The Secret of Magic
by Deborah Johnson
Hardcover- N/A

In 1946, a young female attorney from New York City attempts the impossible: attaining justice for a black man in the Deep South.
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  "THE SECRET OF MAGIC by Deborah Johnson" by [email protected] (see profile) 02/22/14

This is a wonderful book! The book jacket does not do it justice. I almost didn’t buy it. Then I started reading and couldn’t put it down. The writing reminds me of THE HELP or TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD or IN COLD BLOOD or even MIDNIGHT IN THE GARDEN OF GOOD AND EVIL – all great books.
A black war hero is returning home to Mississippi after WWII when he is beaten to death and dumped in the river. The story concerns the hero’s father and the two women – one white, one black – who want to see justice served in a segregated Jim Crow South. The characters in this book are real people (fictional) who are shown in both their goodness and their fear, their needs and their disappointments, their triumphs and their failures. The town of Revere, Mississippi, is as much a character as the people who populate the town - the District Attorney, the sheriff, the white lawyer and the black lawyer, the erstwhile lover and his wife and son, the maybe murderess and the ever present sense of fear and “place.”
The story is riveting. You will not be disappointed. Book groups will find a wealth of topics to discuss.
5 of 5 stars

 
  "" by vstevens (see profile) 04/30/14

 
  "The Secret of Magic" by Silversolara (see profile) 01/13/15


A year-old murder, a book paralleling events and characters, and the South in the 1940's after WWII.

The charm of the South as well as its deep-seated prejudices comes forth in THE SECRET OF MAGIC as Regina Robichard travels from New York City to Revere, Mississippi, to investigate the murder of a young black man just returning from the war.

Regina hits brick walls right from the start even though she was invited by M. P. Calhoun, a powerful woman and author of a book also titled The Secret of Magic, to investigate the murder.

THE SECRET OF MAGIC has characters that are authentic and very likeable...well most of them are likeable. Some of them are down right mean and hateful. You will LOVE Willie, Willie because of his strength and determination.

THE SECRET OF MAGIC was a bit slow at first, but once Regina got to Mississippi and started her investigation, the interest picked up as we follow her through her investigation. You will become part of her activities and part of the laws of Post-WWII South.

You will become part of finding out the ways of and the secrets of the South, the secrets of how the town of Revere, Mississippi, is run, and the secrets of powerful Southern families. They will be secrets that aren’t pleasant.

You will melt into the pages and the comfort of Southern living, but you will also need to be prepared to shed some tears and feel fear for some of the characters.

THE SECRET OF MAGIC has beautiful, descriptive writing that pulls you in and keeps you turning the pages. Ms. Johnson is a master with words.

If you like Southern fiction, you won’t want to miss THE SECRET OF MAGIC. It is a marvelous read. 4/5

 
  "Slow as molasses ..." by rkarpinecz (see profile) 01/20/15

Slow as molasses easily describes the first 100 pages of The Secret of Magic. Finally, it picks up at midpoint and moves quickly to it's conclusion. A group member suggested the slow pace at the front may be deliberate in order to echo the pace of change in the South following WWII.

 
  "The Secret of Magic" by [email protected] (see profile) 05/09/16

Being a Northerner, I learned a lot about Southern behavioral nuance, love of storytelling by many Southerners, complexity of the racial inequality pre and post WWII, and how far we've come...or not. Delightful and difficult read to put down from page one.

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