The Prestige

BSFA Award, 1996

ebook / ISBN-13: 9780575114968

Price: £9.99

ON SALE: 14th July 2011

Genre: Fiction & Related Items

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Two 19th century stage illusionists, the aristocratic Rupert Angier and the working-class Alfred Borden, engage in a bitter and deadly feud; the effects are still being felt by their respective families a hundred years later.

Working in the gaslight-and-velvet world of Victorian music halls, they prowl edgily in the background of each other’s shadowy life, driven to the extremes by a deadly combination of obsessive secrecy and insatiable curiosity.

At the heart of the row is an amazing illusion they both perform during their stage acts. The secret of the magic is simple, and the reader is in on it almost from the start, but to the antagonists the real mystery lies deeper. Both have something more to hide than the mere workings of a trick.

******

‘Really amazing. I love the epistolary nature of the novel and how the story stretches through time, but my favourite bits were all between the two warring illusionists. I can’t believe how far the two of them went to prolong their feud of pranks. It was great seeing two professionals unwilling to harm their craft still work around all the little niceties to get at one another.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Duelling illusionists’ ongoing battle in the late Victorian era has consequences for future generations. This is a masterpiece of epistolary style writing. The reader is set up, mirroring the art of the illusionist. The Prestige explores issues relating to social class and gender, artistry vs science, one’s perspective shaping the truth, and the dangers of limitless ambition. The illusionists’ duel and their quest to be true masters provides for a couple of intriguing Faustian bargains in this truly marvelous novel. Yet we, as readers, are also being deceived until it all finally unravels. One of the best novels in a structural sense that I’ve read. Well worth the time.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Gripping, eerie, hard to put down. Every time I thought I had a good sense of what was going on, Priest pulled the rug out of from under his plot and I’m still not sure what actually happened. Demands a re-read.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

‘A suspenseful and gripping story, Christopher Priest demonstrates his storytelling skill in this compelling tale of two turn-of-the-century competing British stage magicians and their feud that trickles down through their descendants.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

‘The setting is in present day, with descendants of two famous magicians trying to figure out what happened to their great-grandfathers. They do this by reading the journals/books of their forefathers. What they find out will really amaze you. This book will keep you guessing, and once the guessing stops, things get really weird. But it’s a good kind of weird.’ Goodreads reviewer, ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

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