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Extended Audio Sample The Magicians Assistant, by Ann Patchett Click for printable size audiobook cover
3.8 out of 53.8 out of 53.8 out of 53.8 out of 53.8 out of 5 3.80 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Ann Patchett Narrator: Karen Ziemba Publisher: HarperCollins Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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When Parsifal, a handsome and charming magician, dies suddenly, his widow Sabine—who was also his faithful assistant for twenty years—learns that the family he claimed to have lost in a tragic accident is very much alive and well. Sabine is left to unravel his secrets, and the adventure she embarks upon, from sunny Los Angeles to the bitter windswept plains of Nebraska, will work its own magic on her. Sabine's extraordinary tale captures the hearts of its readers just as Sabine is captured by her quest.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Ann Patchett is an elegant and lyrical writer.”

    USA Today

  • “Patchett's ability to evoke sense of place…is near magical in itself.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “We read Patchett's novel with the same pleasure and awe of an audience watching a chained Houdini escape from an underwater chamber.”                     


  • “Enchanting.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “This beautifully realized tale suggests that even a woman skilled in the art of magic cannot fool herself.”


  • “A saga of redemption tenderly and terrifically told.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • A USA Today Bestseller
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • Nominated for the 1998 Orange Prize for Fiction

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Deb | 2/20/2014

    " An engaging story, beautifully written. I felt the ending just sort of slipped away, though. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Elizabeth | 2/15/2014

    " I loved this book beyond all reason. Bel Canto is probably a better novel, but something about this one resonated with me. The premise is inherently overwrought: the widow (and assistant) of a magician discovers her husband's supposedly dead family is very much alive. Sabine must both grieve the husband she knew and discover the one that she didn't. To Patchett's credit, this book is a remarkably subtle character study; the magical elements seem almost commonplace compared to the compelling relationships between Sabine and her new family. I didn't want this book to end. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Gerrigray | 2/15/2014

    " Sometimes you don't know your partner or your self so well until after your partner dies. Their happy relationship becomes even richer after death. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Samantha | 1/31/2014

    " Beautifully written, with a subtlety that I did not expect and therefore kept me quietly hooked. "

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