. Max Mephisto, after emigrating to the U.S. has become a Hollywood star and is married to a glamorous actress. However, all is not as blissful as the surface suggests. Emma is bored senseless by domesticity and still misses her detective This novel takes place ten years after its predecessor The Vanishing Box and we’re now in the era of The Beatles, Carnaby Street and mods and rockers. Ed Stephens is now a superintendent, married to his former sergeant Emma Holmes with whom he has three children. Max Mephisto, after emigrating to the U.S. has become a Hollywood star and is married to a glamorous actress. However, all is not as blissful as the surface suggests. Emma is bored senseless by domesticity and still misses her detective work. Max still yearns for his days in variety and is mourning his former lover, Florence. The two are reunited at the funeral of their mutual friend, Stan Parks, aka Diablo. Max is also back in England preparing for a film with America’s latest heartthrob, Bobby Hambro, who has a loyal following of (almost exclusively schoolgirl) fans called “Bobbysoxers”. As the funeral ends, Ed is informed that the daughter of a prominent local M.P. is missing. Soon her disappearance is linked to that of two other girls. What follows is a desperate hunt to find the missing girls set against the real-life backdrop of the mods and rockers battle on Brighton beach. Once again, Elly Griffiths manages to capture the spirit of the time - the tensions, prejudices and cultural norms – brilliantly. Plus, of course, injecting some well-rounded, interesting characters into the process. As well as star turns from the usual crew: Ed, Max, Emma, Max’s daughter Ruby, there are also a couple of delightful new female characters: reporter Sam Collins and police constable Meg Connolly. I’m hoping their roles will be enhanced in the next episode of this highly enjoyable series.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Linden

    Ten years have passed since the last Magic Men mystery. Emma is no longer a police officer; she’s married to Edgar, who is now Superintendent, and a mother of 3. Max is back--he married an American, and is just visiting Brighton. An important man’s daughter is missing, and the police start to connect the case with some other disappearances of young women in the area. Then the kidnapping gets very personal, and everyone’s help is needed to before it is too late.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Lee

    I adore Griffiths’ Ruth Galloway book series and also loved her recent standalone The Stranger Diaries but, on a whole, I will admit I have not enjoyed the Stephens/Mephisto (or as it is advertised on the US cover, The Magic Men) series quite as much. The trend continues with Now You See Them. For this, the fifth book in the series, Griffiths has skipped ten years, thus the post war 50s has morphed into the swinging 60s. I really enjoy books set in the 50s, where PTSD from WW2 is so prevalent and I adore Griffiths’ Ruth Galloway book series and also loved her recent standalone The Stranger Diaries but, on a whole, I will admit I have not enjoyed the Stephens/Mephisto (or as it is advertised on the US cover, The Magic Men) series quite as much. The trend continues with Now You See Them. For this, the fifth book in the series, Griffiths has skipped ten years, thus the post war 50s has morphed into the swinging 60s. I really enjoy books set in the 50s, where PTSD from WW2 is so prevalent and am less interested in the 60s as I find the era is just a bit overused generally in books, movies, television etc. The book opens with my favourite character of the series, the Great Diablo, having passed away, bringing everyone back to Brighton for the funeral. Edgar is now the Super and is married to Emma who, as such, has had to resign from the police force. With three children, she is kept busy but largely dissatisfied with her housewife/mother status. Max is married to a famous Hollywood actress and Ruby is the star of her own tv series. Their reunion is disrupted when a young girl from the local boarding school which Emma attended goes missing. The crime itself is satisfying enough, there are a lot of red herrings and, as Max would say, misdirection, meaning I was not really sure whodunnit. I did guess a couple of key points, however and, as per usual, I would have preferred Edgar to be more involved. He takes the backseat yet again though and it's Emma who is the focus of this installment. I have been a bit indifferent towards Emma’s character until now and I’m still not feeling the love completely. I understand Griffiths is using her to highlight some important points, especially when it comes to feminism (as she also does with the introduction of another female police officer, Meg) but sometimes I think writers need to just show the readers misogyny in a more organic way instead of pushing it straight down our throats. Classism and racism are also themes of the book and again, it feels heavy handed. Maybe writers need to remember not every reader is too stupid to understand subtlety. Max’s lovelife is another thing I’m starting to feel indifferent about. Although he turns up married in this book, it’s glaringly obvious he will soon be taking up with yet another different woman and Griffiths will work in yet another love triangle into one of her books. *sigh* Unlike Edgar though, at least Max does get to do some sleuthing, which is a bonus. With the new 60s setting, Griffiths took the opportunity to include the Brighton riot/clash between the Mods and Rockers. This real life historical gang war is always interesting (and so very English!). Out of all the books of the series I thought this one felt much more ‘cosy mystery’ than the others and I recommend it to fans of that genre that are looking for a decent story. Now You See Them is very standalone too. I think new readers will pick up on most of the previous plot points fairly easily. The Zig Zag Girl is still the best of the series but I think there are worse books you could pick up than this and I will probably keep going with the series in the future. 4 out of 5

  11. 4 out of 5

    Clare

    With thanks to Netgalley and Quercus for this ARC in exchange for an open and honest review. Now You See Them had moved to 1960s Brighton when the word teenagers were invented. The Beatles were the original UK boy band, and battles between mods and rockers on the promenade. Times had changed for Edgar and Max. Edgar became a superintendent and married his former sergeant Emma Holmes and had three children. Max went to America where he appeared in a successful film. Max married a film star and they With thanks to Netgalley and Quercus for this ARC in exchange for an open and honest review. Now You See Them had moved to 1960s Brighton when the word teenagers were invented. The Beatles were the original UK boy band, and battles between mods and rockers on the promenade. Times had changed for Edgar and Max. Edgar became a superintendent and married his former sergeant Emma Holmes and had three children. Max went to America where he appeared in a successful film. Max married a film star and they live in Beverley Hills with their two children. Max`s firstborn Ruby became an actress and got on her series playing a magician. Edgar and Max met again at the funeral of fellow Magic Men Diablo. Max was. back in England to star in a film with heartthrob Bobby Hambro. Shortly afterwards a girl disappears from Roedean School. The girl had been kidnapped years earlier but was released. Edgar soon discovers that other teenage girls have gone missing. Edgar along with newly promoted Bob Willis and WPC Meg Connolly try to track the girls down. After releasing The Stranger Diaries last year, I thought Elly Griffiths had stopped writing the Stephens and Mephisto mysteries. I was so excited when I heard there would be a fifth book. I was pleased that the series had moved to the swinging sixties and away from the shadow of the second world war. The mystery of the missing girls was interesting and I enjoyed reading about Meg going undercover in London as a Bobby Dazzler groupie. I was more interested in the lives of Emma and Max. I was rather annoyed that Emma used herself as bait to lure the kidnapper. I couldn't believe she put herself at risk so she could play detective again. Emma had a surprise at the book which i think may lead to further books. I look forward to reading what happens next.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kate

    It's so good to spend time with Max, Edgar and Emma again. Time has moved on and things have changed for them all but now they must work together again to stop a killer. This is a lovingly developed story in which character and setting matter more than the plot and, as usual, Elly Griffiths writes beautifully. This will always be one of my very favourite series. Review to follow shortly on For Winter Nights.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Susan Johnson

    Diablo would have preferred applause at his funeral just as he liked it in life but all he got was tears. The WWII special ops gang have gathered 10 years after the last book (now 1964) was concluded to pay their last respects to the old vaudevillian. And how things have changed. Edgar and Emma are married and have three children. He is now Police Superintendent in Brighton. Max has become a movie star in Hollywood and lives there with his movie star wife and two children. Ruby is the star of h Diablo would have preferred applause at his funeral just as he liked it in life but all he got was tears. The WWII special ops gang have gathered 10 years after the last book (now 1964) was concluded to pay their last respects to the old vaudevillian. And how things have changed. Edgar and Emma are married and have three children. He is now Police Superintendent in Brighton. Max has become a movie star in Hollywood and lives there with his movie star wife and two children. Ruby is the star of her successful TV show. They are all thriving. As good as it seems on the surface, there is tension underneath. Emma is discovering being a wife and mother is not completely satisfying and she misses her police detective job. Both Max and Ruby are restless in their careers and looking for more challenges. As they all gather, girls start disappearing. When the daughter of a rich man goes missing, the search intensifies until someone famous is gone too and then a member of one of their own families is taken. With nerves stretched thin, a minor riot between the mods and the rockers breaks out. I had never heard of this so I looked it up on Wikipedia. There were two groups in England. The mods were a scooter riding group who liked nice fashion and softer music. The rockers liked motorcycles and the Beatles. This made me smile but it was apparently a real problem. The characters have really grown and evolved and this is, by far, my favorite book of the series. It can be read as a stand alone as the author does an excellent job of catching everybody up to date. Griffiths real strength, in my opinion, is her character development and she does not disappoint in this book. There is a delightful new, young female detective who makes her first appearance. All in all, this is a delightful book and well worth the time spent reading it. When it was over I was slightly disappointed. I wanted to find out what was going to happen next and can't wait for the next book.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Sherrie

    I found the fact that this book had jumped 10 years in time since the last one in the series quite disconcerting to start with, but still enjoyed the story after a while.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Paula

    Barely a 6.A couple of new characters,no magic,and the mystery's solve is plain silly.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Lynn Horton

    Now You See Them is another interesting read in the Magic Men series. I enjoy Griffiths’ work, although I do prefer her Ruth Galloway books to these. The story is engaging and interesting, and the pacing is good. I found the mod-versus-rocker conflict to be a unique twist and smirked at some of the gender conflict. My only negative comment is that there are so many characters that I kept getting them confused, which distracted me from the storyline. Griffiths is a very good author and usually dis Now You See Them is another interesting read in the Magic Men series. I enjoy Griffiths’ work, although I do prefer her Ruth Galloway books to these. The story is engaging and interesting, and the pacing is good. I found the mod-versus-rocker conflict to be a unique twist and smirked at some of the gender conflict. My only negative comment is that there are so many characters that I kept getting them confused, which distracted me from the storyline. Griffiths is a very good author and usually distinguishes characters well, but for me, the story would’ve been more enjoyable if she’d pared down the participants a little. Recommended.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Kathy

    I can't think of any of my reading friends who aren't familiar with my love for Elly Griffiths' writing and my ardent devotion to her character Ruth Galloway of the Ruth Galloway series, and a good many of them have responded to my enthusiasm and started reading that series, too. Now, I think they are beginning to realize that I am also an advocate for Griffiths' Magic Men Mysteries (Stephens and Mephisto series). Unlike the present-day setting of the Ruth Galloway series, the Magic Men Mysterie I can't think of any of my reading friends who aren't familiar with my love for Elly Griffiths' writing and my ardent devotion to her character Ruth Galloway of the Ruth Galloway series, and a good many of them have responded to my enthusiasm and started reading that series, too. Now, I think they are beginning to realize that I am also an advocate for Griffiths' Magic Men Mysteries (Stephens and Mephisto series). Unlike the present-day setting of the Ruth Galloway series, the Magic Men Mysteries are set in the past, 50s and now 60s in Brighton, England. Now You See Them (book #5) takes place ten years after the 4th book, The Vanishing Box. The characters go from December 1953 to May 1964, so they are quite naturally living different lives in Now You See Them. I feel it necessary to warn those readers just starting the series or not up to #5 yet that it's impossible to talk about this new book without spoilers to the previous ones. So, May 1964 sees our characters in new phases of their lives. Edgar Stephens is now Superintendent in the police force in Brighton, and he is married to the former DS Emma Holmes, with three children. Max Mephisto has spent the last decade in Hollywood, becoming a movie star and marrying one of his leading ladies, with whom he has two young children. Of course, Max already had a daughter, the beautiful and talented Ruby, who now, at 34, stars in one of Britain's most popular television shows, Ruby Magic. The regular character roster is rounded out with Detective Inspector Bob Willis, who worked with Emma as the lesser skilled of the two, and the newcomer, nineteen-year-old Meg Connolly, who seems to be following in Emma's footsteps as a crack detective with only a WPC rank so far. The funeral in Brighton of Edgar's and Max's former Magic Men comrade The Great Diablo, aka Stanley Parks, has reunited the group of friends and colleagues. Max and Diablo had continued their talents at trickery and magic employed in their WWII missions in their chosen careers on the stage, and Edgar had continued the practice of serving his country or fellow citizens by choosing the police force. Now, after their paths diverged, the bond still remains a strong one. Ruby, who was close to Diablo, too, calling him Uncle Stan, is attending the funeral in all her glamorous glory, enjoying her celebrity status wherever she goes. Emma is a bit wistful as she reminisces about her past days on the police force when she felt more alive than staying home and raising children. But, life does go on, after the deaths of loved ones and the life choices one makes. That doesn't mean, of course, that clever people can't make new life choices. While at the reception after the funeral, word is brought to DI Willis and Superintendent Stephens of a missing sixteen-year-old girl from Roedean, a school for girls where Emma had attended. The girl is a keen fan of the American movie star Bobby Hambro, who is currently in London, so it's thought she might have gone there. With the discovery that two other young women have gone missing, the theory that the disappearances are abductions rather than voluntary departure becomes the prevailing course. After one of the girls is found dead on a seaside walkway, there's no doubt that someone is kidnapping them. When Ruby goes missing, too, Max is once more back to involvement in a case Edgar is investigating. And, Emma's unrest at being out of the loop in the intensity of police work has her secretly working with her journalist friend Sam Collins to uncover the person behind the abductions. Emma is eager to show that her detecting skills are as strong as ever, and she seems set on besting her husband and the new police woman, Meg Connally. While Emma's motives may be a bit skewed, at heart she wants to solve this case and bring the young women home safely. It seems a bit like old times with the involvement on both sides of the investigation, one in danger and others desperately trying to bring resolution before tragedy can strike again. The characters and the story are, as always, exceptional in this series, and Brighton seems the perfect setting in which to view the history of change in Britain. Elly Griffiths does such an outstanding job of weaving the history into the story and into the character's lives. Emma's dissatisfaction at being unable to pursue police work is due to her being a married woman, something the police force didn't allow. The leap to the 1960s was a brilliant move on the author's part, as it allows the many changes that were churning for not only women, but culture itself, to be brought forth. It allows the characters to grow in ways that only the 60s could let them. Griffiths' organic insertion of The Beatles and the Mods and screaming fans gives the sense of time and place that every great read with a historical setting demands. That actual events are given stage in the story really reinforces the authenticity. The Brighton clash of the Mods and the Rockers that took place on that Banking Holiday weekend was deftly used as the climax to the rising action of the story and its resolution. Griffiths' writing chops combine this history and story and character relationships into a thrilling read that keeps a pace of unsurpassed excellence. A series should always be evolving, and with Now You Seem Them, Elly Griffiths has shown that she meets that challenge head on.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Darla

    Girls are disappearing and the Magic Men need to figure out how to undo the trick of this unknown man lurking in the shadows -- promising to turn girls into models. Ten years have gone by since Stevens & Mephisto #4 and it is 1964. With WW II so distant in the rearview mirror, the tumultuous 60's are in focus. Max and Edgar both have young children. Diablo is dead. Emma is a stay-at-home mom. Ruby is a celebrity in her own right. There is a new recruit at the police station and she has some skil Girls are disappearing and the Magic Men need to figure out how to undo the trick of this unknown man lurking in the shadows -- promising to turn girls into models. Ten years have gone by since Stevens & Mephisto #4 and it is 1964. With WW II so distant in the rearview mirror, the tumultuous 60's are in focus. Max and Edgar both have young children. Diablo is dead. Emma is a stay-at-home mom. Ruby is a celebrity in her own right. There is a new recruit at the police station and she has some skills. With references to many of the old tricks and cameo appearances of some favorite supporting characters, this one kept me engaged. Formatting for the switching of POVs was a bit choppy in my ARC. I trust that will be better defined in the final product. Thank you Houghton Mifflin and NetGalley for a digital ARC in exchange for an honest review.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Elaine Tomasso

    I would like to thank Netgalley and Quercus Books for an advance copy of Now You See Them, the fifth novel to feature Superintendent Edgar Stephens of the Brighton police and magician turned film star Max Mephisto. Time has moved on for the characters and it’s now 1964. Max is back in Brighton, having spent the last 11 years in Los Angeles, and Edgar has been promoted to Superintendent. Life has changed for them but crime still exists so Edgar is soon busy investigating the disappearance of schoo I would like to thank Netgalley and Quercus Books for an advance copy of Now You See Them, the fifth novel to feature Superintendent Edgar Stephens of the Brighton police and magician turned film star Max Mephisto. Time has moved on for the characters and it’s now 1964. Max is back in Brighton, having spent the last 11 years in Los Angeles, and Edgar has been promoted to Superintendent. Life has changed for them but crime still exists so Edgar is soon busy investigating the disappearance of schoolgirl Rhonda Miles. Things take a more serious turn when it appears that Rhonda is not the first young woman to disappear from Brighton and may not be the last. I thoroughly enjoyed Now You See Them which held my attention from start to finish, not just with the crime element but with the interplay between the characters and their developing lives. Despite magic, which has always been an integral part of the series, not playing a large part in this novel I feel that this is the best novel in the series so far with Ms Griffiths’ playing to her strengths and concentrating on her characterisation. Edgar has achieved promotion and is relatively content in his marriage to the former DS Emma Holmes but Emma is unhappy in her role as housewife and mother of three. Max, forever restless, is wondering about his choices, did he do the right thing moving to Los Angeles and marrying film star Lydia Lamont? Then there’s his troubled relationship with grown up daughter, Ruby, who has a successful career of her own as an actress. I loved the 1960s setting with its offer of hope and change as it just seems so apt for the characters. I also loved Emma’s solution to her unrest - now I can’t wait for the next novel to see how it plays out. Ms Griffiths does a sterling job with the period detail and it’s in the detail, most people don’t have a phone or a television because they were expensive. This is the childhood I remember, not the usual fictional assumption that they were readily available and affordable. There are some nice vignettes of teenage fandom with the object of their desire being American film star Bobby Hambro rather than the Beatles and no novel about Brighton in the 60s could be authentic without mention of the Mods and Rockers fights in the town. The crime element takes a bit of a back seat to the personal with various characters involved in the investigation and there being no coherent strategy, nonetheless it works and is the glue that holds the novel together. Some of the twists are quite unexpected and it gets quite exciting towards the end. Now You See Them is a good read which I have no hesitation in recommending.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Joy Smith

    The story started out slowly, and the preceding story--11 years ago--sounded more interesting, but eventually I got to know the characters and learn about what happened back then, and what's happening with everyone now, and when things picked up farther along, the mystery and suspense really drew me in, and the climax--though I saw that coming--was riveting with a twist that I enjoyed. (It's about time!) And the ending was satisfying. (I was really worried; one of the kidnapped victims was murde The story started out slowly, and the preceding story--11 years ago--sounded more interesting, but eventually I got to know the characters and learn about what happened back then, and what's happening with everyone now, and when things picked up farther along, the mystery and suspense really drew me in, and the climax--though I saw that coming--was riveting with a twist that I enjoyed. (It's about time!) And the ending was satisfying. (I was really worried; one of the kidnapped victims was murdered. What is happening to the other women and girls?) The setting (recent history) was different, and I enjoyed the author's background notes.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Kathleen

    #NowYouSeeThem #NetGalley "The fifth gripping Stephens & Mephisto mystery from the bestselling author of the Dr Ruth Galloway series - a must-read for fans of Agatha Christie and Robert Galbraith. DCI Edgar Stephens, Detective Sergeants Emma Holmes and Bob Willis, and of course magician Max Mephisto, are facing a brave new world: the 1960s. Max is a huge TV star in the USA, and life in Brighton has settled down for the three police officers." I just loved this one and have been waiting for it.. I #NowYouSeeThem #NetGalley "The fifth gripping Stephens & Mephisto mystery from the bestselling author of the Dr Ruth Galloway series - a must-read for fans of Agatha Christie and Robert Galbraith. DCI Edgar Stephens, Detective Sergeants Emma Holmes and Bob Willis, and of course magician Max Mephisto, are facing a brave new world: the 1960s. Max is a huge TV star in the USA, and life in Brighton has settled down for the three police officers." I just loved this one and have been waiting for it.. I gobbled it down, actually and hated for it to end. Review will be published in the Fall. Thanks NetGalley HMH for the ARC! So very excited to read this 5th book in the series, hoping they go on forever? Eleven years after we last left this group they came together for a funeral in Brighton. It is well into an new decade and one with changes, both Max and Edgar are married with children, although on different continents. Emma and Ruby along with many others are wishing to be more fulfilled, although both are living the life they had wished for. Emma misses being a Detective Sgt. and Ruby feels that allure also. They are not prepared with where that wistfulness will take them. A series of disappearances, which eventually include Ruby and Ed and Emma's oldest daughter thrust everyone in their group, as well as others in danger. Terrifically exciting with a well plotted mystery, with superb character development. Truly a winner.! Counting the months until the next ( with hints to the future)

  22. 4 out of 5

    Bebe (Sarah) Brechner

    The Magic Men series is fabulous fun! Griffiths brings the fifth story into a setting many years after the last one. This is a bit disconcerting at first, but quickly steps into the rich, suspenseful story readers have come to expect. All the favorite characters of the past stories are unexpectedly together again. Griffiths also brings a focus on former detective Emma Holmes, who is bored with her life as wife to Edgar, of the original Magic Men and now head of the detective unit. Emma featured The Magic Men series is fabulous fun! Griffiths brings the fifth story into a setting many years after the last one. This is a bit disconcerting at first, but quickly steps into the rich, suspenseful story readers have come to expect. All the favorite characters of the past stories are unexpectedly together again. Griffiths also brings a focus on former detective Emma Holmes, who is bored with her life as wife to Edgar, of the original Magic Men and now head of the detective unit. Emma featured in earlier stories, but now she has three children and is chafing at her stay-at-home role. This new perspective is a fascinating element to the series. There's plenty of excitement and great research into the time period's controversial culture wars between the Mods and the Rockers.

  23. 4 out of 5

    David Gilchrist

    My 5* review of 'Now you see Them" by Elly Griffiths. Another story set in Brighton with Max and Edgar back in harness working to resolve the mystery of girls going missing, along with a host of other supporting characters. This author writes and develops characters better than most. Though set in Brighton not too cosy touching on racism, sexism, homophobia along with misogyny the issues of the day in the 1960,s.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Susan

    Griffiths has jumped her characters eleven years into their future, and life has changed for them in unexpected ways. Edgar is now Brighton's police superintendent, happily married to Emma, with three beautiful children. His old friend Max has left England and the dying variety stage for Hollywood, where he, too, is married--to a film star--with two children. Max's eldest daughter Ruby is a television idol and one of the best-known women in England. When a schoolgirl runs away, Edgar is at first Griffiths has jumped her characters eleven years into their future, and life has changed for them in unexpected ways. Edgar is now Brighton's police superintendent, happily married to Emma, with three beautiful children. His old friend Max has left England and the dying variety stage for Hollywood, where he, too, is married--to a film star--with two children. Max's eldest daughter Ruby is a television idol and one of the best-known women in England. When a schoolgirl runs away, Edgar is at first dismissive of her father's claim that she was kidnapped. But Sam, a local reporter and friend of Emma's, finds that there are a few other girls who disappeared, seemingly of their own volition, but under similar circumstances. Then one of the missing girls is found dead, and Ruby doesn't show up for work.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Barbara

    I enjoy this series by Elly Griffiths as much as the Ruth Galloway series. This one, as usual, is set in Brighton and includes an important piece of social history. The Mods and Rockers riots in 1963.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Julie Chapman

    Just couldn't get immersed in this. I thought at first that it was the era in which it was set.... But it clearly wasn't. I found the characters uninteresting and the storyline rather slow. I have read The Crossing Places and thoroughly enjoyed that one so don't know what went wrong here. 🤔

  27. 4 out of 5

    Paul

    Now You See Them – A Trip back into the swinging sixties It is Brighton 1963, Edgar Stephens is now married and been promoted to the position of Superintendent and is happily married to Emma, his former detective sergeant. Emma is now a stay at home parent to their children, even though she still hankers for her days back on the job. At a funeral of an old friend, and stage magician in Brighton, and brings back together the friends who knew him so well. Edgar Stephens and Emma are in attendance, Now You See Them – A Trip back into the swinging sixties It is Brighton 1963, Edgar Stephens is now married and been promoted to the position of Superintendent and is happily married to Emma, his former detective sergeant. Emma is now a stay at home parent to their children, even though she still hankers for her days back on the job. At a funeral of an old friend, and stage magician in Brighton, and brings back together the friends who knew him so well. Edgar Stephens and Emma are in attendance, along with many others when his war time colleague and now international Hollywood star, Max Mephisto is also there, as is his daughter. When the daughter of a Surry Member of Parliament goes missing from Roedean school Stephens and his team are on the case. As more people start going missing, of all ages but female of various ages, and the pressure becomes heavy upon their shoulders. Emma at the same time wishes to know more about what happened and how she can investigate the matter with her children in tow. While in the background, Edgar Stephens also has a bank holiday invasion of mods and rockers congregating on the sea front. Both sets of young people wish to cause mayhem, drink and fight, unfortunately against each other. It is during this chaos that Stephens’ daughter is taken, possibly by the kidnapper. As always Elly Griffiths has written an exciting and well researched thriller that will keep you on edge from beginning to end. The Brighton Mysteries are always a fun read and make a change from the usual crime novel and is very much to be welcomed. I do not know how as an author can juggle humour, murder with a mixture of nostalgia into an exciting read. You really will enjoy this book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Lizzie Hayes

    Brighton May 1964 and Edgar Stephens is attending the funeral of an old friend a magician known as the Great Diablo, aka Stan Parks. Lost in his memories a door banging at the back of the church brings Edgar back to the present and there is Max Mephisto, looking unchanged by the last eleven years. Much has changed for the friends who served in the war together as part of a group called the Magic Men. Edgar is now a Police Superintendent and has married his former sergeant Emma Holmes. Max is now Brighton May 1964 and Edgar Stephens is attending the funeral of an old friend a magician known as the Great Diablo, aka Stan Parks. Lost in his memories a door banging at the back of the church brings Edgar back to the present and there is Max Mephisto, looking unchanged by the last eleven years. Much has changed for the friends who served in the war together as part of a group called the Magic Men. Edgar is now a Police Superintendent and has married his former sergeant Emma Holmes. Max is now a Hollywood movie star and is married to the film star Lydia Lamont, and they have two children. And Max’s daughter Ruby, by a former liaison with a snake charmer, has her own TV show – Ruby Magic. Catching up after the funeral the friends’ reminiscences are interrupted when Bob Willis, now DI Willis takes a call that a schoolgirl has gone missing from the boarding school Roedean, situated on the coast just outside Brighton. The missing girl Rhonda is the daughter of the MP Sir Crispian Miles, the latter having had to wait while Edgar is fetched from the funeral is kicking up a fuss with words such as ‘It’s a disgrace. What do I pay my taxes for?’ It transpires that delay in the school reporting the absence was occasioned by Rhonda having left a note saying she was going to London. Interviewing her friends reveal that she was besotted by the young film star Bobby Hambro and having heard he was in London had gone to see him. As Edgar gets the investigation underway two other instance of missing girls come to light, and the investigation ‘opens up in several directions. WPC Connolly is certainly proving her worth, as Edgar says to Emma ‘she’s a bright girl’ and Emma grinds her teeth, This is the fifth book in the series, and it was a clever move by the author to take the characters on eleven years and for the reader to learn how they had all developed. Not only is it interesting how she has moved their lives on but gives great scope for future books. Like all good stories, on the surface things look good but underneath maybe not so perfect. Emma and Edgar now have three children, Marianne 8, Sophie 8 and Jonathan just 10 months. She has a husband she loves and lives in a large comfortable house in Brighton but is that enough for a bright woman with a taste for detection. In 1953 when a policewoman married, she had to give up her job in the police force and Emma misses it. But her longing to be involved may impair her judgement. Max has been offered another film, but he is at heart a magician used to his audience been amazed by his act, is Hollywood right for him? And Brighton holds memories, that he hasn’t ever let go As the investigation takes a dramatic turn, the police have to contend with a threat posed by a battle between the mods and rockers who are causing chaos, and a rumour that another thousand are coming down from London. A terrific entry in this excellent series. Several tantalising hooks at the end leave me wanting to read the next one now! Highly recommended. ------ Reviewer: Lizzie Sirett

  29. 5 out of 5

    Gill

    Girls begin to go missing in Brighton. It’s 1964 and Superintendent Edgar Stephens is under even more pressure to solve the crime when a prominent (and pompous) MP’s daughter vanishes from Roedean, the famous private school. It’s the time of Mods and Rockers on the beach, the recognition of ‘the teenager’- a new idea from the USA, the Beatles, Bobby Hambro - a young American heartthrob actor who is in the UK, miniskirts, ‘housewives’ – when women were expected to give up the career for ‘family’, Girls begin to go missing in Brighton. It’s 1964 and Superintendent Edgar Stephens is under even more pressure to solve the crime when a prominent (and pompous) MP’s daughter vanishes from Roedean, the famous private school. It’s the time of Mods and Rockers on the beach, the recognition of ‘the teenager’- a new idea from the USA, the Beatles, Bobby Hambro - a young American heartthrob actor who is in the UK, miniskirts, ‘housewives’ – when women were expected to give up the career for ‘family’, and institutional sexism(!) with female police officers being entrusted only lowly tasks, not allowed to drive police cars or use a radio (it’s full of fascinating, infuriating snippets such as these). We meet the main characters at the funeral of Stan Parks the ‘Great Diablo’, a famed magician. Max Mephisto (who has worked previously with Sup. Stephens but since left to live in the USA for 11 years) returns to England to attend and his estranged daughter Ruby is also there. Many of the attenders have been in previous books of this series (unread) but this book is a read alone - albeit alluding to fascinating-sounding cases in the past, which I have yet to discover!) The pace is fast and flowing, the subject is dealt with gently - perhaps reflecting another era a bit too softly; but it all adds to the charm and style in which the book is written. With all the hardcore crime novels which abound nowadays, it’s rather nice to read a good, old fashioned tale. It has a cast of endearing characters - coping with post war social changes, and an exciting plot - a 'comfy' read.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Hannelore Cheney

    Thank you NetGalley and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for the eARC. We're back in Brighton, 11 years after the previous in the series - it's now 1964 and the mods and rockers are expected to clash on the upcoming Bank Holiday weekend. A young girl is missing as well, so Edgar Stephens, now a Detective Superintendent, has his hands full. He and his team soon find out other girls have gone missing as well. Then one of them is found murdered. It was so good to be back in the company of Edgar, Emma, Ruby Thank you NetGalley and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for the eARC. We're back in Brighton, 11 years after the previous in the series - it's now 1964 and the mods and rockers are expected to clash on the upcoming Bank Holiday weekend. A young girl is missing as well, so Edgar Stephens, now a Detective Superintendent, has his hands full. He and his team soon find out other girls have gone missing as well. Then one of them is found murdered. It was so good to be back in the company of Edgar, Emma, Ruby and Max Mephisto. Max has spent the last 10 years in the States acting, having married a beautiful actress and now the father of 2 young children. Ruby, his grown daughter, is now the most popular tv actress in the UK. Emma and Edgar have 3 children and the antics of little Johnny gave me a few chuckles while I felt sympathetic towards Emma's missing her police job. Bobby Hambro is a Hollywood heartthrob who is in Brighton planning a movie, trying to get Max as his co-star and maybe a thread connecting the murder and disappearance of the girls? WPC Meg Connolly was my favorite character, I hope we get to know her even better in the next book. The 1960's atmosphere was great. I visited England in the 60's and felt quite nostalgic reading this story. Definitely recommended!

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