The Witch of Lime Street ~ Séance, Seduction and Houdini in the Spirit World by David Jaher
The Witch of Lime Street ~ Séance, Seduction and Houdini in the Spirit World by David Jaher is an intriguing historical journey into the 1920's. Curiosity was building into all things spiritual and magic as it was post World War I. People were searching for something bigger; something to make meaning out of our lives. It seems it started with Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, none other than the author of the Sherlock Holmes books. He was searching, like most, for answers. What happened to the fallen men after the war?
Plenty of frauds existed, just as it is today and has always been and believe it or not, Houdini was all a part of this. He was a masterful genius who could see beyond the tricks of mediums and self-proclaimed phsyics. He would even call them out during their own shows and prove them wrong, humiliating them in front of their crowds. He disproved many mediums as frauds and even as he became known as one to blow their cover, they would go undercover when he was known to be coming to town.
What intrigued me the most about Houdini was his smarts. He came from a poor family and who knew his father was a Rabbi? They actually lived in Appleton, WI, which is where I was born. He married Bess Rahner and they became a magic team is you will. As most know, he became the master of shackles and binds, even undoing bonds under water and doing the most death defying stunts to the amazement of the world. He studied his art like a true master and that is what made him who he was.
This book review would be unfair to not mention Mina "Margery" Crandon who is a giant part of this collection of facts, as this book is non-fiction. Mrs. Crandon was from Boston and was Houdini's rival. A prize was offered to anyone who could be proven to be a true medium. She took on this test and was proven wrong time and again by the great Houdini and the other judges. He seemed to make it his business to make people aware of the fraud around them though they were so eager to hear from dead loved ones or just know more about the "other" side.
The book is quite long, at 412 pages long but it is quite interesting especially if you are in love with history, sprititualism and Houdini. I am happy to have this on my book shelf and will definitely read it again. I learned quite a bit from it. The author, David Jaher, does an amazing job presenting the facts to the reader.
*I received this book from Blogging For Books to read and review. All opinions are 100% my own.