Michael Kardos (Author)


The magician's job is to create a mystery--an unbridgeable gap between cause and effect. Michael Kardos brilliantly constructs his new novel Bluff as a magician would, delivering a perfectly calibrated performance of intrigue and, ultimately, astonishment.

At twenty-seven, magician Natalie Webb is already a has-been. A card-trick prodigy, she started touring at seventeen, took first place at the World of Magic competition at eighteen, and never reached such heights again. Shunned by the magic world after a disastrous liaison with an older magician, she now lives alone with her pigeons and a pile of overdue bills in a New Jersey apartment. In a desperate ploy to make extra cash, she follows up on an old offer to write a feature magazine article--on the art of cheating at cards. But when she meets the perfect subject for her article, what begins as a journalistic gamble brings into question everything Natalie thinks she knows about her talent, and herself. Natalie is dazzled by the poker cheat's sleight of hand and soon finds herself facing a proposition that could radically alter her fortune--to help pull off a $1.5 million magic trick that, if done successfully, no one will ever even suspect happened. With Kardos raising the stakes chapter after chapter, Bluff is a breathtaking work of suspense from a writer at the top of his game.

Product Details

$26.00  $23.92
Mysterious Press
Publish Date
April 03, 2018
6.0 X 1.2 X 9.0 inches | 1.15 pounds
BISAC Categories:

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About the Author

Michael Kardos is the Pushcart Prize-winning author of the novels The Three-Day Affair and Before He Finds Her and the story collection One Last Good Time. Originally from the Jersey Shore, he lives in Starkville, Mississippi, where he codirects the creative writing program at Mississippi State University.


Praise for Bluff

"As lithe and cunning as its characters, Michael Kardos's Bluff is a masterly exercise in narrative sleight of hand. This is suspense in its purest form--character-driven, immersive and hopelessly addictive. Prepare to be taken."--Megan Abbott, Edgar Award-winning author of You Will Know Me

"Michael Kardos is a master at ratcheting up the suspense, and Bluff combines poker, a brilliant con game, and two terrific women who run the show. If you haven't read Kardos yet, Bluff is the perfect place to start!"--Lisa Scottoline, bestselling author of Exposed

"Terrific writing, great characters, an insider's knowledge, and a killer plot with a leg-breaker of a twist. What are you waiting for? Buy this book."--Peter Blauner, author of Proving Ground and Slow Motion Riot

"Natalie is a sharp-witted survivor with a relatable self-sabotaging streak whose move into the dark world of card cheats climaxes with a spin worthy of the most adept con artists."--Booklist

"So exciting and thrilling--I loved this from the first line! Female card-sharp with a mysterious past gets drawn into life-changing heist. Smart and fun."--Mary Cotton, Newtonville Books, Newton, MA

"Engaging and interesting, with enough lore about magicians and gambling to give the story veracity without weighing it down."--Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine