By Kristina McMorris
A Remarkable Tale of Intrigue and Illusion
Fenna Vos’s mother died in childbirth, but Fenna is a survivor. She learned how to survive at an early age of ten when she was caught in a stampede. When her best friend, Arie Jansen gave her a book of magic tricks, her life was changed forever. She consumed the book and taught herself how to do all the illusions, escapes and magic tricks it contained. She keenly watched other magicians in films and theaters whenever she could and learned even more by studying and deconstructing their acts.
In 1942, Fenna, now 23, is performing a fairly successful magic show two times a day. Although she is the mastermind of the show, she partners with Charles Bouchard and they are currently performing in a Brooklyn, NY medium size theater. On her way home late one rainy night, Fenna is approached by an older gentleman with the British military. Christopher Clayton Hutton believes Fenna has “unique and innovative skills that should be used for a grander purpose than amusement on a stage.” He wants her to design secret and hidden escape aids to help the Allies thwart the Germans in WWII. Reluctantly, Fenna moves to London to use her skills to assist with the war effort. When drawn deep into a secret mission, she soon learns the true meaning of loyalty and courage.
THE WAYS WE HIDE is a remarkable tale of intrigue and illusion inspired by several actual events. Author Kristina McMorris’s writing is as spellbinding as Fenna’s copy of Houdini’s Book of Magic Tricks. The story is poignantly told from Fenna’s point of view and is smartly structured with shifts between the traumatic events of her youth and the current day
Fenna experiences many gut-wrenching events and you can’t help but be amazed at her courage both as a child and an adult in overcoming the obstacles put in her way. The unique childhood friendship that she had with Arie plays a delightful and considerable role in Fenna’s life. Fenna’s character was superbly written. Her strengths, weaknesses and needs, and fears were all evident, making her come alive on the page.
Thanks to Netgalley for an advance reading copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Publisher Sourcebooks Landmark
Published September 6, 2022