Masters of Mystery

The Strange Friendship of Arthur Conan Doyle and Harry Houdini

By Christopher Sandford
(Palgrave MacMillan, Hardcover, 9780230619500, 281pp.)

Publication Date: November 22, 2011

List Price: $27.00*
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Description
Renowned mystery author Arthur Conan Doyle and famous illusionist Harry Houdini first met in 1920, during the magician's tour of England. At the time, Conan Doyle had given up his lucrative writing career, killing off Sherlock Holmes in the process, in order to concentrate on his increasingly manic interest in Spiritualism. Houdini, who regularly conducted seances in an attempt to reach his late mother, was also infatuated with the idea of what he called a "living afterlife," though his enthusiasm came to be tempered by his ability to expose fraudulent mediums, many of whom employed crude variations of his own well-known illusions. Using previously unpublished material on the murky relationship between Houdini and Conan Doyle, this sometimes macabre, sometimes comic tale tells the fascinating story of the relationship between two of the most loved figures of the 20th century and their pursuit of magic and lost loved ones.



About the Author
Christopher Sandford has published acclaimed biographies of Kurt Cobain, Steve McQueen, Eric Clapton, Mick Jagger, David Bowie, Paul McCartney, Keith Richards, Bruce Springsteen and Roman Polanski. He is also the author of "Masters of Mystery: The Strange Friendship of Arthur Conan Doyle and Harry Houdini. "He has worked as a film and music writer and reviewer for over 20 years, and frequently contributes to newspapers and magazines on both sides of the Atlantic. "Rolling Stone" has called him "the pre-eminent author in his field today." Sandford divides his time between Seattle and London.
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