The Illusion

Patrick Garry
Kenric Books (2016)
ISBN 9780983370352
Reviewed by Sheri Hoyte for Reader Views (10/16)

In “The Illusion” by Patrick Garry, we follow Luke Sellmer, a man on his way up in the world, in all areas of his life. A savvy investment banker with an impressive reputation, he is soon introduced to the world of the wealthy, acquiring elite clientele through his future father-in-law. His bride-to-be, Lauren, is fashionable, and well connected, the perfect partner. Luke has come a long way from the paltry existence of his upbringing and there’s no turning back now. Or is there? As is often true, not everything is as it appears, and Luke carries within him a number of secrets. Unwitting circumstances expose Luke to betrayal, murder, and social scandal, any one of which could bring his carefully crafted world crashing down.

I enjoyed reading “The Illusion,” an entertaining and fast-paced mystery/thriller. The characters really drove the story home for me. Fully developed and realistic, I found them all to have distinct characteristics and formed a bond with each one, whether I liked them or not. I actually flip-flopped in my opinions of the main characters as the story developed and the characters evolved. I felt sorry for Luke during his childhood, cheered his rebellion against his family, admired his determination for a better life, was outraged by some of his character defects and exasperated by some of the choices he made throughout his life. And that was just Luke’s character! Character development is definitely the strong suit in this drama.

The manner in which the story unfolded was a bit irregular, and the chapter titles threw me off, as they didn’t seem to have a consistent theme. For instance, the first chapter is titled Thursday, Courthouse Waiting Room, while the second chapter is simply titled, Vince Gullin. But hey, I figure there is a reason for everything, and as I read, I could see the intention in presenting the story in this manner. I quickly fell into a rhythm and found the unique style to be insightful and creative.

"The Illusion" by Patrick Garry is sure to draw fans of multiple genres. The excitement, high-society dysfunction, obsessive stalker-type relationship drama, murder, and intrigue will keep readers engrossed to the very end.

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