Download The Zig Zag Girl Audiobook

The Zig Zag Girl Audiobook, by Elly Griffiths Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Elly Griffiths Narrator: James Langton Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Series: The Magic Men Mysteries Release Date: September 2015 ISBN: 9781504640237
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In the first installment of a compelling new series by Elly Griffiths, a band of magicians who served together in World War II track a killer who’s performing their deadly tricks.

Brighton, 1950. The body of a girl is found cut into three pieces. Detective Inspector Edgar Stephens is convinced the killer is mimicking a famous magic trick—the Zig Zag Girl. The inventor of the trick, Max Mephisto, is an old war friend of Edgar’s. They served together in a shadowy unit called the Magic Men, a special ops troop that used stage tricks to confound the enemy.

Max is on the traveling show circuit, touring seaside towns with ventriloquists, sword-swallowers, and dancing girls. He’s reluctant to leave this world to help Edgar investigate but advises him to identify the victim quickly—it takes a special sidekick to do the Zig Zag Girl. Those words come back to haunt Max when the dead girl turns out to be Ethel, one of his best assistants to date. He’s soon at Edgar’s side, hunting for Ethel’s killer.

Another death, another magic trick: Edgar and Max are sure the answer to the murders lies in their army days. And when Edgar receives a letter warning of another “trick” on the way—the Wolf Trap—he knows they’re all in the killer’s sights.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Captivating…The Zig Zag Girl is old-fashioned in the best ways.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “Some killers get inspiration from the police blotter; others copy … magicians? A troupe of magicians who served in WWII (using trickery to blindside the enemy) must figure out who is performing these fatal imitations—and why.”

    Entertainment Weekly

  • “Enormously engaging…Postwar Brighton and its Theatre Royal are beautifully captured in all their seedy glory…Subtle, charming, and very good.”

    Daily Mail (London)

  • “With a labyrinthine plot, a splendid reveal, and superb evocation of the wafer-thin veneer of glamour at the bottom end of show business, this is thoroughly enjoyable.”


  • “[A] captivating reimagining.”


  • “The portrayal of the backstage life and the onstage performances of illusionists forms a fascinating backdrop to the main action. Brief flashbacks to the Magic Men’s wartime missions provide an equally gripping backstory. As the plot deepens, Griffiths’ tone darkens, leading to a series of surprise twists. Readers will look forward to seeing a lot more of Max and company.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “Griffiths’ ability to imbue atmosphere and create fascinating characters continues to make her an author every mystery lover should be reading.”

    Library Journal

  • “The setting of the shabby, postwar beach town during the 1950s adds a rich dimension to the novel, both in terms of atmosphere and in giving the story a classic mystery feel—crime in a pre-electronic age, before cell phones and DNA, when crimes were solved by face-to-face investigation and inspired deduction. An original plot and appealingly quirky characters round out the appeal of this thoroughly entertaining tale.”


  • “Griffiths weaves a compelling tale rich with historical detail and a cast of eccentric characters.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • An Amazon Best Book of the Month in Mystery, Thriller, and Suspense
  • A BookPage Top Pick for September 2015
  • A BookPage Book of the Day
  • An Entertainment Weekly “Must Read” for 10 Great Fall Thrillers

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About the Author

Elly Griffiths, winner of the 2011 Mary Higgins Clark Award and the 2016 CWA Dagger in the Library Award, is the author of two mystery series, one taking place in Norfolk and the other in Brighton. Her 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 filled her head with the myths and legends of that area. The second series takes place in the fifties and features Detective Inspector Edgar Stephens and illusionist Max Mephisto.

About the Narrator

James Langton, an Earphones Award–winning narrator, trained as an actor at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama and later as a musician at the Guildhall School in London. He has worked in radio, film, and television, also appearing in theater in England and on Broadway. He is also a professional musician who led the internationally renowned Pasadena Roof Orchestra from 1996 to 2002.