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Download The Confabulist: A Novel Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Confabulist: A Novel, by Steven Galloway Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Steven Galloway Narrator: Jason Culp Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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From the author of The Cellist of Sarajevo comes an exciting new novel that uses the life and sudden death of Harry Houdini to weave a tale of magic, intrigue, and illusion.

What is real and what is an illusion? Can you trust your memory to provide an accurate record of what has happened in your life?

The Confabulist is a clever, entertaining, and suspenseful narrative that weaves together the rise and fall of world-famous Harry Houdini with the surprising story of Martin Strauss, an unknown man whose fate seems forever tied to the magician’s in a way that will ultimately startle and amaze. It is at once a vivid portrait of an alluring, late-nineteenth/early-twentieth-century world; a front-row seat to a world-class magic show; and an unexpected love story. In the end, the book is a kind of magic trick in itself: there is much more to Martin than meets the eye.

Historically rich and ingeniously told, this is a novel about magic and memory, truth and illusion, and the ways that love, hope, grief, and imagination can—for better or for worse—alter what we perceive and believe.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “As finely crafted as the most intricate magic trick, right to the revelatory conclusion. Whether or not it’s the ending you anticipate, you’re likely to think, after any clever illusion, ‘Amazing. How did he do that?’”

    Toronto Star

  • “Memory is a cagey friend: what we see is subjective, colored by what we want to believe. Such tension between wish and reality is employed to stunning effect in Steven Galloway’s new novel, The Confabulist. Intertwining the lives of the famous Houdini and a misfit named Martin Strauss, Galloway’s story has a big trick up its sleeve, but his talent is no illusion.”


  • “Like a good magic trick, The Confabulist is so cleverly constructed that Galloway leaves you wondering: how did he do it?…A beautifully wrought novel about the grip of illusion and the way we tell ourselves stories to seek redemption, or forgiveness at the very least.”

    Washington Post

  • “Fascinating…A brilliant novel, and one that virtually demands multiple readings.”

    Booklist (starred review)

  • “Thrilling, sly, and filled with dramatic moments…The subject matter feels very much of its time. Houdini’s story though—in Galloway’s clever hands—feels almost timeless.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “In this engaging novel, based loosely on the life of Harry Houdini, Canadian author Galloway challenges readers to distinguish between illusion and reality through the metaphor of magic…Like a magician, Galloway embeds enough curveballs and red herrings in his narrative to keep readers on unsteady footing throughout, as they circle back to reread a chapter, trying to decipher what is real and what is illusion. This blending of fact and fiction is reminiscent of work by E. L. Doctorow or Colum McCann, ensuring interest for both history and mystery buffs.”

    Library Journal

  • “Darkly fanciful…His explorations of the relationships between truth and illusion, fiction and reality, need and conscience are stimulating and affecting.”

    Kirkus Reviews

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