Shelley Cooper from the September 7, 2015 issue
Tagline: Though Maggie no longer believed in magic, she'd fallen under Max Bennett's spell!
Observations: This will be a stream-of-consciousness critique which is where I type my thoughts as I read the story. I haven't done that in a while and I'm on a tight deadline this week, so here we go.
Magicians! Cool! I love magicians. I watched the TV movie Houdini with Adrian Brody and found it very interesting. But I digress.
Her dad performed at bar mitzvahs? I never got to see a magic show at any of the bar mitzvahs I've attended. That would have been fun.
Ooh, I'm jealous of Maggie having learned all those tricks. I used to know a couple of card tricks. They're fun, especially when you show them to kids. However, I am wondering if Maggie the little girl would really have been upset that they were tricking people. Maybe my sister and I were weird, but we loved baffling our friends.
Okay. Here's the scene:
"People want to believe in magic," my father told me once when I balked at performing.
"But we're tricking them!" I protested.
"No, Maggie, we're giving them hope. Magic--real magic--is in the eye of the beholder. You'll understand when you're older."
Hm. The hope line isn't flying with me. When I see a magic show, I'm not sitting in the audience hoping the trick will work or that magic exists. I feel this line is a bit contrived for something that I have yet to read in the story or is an attempt to get sentimental and evoke emotion. I'm going to read on and see.
Ah, we meet the hero. I like the description of him and I like how he's a magician in the booth at the school where the festival is going on.
LOL. I love how she's standing there, arms crossed, and knows how he does all the tricks because she knows from her days with her dad.
Okay, I got engrossed in the story for a bit because it got good. We meet foster kid, Sarah, and get back story on her. I care about Sarah and I suddenly admire Maggie a bit more. The kids' interaction is spot on. As a former elementary school teacher, I'm sensitive to kids being portrayed in a not so realistic manner, and the way Tommy yells is perfect. I adored finding out about the diaper in the bag!
The line about her heart soaring was a tiny bit too much for me.
Oh, wow, she reconciles with her dad? AWESOME. That tying up of a thread isn't something you see every day in a Woman's World story.