book cover of The Zig Zag Girl
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The Zig Zag Girl

(The first book in the Brighton Mysteries series)
A novel by

The chilling debut mystery in the Brighton Mysteries series from Edgar Allen Poe Award-winner Elly Griffiths—author of the Ruth Galloway Mysteries—about a band of magicians who served together in World War II tracking a killer who’s performing their deadly tricks.
Wall Street Journal

“An absorbing read, the debut of another great series.”—
San Jose Mercury News

“A labyrinthine plot, a splendid reveal, and superb evocation of the wafer-thin veneer of glamour at the bottom end of showbusiness . . . Thoroughly enjoyable.” —

Brighton, 1950. A girl is found cut into three sections, and 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, served with Edgar in a special ops group called the Magic Men that used stage illusions to confound the enemy. Max still performs, touring with ventriloquists, sword-swallowers, and dancing girls.

When Edgar asks for his help with the case, Max tells him to identify the victim, for it takes a special sidekick to do the Zig Zag Girl. Those words haunt Max when he learns the victim was a favorite former assistant of his own. And when Edgar receives a letter warning of another “trick” on the way, he realizes that it is the Magic Men themselves who are in the killer’s sights.

“Enormously engaging . . . Griffiths’s plot is satisfyingly serpentine.”
—Daily Mail

“Readers will finish looking forward to the next trick up [Griffiths’s] sleeve.”—
Mystery Scene

Genre: Mystery

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