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The Disappearing Act

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A woman has gone missing But did she ever really exist? Mia Eliot has travelled from London to LA for pilot season. This is her big chance to make it as an actor in Hollywood, and she is ready to do whatever it takes. At an audition she meets Emily, and what starts as a simple favour takes a dark turn when Emily goes missing and Mia is the last person to see her. Then a wom A woman has gone missing But did she ever really exist? Mia Eliot has travelled from London to LA for pilot season. This is her big chance to make it as an actor in Hollywood, and she is ready to do whatever it takes. At an audition she meets Emily, and what starts as a simple favour takes a dark turn when Emily goes missing and Mia is the last person to see her. Then a woman turns up, claiming to be Emily, but she is nothing like Mia remembers. Why would someone pretend to be Emily? Starting to question her own sanity, she goes on a desperate and dangerous search for answers, knowing something is very, very wrong. In an industry where everything is about creating illusions, how do you know what is real? And how much would you risk to find out?


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A woman has gone missing But did she ever really exist? Mia Eliot has travelled from London to LA for pilot season. This is her big chance to make it as an actor in Hollywood, and she is ready to do whatever it takes. At an audition she meets Emily, and what starts as a simple favour takes a dark turn when Emily goes missing and Mia is the last person to see her. Then a wom A woman has gone missing But did she ever really exist? Mia Eliot has travelled from London to LA for pilot season. This is her big chance to make it as an actor in Hollywood, and she is ready to do whatever it takes. At an audition she meets Emily, and what starts as a simple favour takes a dark turn when Emily goes missing and Mia is the last person to see her. Then a woman turns up, claiming to be Emily, but she is nothing like Mia remembers. Why would someone pretend to be Emily? Starting to question her own sanity, she goes on a desperate and dangerous search for answers, knowing something is very, very wrong. In an industry where everything is about creating illusions, how do you know what is real? And how much would you risk to find out?

30 review for The Disappearing Act

  1. 4 out of 5

    Nilufer Ozmekik

    Happy book birthday to this twisty, sucker punching, riveting Hollywood drama!🥳🎉🎈 3.5 heart pounding, action packed, quick pacing, one sit, mysterious, intriguing Hollywood drama with #metoo movement vibes! It’s quite shocking, blood freezing, intense story about how far actors could go to climb at the career ladders, how vicious, bloodthirsty they can be to take their share from the illusionary La La land experience! The book is dragging you into action packed, mind numbing mystery with its fas Happy book birthday to this twisty, sucker punching, riveting Hollywood drama!🥳🎉🎈 3.5 heart pounding, action packed, quick pacing, one sit, mysterious, intriguing Hollywood drama with #metoo movement vibes! It’s quite shocking, blood freezing, intense story about how far actors could go to climb at the career ladders, how vicious, bloodthirsty they can be to take their share from the illusionary La La land experience! The book is dragging you into action packed, mind numbing mystery with its fast and riveting pace, making you question where the hell Emily go? You make speculations till the end and even though the revelations seem a little far fetched and too illogical, as a small pawn of this notorious industry I keep telling myself: well, why not! I’ve seen worse things people can do to reach their goals! I think I have to talk more about the plot not to leave in the dark: Mia Elliot is our successful British actress, who is about to be nominated at BAFTA for her leading actress performance at Jane Eyre. As soon as she learns the possible nomination from her agent, she also learns another heart wrenching truth: her six years long boyfriend George she’s living with is chosen to play as Holden Caulfield at the adaptation of Catcher in Rye and he is also having insta-worthy fling with 20 years old young actress who will share the leading roles with him! Bang! As if all those things he’s done is not enough, he also sends a moving company to gather his belongings and dumbs her with four worded text! I know what you’re thinking : real sun of beach right? ( I changed some words as a precaution: just in case your kids want to read my review instead of glued their faces on YouTube videos :) ) Heartbroken Mia chants Gloria Gaynor’s I will survive and packs her bag to catch pilot season in LA! She attends the auditions back to back including her dream project Galatea. She feels like a lamb in the jungle crowded by wolves, learning more about how the wheels of stinking industry works differently. The phony smiles, merciless rivalries, powerful manipulation games played by big boys who can be easily expendable in the long term! Yes, I liked the realistic approach of the author a lot! Mia meets with Emily at one of the auditions who wants her help to feed her park meter. She gives her phone and wallet just in case. It can be so easy to get traffic ticket cost you around $90 when you forget to feed your park meter and get caught by those parking enforcement officers ( been there done that) so I got her reason completely. And Mia was already too confused because of sob ex who just ghosted her, wanting to show British politeness by offering her help. But when she gets back, she realizes Emily is nowhere to be seen. She tries to leave her belongings but the receptionist rejects to hold them. Now she’s with the key of rental car and wallet of a stranger, still attending auditions, checking for phone to hear from her. Then she finally reaches to Emily who wants to stop by at her apartment to pick her belongings but this is the part what things get crazier. A woman stops by Emily’s apartment to pick Emily’s belongings, acting like her but she has no clue what Mia and Emily talked that day ( how can she? She’s another person! ) Mia lets her leave with Emily’s belongings. ( yeap, this is the second move which made me question the nativity level of Mia again) But later she calls the police and she starts conducting her own investigation, getting herself into serious danger but once she starts to dig, she cannot stop! Big revelation has still far fetched and there are still ugly big holes, some unrealistic explanations about extra resources and abilities of culprit but I still liked the nerve bending ending. It was griping, exciting one sit reading with realistic, well researched approach to the city of Lucifer. The mystery parts are a little exaggerated and the heroine was so clueless at some parts of the story but I’m still rounding up 3.5 stars to 4 surprising, captivating, whirlwind stars! At least I enjoyed this one more than Mr. Nobody! Special thanks to NetGalley and Random House Publishing Group/ Ballantine for sharing this digital reviewer copy with me in exchange my honest thoughts.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Tina

    This is a Psychological Thriller. I have to say this book pulled me into for the beginning, and I loved the character, Mia. I will have to add that this is more of a mystery to me then a thriller. I did not find this way thrilling or shocking, but there was suspense. I did love the story and the characters. I did not want to put this book down. The ending was just ok. I think any book that pulls you into it and keeps you wanting to read is worth reading. I am normally not one for books about act This is a Psychological Thriller. I have to say this book pulled me into for the beginning, and I loved the character, Mia. I will have to add that this is more of a mystery to me then a thriller. I did not find this way thrilling or shocking, but there was suspense. I did love the story and the characters. I did not want to put this book down. The ending was just ok. I think any book that pulls you into it and keeps you wanting to read is worth reading. I am normally not one for books about actress/actors, but I really enjoyed this story. I was kindly provided an e-copy of this book by the publisher (Ballantine Books) or author (Catherine Steadman) via NetGalley, so I can give honest review about how I feel about this book. I want to send a big Thank you to them for that.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Michael David

    Mia Eliot is a British actress, famous in her home country for starring in an adaptation of Jane Eyre. She’s always wanted to make it in Hollywood. During pilot season, her agent fixes her up with a 3-week trip across the pond for some very promising auditions. At one of the auditions, she meets Emily, another out-of-towner actress, and they immediately bond. However, after Mia does an odd favor for Emily, Emily disappears. Perplexed, Mia doesn’t quite know what to do...until Emily shows up at he Mia Eliot is a British actress, famous in her home country for starring in an adaptation of Jane Eyre. She’s always wanted to make it in Hollywood. During pilot season, her agent fixes her up with a 3-week trip across the pond for some very promising auditions. At one of the auditions, she meets Emily, another out-of-towner actress, and they immediately bond. However, after Mia does an odd favor for Emily, Emily disappears. Perplexed, Mia doesn’t quite know what to do...until Emily shows up at her rented condo the next night. The only thing is, this woman isn’t Emily. She’s only pretending to be her. Something sinister is obviously going on, and Mia can’t help but get herself involved. She may not realize how dangerous the situation is until it’s too late. DUN DUN DUN. This one didn’t quite reach my expectations, but I still enjoyed it overall. PROS: -The writing is superb. Author Catherine Steadman, also an actress, does a great job fleshing out characters and locations. It was interesting to get a behind scenes look at Hollywood and the audition process. -It’s a quick read that kept me mostly entertained throughout. I was never bored, and enjoyed every chance I got to pick it back up. -I was surprised by the direction it went in. I thought I had it figured out, and it would’ve been horrible if it went in the direction I suspected, but it didn’t. PHEW! -I really enjoyed Mia. She’s such a sweet character, and I couldn’t help but want her to succeed. CONS: -While I really liked Mia, she was also WAY too naive. It wasn’t realistic to me that someone would get themselves so deep into this mess the way she did. -The story is pretty implausible overall, and a bit OTT. Sometimes that works for me. This time, it was a bit of a letdown. -The ending, while ultimately satisfying, dragged on quite a bit. I started to lose a bit of interest. While I didn’t love this one like I was expecting, I did LIKE it for the most part. However, I couldn’t help but think of an appropriate alternative title: The Slightly Disappointing Act. 3.5 stars Thank you to Ballantine Books and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review. This book will be published on: 6/8/21. Review also posted at: https://bonkersforthebooks.wordpress.com

  4. 4 out of 5

    Lisa of Troy

    Mia is a British starlet who is coming to LA for some film jobs. While at an audition, Mia meets another woman auditioning for a part. As the woman enters the audition, she hands Mia her wallet and keys to feed her parking meter. But the woman never returns. Several days later, a woman appears but isn't the same person that Mia remembers meeting before. But how well do you really remember someone that you met for only a few minutes? What is going on? The first 50% of the book was very slow, and t Mia is a British starlet who is coming to LA for some film jobs. While at an audition, Mia meets another woman auditioning for a part. As the woman enters the audition, she hands Mia her wallet and keys to feed her parking meter. But the woman never returns. Several days later, a woman appears but isn't the same person that Mia remembers meeting before. But how well do you really remember someone that you met for only a few minutes? What is going on? The first 50% of the book was very slow, and then I enjoyed the next 20% and the rest was only so-so. The book discusses some interesting tidbits of the acting profession (and some of the perks)! However, there was a character who didn't really seem to move the plot along, and the characters didn't really seem to have any depth to them, very one dimensional. I also just hate it when the main characters in mysteries just assumes weird stuff is normal and glosses over it. Some of the events didn't feel very realistic, and I really hated the portrayal of female friendships (some of the ladies being far more concerned about themselves than what happened to their friend/fellow female). But perhaps I am on the only person left in the world that cares about others? Additionally, this book didn't have any steam and felt very PG. Some of the weird things in this book: Mia drives her car around in The States. I find this very hard to believe. As an American who has been to London, I would NEVER drive in London. Why wouldn't she just take an Uber? When Mia meets an alleged American guy, He says that he will "pop out." Sorry but Americans don't typically say pop in and pop out. That is totally a British saying. There were other things that didn't make sense but I won't go into them because they would be very spoilery. Overall, this book bored me, and I felt it was a chore to read except for about 20% in the middle which was unexpected. Then, it went back into slow mode. *Thank you, NetGalley, for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for my fair and honest opinion.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Liz

    Well, here’s a weird little coincidence. Two stories in the past week which have included the story about the 1920s actress that did a head dive off the Hollywood sign. Anyway… The Disappearing Act follows actress Mia Elliot when she leaves London for LA. She’s just starred in a remake of Jane Eyre, about to be nominated for a BAFTA, but her personal life is in shambles and it seems like a good time to vamoose. Plus, her agent has all these upcoming shows to audition for. At one audition, she hel Well, here’s a weird little coincidence. Two stories in the past week which have included the story about the 1920s actress that did a head dive off the Hollywood sign. Anyway… The Disappearing Act follows actress Mia Elliot when she leaves London for LA. She’s just starred in a remake of Jane Eyre, about to be nominated for a BAFTA, but her personal life is in shambles and it seems like a good time to vamoose. Plus, her agent has all these upcoming shows to audition for. At one audition, she helps out a fellow actress and ends up with her belongings. When the gal comes to collect her stuff, it’s not the same woman. Catherine Steadman is an actress and it shows. I felt like I got a real taste of casting calls, screen tests and all the hoopla that goes into being cast for a role. She also put together what seemed to be a pretty accurate portrayal of Hollywood. But I just couldn’t believe the premise of the story. Ok, yes I could believe that Mia tried to help Emily. But I couldn’t believe that she wouldn’t let it go. And then it takes a turn towards the unbelievable, because Mia is just so bloody gullible and naive. The book goes on for a while with minimum tension or real suspense. It picks up at the end, but the entire time, I was shaking my head. Credit where credit is due, I had no clue who the villain in the piece was or how it would play out. This is decent entertainment and doesn’t really tax the brain. My thanks to NetGalley and Random House - Ballantine for an advance copy of this book.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Christina

    Take one part Nancy Drew and one part La La Land and stir in half a cup of The Black Dahlia and a tablespoon of The Player. Add a dash of Gone Girl, and bake until it all catches fire at the end. Now you have the recipe for this dishy Hollywood thriller, which I could not put down. The first cool thing about this book was that I learned that the author, Catherine Steadman, is also a well-known British actress. What? Why didn’t anyone tell me this when I was listening to the great Something in the Take one part Nancy Drew and one part La La Land and stir in half a cup of The Black Dahlia and a tablespoon of The Player. Add a dash of Gone Girl, and bake until it all catches fire at the end. Now you have the recipe for this dishy Hollywood thriller, which I could not put down. The first cool thing about this book was that I learned that the author, Catherine Steadman, is also a well-known British actress. What? Why didn’t anyone tell me this when I was listening to the great Something in the Water audiobook and marveling at how good the author was at reading it? Anyway, as a fan of Hollywood gossip and a girl who did a little acting in her day, it’s like this mystery was written just for me — and I bet a lot of other Hollywood dreamers. If you like show biz and Hollywood tales, both old and new, you’ll definitely love this clever thriller about a young ingenue who goes missing, and the more experienced English actress on the brink of her first huge break in LA who gets pulled into the mystery of her rival’s disappearance. Steadman obviously knows the ins and outs of acting from personal experience, and everything about the show business aspect of this book rings true. There are some great old Hollywood touches coupled with important modern-day themes, and a great little mystery that will remind you both of film noir and Nancy Drew. (Again, if you ask me? An ideal and quirky combination.) The one caveat I’ll add is that if you’re looking for a darker, nastier mystery (which I also do SO love) or something more like Something in the Water, you should be aware that this isn’t quite that same book. Don’t get me wrong, it’s plenty twisted, but more in the sense of a Hollywood story than a serial killer style thriller. I just love the way Steadman writes and I thoroughly enjoyed this unputdownable treasure trove of gossip, sleuthing, leading ladies, and Hollywood heartbreak. Doesn’t hurt that it also prominently features some of the best places for Hollywood fans to hang out in LA, like the Sunset Tower hotel and the 101 Coffee Shop. 4.5 stars! Fun, fun, fun from beginning to the fabulous denouement. Oh, and an aside to Ms. Steadman - who explains herein Chekhov’s famous “loaded gun” movie-making theory (if you show a loaded gun in the first act, make sure it goes off in Act Three) - I see what you did here, you clever author. Big thanks to the author, RandomHouse and NetGalley for this great read - my only minor regret is that I didn’t get to hear it read in Steadman’s voice, because I have a feeling this audiobook is also going to be fantastic.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Ceecee

    Title is The Disappearing Act! Mia Eliot has a BAFTA nomination in the offing for her role in ‘Eyre’, her career is on the up but her private world suffers a blow when her partner dumps her with a brief text. What would Jane do, Mia asked herself? She decides to move on and when her agent Cynthia gets her some auditions in Hollywood she goes without a backward glance. She’s schmoozed and seduced by a Hollywood charm offensive, some auditions go really well and during one she does a favour for fe Title is The Disappearing Act! Mia Eliot has a BAFTA nomination in the offing for her role in ‘Eyre’, her career is on the up but her private world suffers a blow when her partner dumps her with a brief text. What would Jane do, Mia asked herself? She decides to move on and when her agent Cynthia gets her some auditions in Hollywood she goes without a backward glance. She’s schmoozed and seduced by a Hollywood charm offensive, some auditions go really well and during one she does a favour for fellow actor Emily who then does a disappearing act dragging Mia into a murky and dangerous world. This is a well written novel with a good blend of mystery combined with some insights into the movie process. The setting is good and you get a warts and all spotlight into the less than salubrious aspects of the industry. The main character of Mia is good, she’s likeable, intelligent and reflective although despite her obvious cleverness some of her decisions are very questionable and you want to shout ‘Nooooo’ at the top of your voice! However, it is born out of a desire to do the right thing. I enjoy her assessment too of what the atmosphere in Hollywood might do to a person or lead them to do. The storyline is mostly well paced but it does drop off from time to time, there are some good twists, there’s tension and suspense and a real air of an intriguing mystery for the most part which makes you read on eagerly. I like the literary illusions the author cleverly uses such as Jane Eyre and Chekhov and there are some good movie references too. Towards the end there’s one scene that is very exciting and extremely tense and my first thought on reading it is what a great movie it will make! It is on occasions a bit slow, there’s one Hollywood sign reference that keeps getting repeated which gets a bit wearing, yes, LA weather is glorious, and yes, it’s a well known fact that the traffic is terrible! Some of the plot is a bit far fetched and OTT but just put your disbelief suspenders on and go with the flow and enjoy this rollercoaster read!! Overall, this is a compelling, well written and enjoyable page turner. With thanks to NetGalley and Simon and Schuster for the much appreciated arc in return for an honest review.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Heidi

    I love it when authors use their very specific background knowledge as a base for a novel because it usually makes for an intriguing, authentic insight into another world. With her acting background, Steadman allows us a glimpse into Hollywood life in her latest novel THE DISAPPEARING ACT, spicing up the story with a generous sprinkling of murder and intrigue. English actress Mia is auditioning for movie roles in LA when she meets Emily, another hopeful actress from out of town. Minding Emily’s b I love it when authors use their very specific background knowledge as a base for a novel because it usually makes for an intriguing, authentic insight into another world. With her acting background, Steadman allows us a glimpse into Hollywood life in her latest novel THE DISAPPEARING ACT, spicing up the story with a generous sprinkling of murder and intrigue. English actress Mia is auditioning for movie roles in LA when she meets Emily, another hopeful actress from out of town. Minding Emily’s bag and car keys for her whilst she is in the studio, Mia becomes concerned when Emily fails to return to claim her possessions, and Mia’s calls to her mobile remain unanswered. Her suspicions grow when the next day, a stranger turns up on Mia’s doorstep claiming to be Emily and asking for her bag and car keys back. And so starts a story full of mystery and intrigue – who really is Emily? And what has happened to the girl Mia met at the auditions? As soon as I met Mia, I immediately warmed to her. Despite her rise to fame through her movie role as Jane in Jane Eyre, she has remained refreshingly down to earth. A recent break-up with her long term partner, who has left her for another, younger woman, has left her heart broken and has shaken her self-confidence. In the dog-eat-dog world of LA, her innocence renders her as alien as a fish out of water, which is why she is instantly drawn to Emily, who is the only smiling, friendly face around. Through Mia we also get a glimpse into some of the quirks of the Hollywood scene, which I found thoroughly intriguing. Once Mia starts looking into the mystery of Emily’s disappearance, things start to take on a sinister turn, putting Mia’s own life in danger. I was hooked! Even though some suspension of disbelief was required to buy the whole premise of the final reveal, and even some of Mia’s actions, I found the story entertaining and intriguing until the end. Some readers may find Mia a bit naive, but I was touched by her honesty and innocence, which made her more relatable for me. A special mention must go to Steadman’s inclusion of a real-life mystery into her story, the suicide of actress Peg Entwistle, who jumped to her death from the “H” of the Hollywood sign in 1932, and whose body was discovered by a hiker a few days later. Her sad death becomes a symbol of the ruthlessness of Hollywood and has a special significance for Mia – I will say no more. In summary, THE DISAPPEARING ACT offered a fascinating insight behind the glamour of Hollywood, incorporated into an intriguing mystery. It will appeal to readers who are able to suspend disbelief for the sake of a few unexpected twists and a finale I definitely could not have predicted. I really enjoyed Steadman’s writing style and her insider glimpses into the life of an actress, which made for an authentic and compelling read. 3.5 stars Thank you to Netgalley and Simon & Schuster Australia for the free electronic copy of this novel and for giving me the opportunity to provide an honest review. *blog* *facebook* *instagram*

  9. 5 out of 5

    SHOMPA

    This was a psychological thriller that leaned more towards mystery than suspense. Due to the lack of suspense, I was not able to get as engrossed in the story as I would have liked. The main character "Mia" also comes across as very naive and gullible, so I had a hard time liking her character. When I first heard of this book, I was excited to read it. The premise was very interesting, but the book is a total disappointment. This was a psychological thriller that leaned more towards mystery than suspense. Due to the lack of suspense, I was not able to get as engrossed in the story as I would have liked. The main character "Mia" also comes across as very naive and gullible, so I had a hard time liking her character. When I first heard of this book, I was excited to read it. The premise was very interesting, but the book is a total disappointment.

  10. 4 out of 5

    NILTON TEIXEIRA

    I did not enjoy this book. It’s definitely not for me. Good concept but poorly executed. For a thriller, it’s quite slow. The writing felt rushed and a bit amateurish. I almost quit around 60% because I wasn’t happy with the dialogues, but my curiosity kept me going. Unfortunately the characters are very weak and extremely shallow. The storyline is, in my opinion, farfetched. Well, I’m so disappointed that I’d rather not say anything more. At least this is a fast read. As they say, to each his own.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Anissa

    Quite the page-turner. It reminded me of Lynch's Mullholland Drive and the tv show The Arrangement. Both for the "something's not quite right with this dreamy place" feels and also the feeling of falling down a seemingly bottomless pit of crazy. It didn't take long for events to take an eerie turn upon Mia's arrival in LA for pilot season. I enjoyed reading about pilot season as a sole end user of entertainment and having only ever heard the term but clearly not having any idea of what is involv Quite the page-turner. It reminded me of Lynch's Mullholland Drive and the tv show The Arrangement. Both for the "something's not quite right with this dreamy place" feels and also the feeling of falling down a seemingly bottomless pit of crazy. It didn't take long for events to take an eerie turn upon Mia's arrival in LA for pilot season. I enjoyed reading about pilot season as a sole end user of entertainment and having only ever heard the term but clearly not having any idea of what is involved in that whirlwind. It was at times invigorating, dangerous and also absurd and it was easy to see how people could get pulled into the whirlpool of it all and in the case of this story, pulled under entirely. Rare was the moment I could see myself making the same decisions Mia chose to and sometimes I was a bit incredulous that she was 28, her naivete was somewhat unreal. But I still wanted her to figure things out and be safe. I was rooting for Mia to make it out on the other side (I was yelling at the book, "Girl, just get your passport & book a flight! Get out of there now! Don't call that woman back! Just leave it!"). As for other characters, I cared a lot about Emily and given the truth of what happens, I liked that Steadman made me feel so much for her and her fate. George, the oft-referenced ex-boyfriend didn't connect for me and I was a bit annoyed that he was talked about so much. I realized that the breakup was abrupt and difficult for Mia but George loomed far too large for a guy who isn't really present and also isn't described in such a way that he seems like a loss. Mia felt it but I didn't. Nick was fine and served his purpose well. For where the story ends, I'd have appreciated seeing a bit more about that journey but no complaints there. Marla, was quite a character and that's all I can say. The remainder were well done for their parts but I don't want to give away anything. Finally, I very much enjoyed Steadman's descriptions of LA and its environs. As I read I imagined everything bathed in golden, peach and pink hues by day and the glow of the city by night with slashes of purple. The glass tower Mia stayed in was both sleek and creepy and not just because it was occupied by only twenty-odd residents (the remaining hundreds of units were held by off-shore people using them as investments & addresses) and built atop a fault line. Just a lot of well-done evocation of tone and feeling. In words I'll keep in mind for crosswords and puzzles this book gave me "air-con-chilled". It showed up twice in this book and I looked it up but didn't find a definition or any other word use so I can only assume this is the cool feeling from air conditioning. It was used to describe the coolness of skin and diamonds. Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for the Advanced Reader Copy.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Melissa (LifeFullyBooked)

    Decently suspenseful book, I was kept interested from the beginning really wanting to know what was going on and why. The main premise is great: British actress Mia has made a name for herself in the UK and heads to LA to audition for some promising roles. While at an audition, she speaks with a fellow actor named Emily and circumstances occur where Emily goes in for her audition and Mia goes to feed Emily's meter for the car. When Mia returns, Emily is nowhere to be found, and no one seems to kn Decently suspenseful book, I was kept interested from the beginning really wanting to know what was going on and why. The main premise is great: British actress Mia has made a name for herself in the UK and heads to LA to audition for some promising roles. While at an audition, she speaks with a fellow actor named Emily and circumstances occur where Emily goes in for her audition and Mia goes to feed Emily's meter for the car. When Mia returns, Emily is nowhere to be found, and no one seems to know who she is--leaving Mia with Emily's bag, wallet, and keys. She takes them home and a couple of days later finally gets in touch with Emily to come pick the items up. When the woman arrives, she says all the right things but she is NOT the woman Mia met at the audition. Like I said, I was very intrigued with the premise and the author does a great job keeping the suspense going with twists revealed that make everything very mysterious. Where the book fell a bit short for me were some of Mia's choices and things she said and did that were absolutely unrealistic and bizarre. I'm not a fan of armchair detectives and Mia takes chances and does things to try to figure out who Emily really is that no sane person would ever do. At one point, she comes in possession of some critical evidence and instead of going to the police, she actually confronts the suspected bad guy and basically tells him that she knows what happened. Other than her curiosity at what happened to Emily, I could see no point in her getting involved with any of it because she had only met Emily for a few minutes. Even the culminating moment toward the end was totally unbelievable, so many things made me shake my head. I'd still recommend reading this one because the premise is good. Just suspend your disbelief at Mia's actions and enjoy the mystery and the twists along the way. I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book, all opinions are my own.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kelli

    A slow moving story that had me asking "why?" almost constantly as the naive main character got herself deeper and deeper into a very bizarre situation from which she could have easily walked away. The plot got more confusing and less believable as the story progressed to a truly strange ending. There were several instances where Americans said very British things, such as "Are you keen to meet tomorrow?" All in all, this was an odd one, and just barely okay. 2 stars A slow moving story that had me asking "why?" almost constantly as the naive main character got herself deeper and deeper into a very bizarre situation from which she could have easily walked away. The plot got more confusing and less believable as the story progressed to a truly strange ending. There were several instances where Americans said very British things, such as "Are you keen to meet tomorrow?" All in all, this was an odd one, and just barely okay. 2 stars

  14. 5 out of 5

    Julie (JuJu)

    I loved Something in the Water and I've been watching for new books by the author ever since. Mr. Nobody was just a so-so read for me, so this one has restored my confidence in Ms. Steadman. It’s well written, as are all of her novels, and it’s filled with unexpected events. I’m excited to see what she comes out with next! Mia is one of the most irritating characters I’ve read about in a long time. I disagreed with almost every decision she made... but there wouldn’t have been a book if she’d lis I loved Something in the Water and I've been watching for new books by the author ever since. Mr. Nobody was just a so-so read for me, so this one has restored my confidence in Ms. Steadman. It’s well written, as are all of her novels, and it’s filled with unexpected events. I’m excited to see what she comes out with next! Mia is one of the most irritating characters I’ve read about in a long time. I disagreed with almost every decision she made... but there wouldn’t have been a book if she’d listened to me, lol! The beginning was a bit slow, but once I got into it I was hooked! Mia lives in London, is newly single, and her career as an actress is taking off. She flies to LA for auditions and meets Emily, a very friendly woman who is auditioning for the same part. They have a bizarre interaction and Emily disappears, leaving Mia with her car keys and wallet. Of course, Mia doesn’t do any of the logical things with the items and the story begins! Thank you to NetGalley, Catherine Steadman and Ballantine Books, for the opportunity to read this free digital ARC in exchange for my honest opinion! My Rating: 4 ⭐️’s Published: June 8th 2021 by Ballantine Books Pages: 320 Recommend: Yes @CatSteadman @randomhouse @NetGalley #TheDisappearingAct #NetGalley #NoRulesJustThrills #InExchangeForReview #BookReview #PsychologicalThriller #BallantineBooks More on the Author: Twitter: @CatSteadman Instagram: @catsteadman

  15. 5 out of 5

    Carrie

    The Disappearing Act is not the first thriller I’ve read from Catherine Steadman and it probably won’t be the last. The writing in this author’s books does seem to always be incredibly compelling despite my finding a few things that I consider to be slight personal flaws. In this story Mia Eliot is a British actress who has traveled to Los Angeles to attend several auditions with her chance to actually make it as an actress in Hollywood after a successful part. Mia has been set up in a luxurious The Disappearing Act is not the first thriller I’ve read from Catherine Steadman and it probably won’t be the last. The writing in this author’s books does seem to always be incredibly compelling despite my finding a few things that I consider to be slight personal flaws. In this story Mia Eliot is a British actress who has traveled to Los Angeles to attend several auditions with her chance to actually make it as an actress in Hollywood after a successful part. Mia has been set up in a luxurious apartment in a nice building and given a pricey car to make her way around the city all for a few Instagram posts and can’t believe her luck. One afternoon however Mia is waiting for her turn at an audition when she meets another young actress, Emily, auditioning for the same part. As the time comes for Emily to go in she gets flustered and says she needs to feed her parking meter. Not wanting to be rushed in either Mia volunteers to do it for Emily taking her things as Emily heads into the audition. After helping Emily out however Mia can’t find her afterwards and begins to worry something has happened. I picked up this book late one night to begin reading and it was one of those times that I just didn’t want to put it down and kept thinking just one more chapter. The story flows rather well and is completely addictive when it comes to wanting to know what comes next just as I had remembered had happened before with this author. However, I did find something that held me back from a high rating then and now it has happened with a totally different reason. This time I felt I wasn’t overly exited with how the entire book ended which I won’t go into to avoid spoilers but that feeling left me rating this one at three and a half stars. I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley. For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.com/

  16. 4 out of 5

    JaymeO

    What would you do to get your big break? British actress, Mia Eliot, is dumped by her actor boyfriend in the most devastating way. He moves out of their flat without a call, text, or email. When she learns that he is dating his new younger co-star, she decides it’s time for a change. She flies to America in the hopes of getting her big break in Hollywood. When she meets Emily at an audition, she thinks she may have made a new friend. Instead, Emily disappears without her wallet and keys. What hap What would you do to get your big break? British actress, Mia Eliot, is dumped by her actor boyfriend in the most devastating way. He moves out of their flat without a call, text, or email. When she learns that he is dating his new younger co-star, she decides it’s time for a change. She flies to America in the hopes of getting her big break in Hollywood. When she meets Emily at an audition, she thinks she may have made a new friend. Instead, Emily disappears without her wallet and keys. What happened to Emily? I have read three Catherine Steadman thrillers and you would think that I would have learned my lesson by now! Her books always begin with an intriguing premise and lure me into the plot, but leave me somewhat unsatisfied in the end. Unfortunately, The Disappearing Act follows suit with the same formula. I listened to the audiobook, which is read by the author. While she does a great job of switching between British and American accents, I soon became frustrated with the the mistakes in the writing. There are several times where American characters use British terminology, like “car park” instead of “parking lot” and “fancy” instead of “like.” It is also a slow moving book with a ridiculous premise. I did enjoy the Hollywood acting scene, but struggled to root for Mia, as she is a somewhat boring and unlikeable amateur sleuth. The ending is clever, but definitely not realistic or believable. 3.5/5 stars

  17. 5 out of 5

    Faith

    Mia meets Emily at an audition after which Emily disappears, and no one other than Mia seems to be looking for her. The story is set in the cutthroat Hollywood movie and tv business, where the desire to get ahead of the competition seems paramount. The author of this book is also an actress, so there is an authentic feel to the description of the stresses and perks experienced by an English actress who travels to Los Angeles for a series of auditions. The plot was melodramatic but entertaining. Mia meets Emily at an audition after which Emily disappears, and no one other than Mia seems to be looking for her. The story is set in the cutthroat Hollywood movie and tv business, where the desire to get ahead of the competition seems paramount. The author of this book is also an actress, so there is an authentic feel to the description of the stresses and perks experienced by an English actress who travels to Los Angeles for a series of auditions. The plot was melodramatic but entertaining. It could make you wonder exactly how the hot new star got their big break. The first half of the book dragged a little, and the whole side plot about Mia dating a producer could have been left out. Nevertheless, I definitely liked this book more than I liked “Mr. Nobody”, but not as much as I liked “Something in the Water”, so 3.5 stars. The author narrates her own audiobooks and she does a good job. I received a free copy of this book from the publisher.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lori

    First off, I would like to say that I really like Catherine Steadmans writing style. It's easy to follow and flows well. I absolutely loved Something In The Water by her. This one just fell a little short for me. The storyline was good, and I really liked Mia. But I also felt a little cheated because there was no huge surprising twist at the end. At times the story was intense and other times it seemed to drag on endlessly. I would have loved for Mia and Nick's story to be more developed than it First off, I would like to say that I really like Catherine Steadmans writing style. It's easy to follow and flows well. I absolutely loved Something In The Water by her. This one just fell a little short for me. The storyline was good, and I really liked Mia. But I also felt a little cheated because there was no huge surprising twist at the end. At times the story was intense and other times it seemed to drag on endlessly. I would have loved for Mia and Nick's story to be more developed than it was. Overall I am glad that I read this.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Erin Clemence

    Special thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free, electronic ARC of this novel received in exchange for an honest review. Expected publication date: June 8, 2021 British actress Mia Eliot has been invited to LA to audition for an up and coming movie, as well as to take part in the renowned “pilot season”. When she arrives in LA at her first audition, she meets another actress, Emily Bryant, and the two quickly bond. Days later, Emily completely disappears, leaving behind her car a Special thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free, electronic ARC of this novel received in exchange for an honest review. Expected publication date: June 8, 2021 British actress Mia Eliot has been invited to LA to audition for an up and coming movie, as well as to take part in the renowned “pilot season”. When she arrives in LA at her first audition, she meets another actress, Emily Bryant, and the two quickly bond. Days later, Emily completely disappears, leaving behind her car and identification, and Mia cannot get in touch with her. Convinced something has happened to Emily, Mia is determined to find the missing actress. When a woman shows up on Mia’s doorstep claiming to be Emily, Mia expects everything to be resolved. Except for one thing- this woman is not Emily. Mia then begins to get disturbing threats, and items begin to go missing from her secure apartment. What was Emily involved in? Is she missing? Did she even exist at all? Actress-turned-author Catherine Steadman returns with her third novel, “The Disappearing Act”. Steadman is a new author for me, so I went into this one completely blind, enticed by the premise. The nitty gritty details of the acting world take centre stage (pun intended) in this novel, set among the Hollywood elite and the glitz and glamour of the LA acting scene. The fact that Steadman was an actor herself adds some harsh reality and truth to the depiction of money-trumping-all and every-man-for-themselves attitude that LA has embodied in so many onscreen representations. Combined of course, with the tragic #metoo movement, and the misogynistic male-dominated acting industry, “The Disappearing Act” is a powerfully relevant read. Mia is a great character, full of charm and grace and I found her very easy to root for. The female camaraderie that she attempts with Emily is honest and sweet, and Emily herself appears to be friendly and open. The fact that there are so many young females in this novel who look enough alike to be confused for the other make the plotline seem a little unbelievable to me, although I have never faced the acting scene of LA, so perhaps there is some truth to it. I enjoyed the glamorous backdrops and the surreal depiction of the LA lifestyle, and the plot had enough twists and turns that the ending was completely unexpected, but also entirely satisfying. The story was well-researched, having obviously come from Steadman’s personal life experiences with the acting world, and I found the plot to be well-developed, and the characters to be affable and likable. “The Disappearing Act” offers a full blown escape, while maintaining an air of mystery and intrigue that kept me engaged from page one.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Kay Oliver

    First, thank you Ballentine Books and Netgallery for this ARC. I have never read Steadman's work until this novel. I was tickled by the blurb and had to get my hands on it. I'm not a big fan of Hollywood or celebrities in general, but boy do I love a good jaunt in solving crime--especially a missing person case. This story takes readers back stage, behind the scenes of the Hollywood we are privy to as fans and onlookers. That intrigued me and pulled me into this story. A lot of things pushed me First, thank you Ballentine Books and Netgallery for this ARC. I have never read Steadman's work until this novel. I was tickled by the blurb and had to get my hands on it. I'm not a big fan of Hollywood or celebrities in general, but boy do I love a good jaunt in solving crime--especially a missing person case. This story takes readers back stage, behind the scenes of the Hollywood we are privy to as fans and onlookers. That intrigued me and pulled me into this story. A lot of things pushed me back out--weak and unbelievable characterization, implausible happenings, a plot that both fell flat and was full of holes, and an ending the left too many things unanswered. I wish I had better things to say about this novel, but unfortunately, I didn't much enjoy it. I don't think I'll be picking up any more of Steadman's works.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Natasha Niezgoda

    2.5 stars 😒 So the first third was VERY promising, but then the trope of unreliable characters just became too circular and too cliche. The end was predictable. In all honesty, it read more like a domestic drama than thriller. So if you go into this expecting a focus on feelings and inner monologues, then you will be okay.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Luvtoread

    Mia Eliot is a British actress struggling to find her way to success in the film industry. She has just gained some notoriety with her filming of Jane Eyre and her agent has secured an audition across the ocean in spectacular Hollywood. The film is a very "hush, hush" project with a starring role of an actresses lifetime and Mia needs this role because her good-looking boyfriend of six years (also an actor) just up and left her for a young gorgeous model/starlet without a word except a short tex Mia Eliot is a British actress struggling to find her way to success in the film industry. She has just gained some notoriety with her filming of Jane Eyre and her agent has secured an audition across the ocean in spectacular Hollywood. The film is a very "hush, hush" project with a starring role of an actresses lifetime and Mia needs this role because her good-looking boyfriend of six years (also an actor) just up and left her for a young gorgeous model/starlet without a word except a short text message while the world knew before Mia did with pictures of the happy new couple showing up on Instagram, newspapers and magazines. Broken hearted but determined to move on she arrives in beautiful L.A. and is amazed at the fast pace and the over friendliness of strangers that feels somewhat fake to her. At the audition she meets Emily another actress auditioning for a role in the film and she thinks this could be a new friendship while staying in the states. Before the day is over Mia will have Emily's wallet and car keys with no way of contacting her and will soon realize Emily seems to be missing but no one believes her and within a few days Mia wishes that she never met a young woman named Emily and Hollywood would never hold the aura of glittering lights and glamour and beautiful people for her again. I really enjoyed this entertaining and dark story. Mia was a great character, very naive and sweet in a world of vicious wild animals. I thought she was extremely likeable but impulsive with making some very poor decisions yet this added to the charisma of the story. There were some great twists and I had to pay careful attention because the characters would get very confusing at times (in a good way). This was my first book by Catherine Steadman and I'm looking forward to reading her previous two books that have received many great reviews. I definitely recommend this story to anyone who reads mystery books and psychological thrillers. It was fun to read about the darker side of Hollywood although this was a fictional story, one can only imagine how ruthless the film industry could be. I want to thank the publisher "Random House Publishing Group - Ballentine Books" and Netgalley for the opportunity to read this terrific story and any thoughts and opinions expressed are unbiased and mine alone! I have give this intriguing book a rating of 4 Sinister 🌟🌟🌟🌟 Stars!!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jayne

    Competition for coveted roles turns deadly in this dark Hollywood-based drama by actress/author Catherine Steadman. How far will an actress go to get a role?  When British actress Mia Eliot arrives in LA for pilot season to begin a series of auditions, she meets an actress named Emily while waiting for a casting call.  When Emily's name is called, Emily asks Mia (a complete stranger) to hold her keys and her wallet (Huh?). Emily disappears and leaves Mia with her keys and wallet. (Huh?).  Mia unsuc Competition for coveted roles turns deadly in this dark Hollywood-based drama by actress/author Catherine Steadman. How far will an actress go to get a role?  When British actress Mia Eliot arrives in LA for pilot season to begin a series of auditions, she meets an actress named Emily while waiting for a casting call.  When Emily's name is called, Emily asks Mia (a complete stranger) to hold her keys and her wallet (Huh?). Emily disappears and leaves Mia with her keys and wallet. (Huh?).  Mia unsuccessfully tries to locate Emily and focuses all of her efforts on trying to find her. (Huh?)  Several days later, a woman claiming to be Emily contacts Mia and even though Mia is sure that this woman is not Emily, she gives the woman Emily's keys and wallet . (Huh?). Since Mia is convinced that the woman who now has Emily's wallet and keys is not the real Emily, she becomes determined to find the real Emily.  (Huh?) Although the book was well-written and provided interesting information about the entertainment industry, plot holes were plentiful and the pace of the book was very, very slow.  In addition, many aspects of the book were implausible; creating a situation where the book just lacked credibility. I listened to the audiobook that was read by the author.  I usually don't like it when authors read their own books (unless it's a memoir), but since author Catherine Steadman is also a trained actress, she was able to pull this off and her narration of the book was excellent.   Two stars rounded up.

  24. 5 out of 5

    MicheleReader

    Meet Mia Eliot, a British actress heading for stardom. She is receiving acclaim for playing Jane in Eyre. When her actor boyfriend leaves her for his new co-star, Mia heads to Los Angeles for pilot season, the period studios cast for new projects. Her agent lines up some promising auditions. When she arrives, she drives past the famed Hollywood sign and is told the infamous story of a young actress who, in 1932, jumped off it to her death after receiving too many rejections. This story serves as Meet Mia Eliot, a British actress heading for stardom. She is receiving acclaim for playing Jane in Eyre. When her actor boyfriend leaves her for his new co-star, Mia heads to Los Angeles for pilot season, the period studios cast for new projects. Her agent lines up some promising auditions. When she arrives, she drives past the famed Hollywood sign and is told the infamous story of a young actress who, in 1932, jumped off it to her death after receiving too many rejections. This story serves as a cautionary tale of what awaits her. During one audition, she meets Emily, who is also up for the same part. Emily asks Mia to put some money in her parking meter. When she returns, Emily is gone and Mia has her wallet and car keys. After several days of trying to track her down, Emily comes to where Mia is staying to pick up her possessions. But while she looks almost the same, Mia realizes that this is not the woman she met at the audition. Mia knows something strange is taking place and while trying to land the part of a lifetime, she becomes obsessed with finding out what happened to Emily. The Disappearing Act was an enjoyable book that had me anxious to find out what was going on. Author Catherine Steadman is also an award-winning actress from England so she clearly knows her way around the entertainment business. From its glamour and glitz to its dark, ugly side. This is a well-written book with lots of suspense. I did find myself thinking several times, “Mia, what are you doing?” as she was extremely naïve and made some ill-advised decisions. If you can overlook this and simply suspend disbelief, this is a very entertaining book. If poor decision-making by the main character drives you nuts, you may not feel as positive about it as I did. Any book that can keep me on the edge of my seat like this one did gets a thumbs up. Many thanks to NetGalley, Ballantine / Random House Publishing Book, and the author for the opportunity to read this page-turner in advance of its June 8, 2021 publication. Review posted on MicheleReader.com.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Obsidian

    Please note that I received this book via NetGalley. This did not affect my rating or review. Wow. So this was just all over the place. I couldn't get a handle on the story and things just read as rushed. Also the entire premise was very unbelievable. Nothing makes a lick of sense and then you get to the ending and I think that Steadman is trying to throw a twist and another twist and I just went huh. "The Disappearing Act" follows Mia Eliot who flies off to L.A. to audition for some t.v. shows Please note that I received this book via NetGalley. This did not affect my rating or review. Wow. So this was just all over the place. I couldn't get a handle on the story and things just read as rushed. Also the entire premise was very unbelievable. Nothing makes a lick of sense and then you get to the ending and I think that Steadman is trying to throw a twist and another twist and I just went huh. "The Disappearing Act" follows Mia Eliot who flies off to L.A. to audition for some t.v. shows as well as an Oscar worthy movie. Mia is reeling from her long time boyfriend moving out and moving in with a young ingénue he met on the set of his new play. Mia though is determined to turn her L.A. trip into an opportunity to get over her ex. However, things fall apart when during an audition, Mia meets a young woman named Emily. Through the most dumb set-up ever (yeah I said it) Mia agrees to put money in Emily's car's meter so Emily can go first into an audition. Mia is left holding (literally) Emily's car keys, wallet, and other belongings. When Mia comes out of her own audition she is left not knowing what to do next. Enter a mysterious man named Nick. Anyway, the long and short of it is that Mia is determined to find Emily, but when she does, is blown away that the woman she meets is not the same woman from the audition. I don't even know what to say. If this set-up had appeared on Lifetime when I was a teen, my friends and I would have ate this movie up. But reading this whole thing in a book as just not good. I don't even know what else to say. The plot is not realistic. The entire reasoning behind said plot was dumb. I just couldn't get into it. It didn't help that the characters are not memorable at all. And then we throw in a rape for good measure that just....I don't even know what to say. I think that Steadman was going for the whole Hollywood is dark and seedy behind the scenes, but once again the premise in this does not work. Maybe if she had focused on one plot point it could have, but when she threw in the other thing (yes I am being vague) it just got a little too Single White Female for me. Mia is just there. I don't even know what else to say about her. She's reeling from her ex leaving her, but when she interacts with other people it feels like she's psychoanalyzing them every five seconds. I just felt bored by her. When she went into detective mode it just didn't even fit the personality of the woman we had met at that point. The other characters are just bland and there. Nick, just was whatever the story needed at the time. We also never get a sense of Mia's ex George, because we just hear about moments they had together. If Steadman wants to make readers care that Mia got dumped, she should have done a better set up of their relationship. The writing was so-so. Everyone sounds the same. I think I am shocked cause Mia is supposedly British and does not 'sound' it when you are reading the story. Not that I think everyone is going to run around saying loo and all of that mess. But some things took me out of the story. For example, Mia at one point is just driving around with a gun. I still went, so does everyone just know how to handle guns now? The flow was not good on this one. The story just drags. When you get to the final execution of the story you are just baffled at the reveals. Or at least I was. The setting of this story is L.A., but it doesn't feel like L.A. I think if Steadman was going for a Noir book (which I think she was in some respects) she needed to have a different rhythm for L.A. I started thinking about the Harry Bosch books and how Michael Connelly often has the city as another character in his books. The ending just fell flat.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Dennis

    3.5 stars I know that Catherine Steadman is a very popular author, but her books just don't vibe with me, sorry! I know that everyone loved Something in the Water and I can totally see why people enjoyed it, but I have just read so much of this genre and expect something different now. That being said, The Disappearing Act does provide something new for readers. Taking place in Los Angeles, British star Mia Eliot has been given the opportunity to jump from local British actor into a Hollywood 3.5 stars I know that Catherine Steadman is a very popular author, but her books just don't vibe with me, sorry! I know that everyone loved Something in the Water and I can totally see why people enjoyed it, but I have just read so much of this genre and expect something different now. That being said, The Disappearing Act does provide something new for readers. Taking place in Los Angeles, British star Mia Eliot has been given the opportunity to jump from local British actor into a Hollywood starlet. As Mia begins auditioning for roles and trying to gain the respect of Hollywood casting directors, she encounters a woman named Emily. Emily and Mia forge a nice repertoire. As the two bond over casting, Emily asks Mia for a strange favor, and Mia obliges, but Emily is nowhere to be found afterwards. It isn't until the next day that Emily returns to Mia's home, but something is wrong, this isn't the Emily that she met the day prior. The Disappearing Act has some excellent writing and Catherine Steadman's background in acting definitely can be seen in this book. The story is pretty entertaining when it starts off, but I felt as if the middle begin to drag out too long. I did think the story would develop in a certain way, and was actually disappointed it didn't go that route because I felt like that was a pretty big red herring, which I usually enjoy, but moments like this then feel like a waste of time reading. However, I do think this book has an audience and I definitely would give the author another chance with me. I went in not thinking that I would like it, to being pleasantly surprised that I was able to be entertained enough along the way.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Mark

    A tale about an actress written by an actress ( best known role in Downton Abbey ) so it was good to feel you were getting the ‘inside story’ on some things throughout the book, I particularly loved the ‘Gifting Suite’ where a floor of a hotel is taken over by top brands who want to gift the rich and famous their wares according to the colour you are allotted, Platinum being the best, depends on the gifts you get ( yes it’s morally dubious and excessively crude but double yes I would love to go A tale about an actress written by an actress ( best known role in Downton Abbey ) so it was good to feel you were getting the ‘inside story’ on some things throughout the book, I particularly loved the ‘Gifting Suite’ where a floor of a hotel is taken over by top brands who want to gift the rich and famous their wares according to the colour you are allotted, Platinum being the best, depends on the gifts you get ( yes it’s morally dubious and excessively crude but double yes I would love to go to one 😁) Most of the story is based in L.A. and around a fairly complex plot involving 3 women, one of who goes missing, complex can also be interchanged with nonsensical at times, parts of it at any rate but it’s a quick read, some great descriptive writing re Hollywood and all that goes on there and even though a medium to large pinch of salt was needed it was enjoyable to a point 6/10 3 Stars

  28. 4 out of 5

    Anastacia Reads Stuff

    This was my first Catherine Steadman novel and I really enjoyed it. Her background in acting was very prevalent in this book and I found all the behind the insight very intriguing. I had a love hate relationship with the main character. Part of me just wanted to shake her and tell her to mind her own business. The story kept you going though and by the end I HAD to know what happened and it did take a turn I didn't expect. Overall a really enjoyable read. This was my first Catherine Steadman novel and I really enjoyed it. Her background in acting was very prevalent in this book and I found all the behind the insight very intriguing. I had a love hate relationship with the main character. Part of me just wanted to shake her and tell her to mind her own business. The story kept you going though and by the end I HAD to know what happened and it did take a turn I didn't expect. Overall a really enjoyable read.

  29. 5 out of 5

    ʚϊɞ Shelley's ʚϊɞ Book Nook

    This book is more a suspenseful mystery than a psychological thriller, but I really liked it. I felt really caught up in Mia's delema and I couldn't stop reading because I wanted to know what the heck happened the Emily. I also liked how part of the plot had a #MeToo vibe. It is a subject that we should never stop talking about and it doesn't just happen in Hollywood. Now, this was a great book that I couldn't help but to devour. From start to finish I didn't want to put it down and This book is more a suspenseful mystery than a psychological thriller, but I really liked it. I felt really caught up in Mia's delema and I couldn't stop reading because I wanted to know what the heck happened the Emily. I also liked how part of the plot had a #MeToo vibe. It is a subject that we should never stop talking about and it doesn't just happen in Hollywood. Now, this was a great book that I couldn't help but to devour. From start to finish I didn't want to put it down and with every newfound clue into Emily's disappearance, I was pulled deeper and deeper into the plot. This is truly one of those "just one more chapter" books only, you'll say that right up to the very end and even then, you'll want more. Overall, this was a quick and enjoyable novel and I would definitely read another book by this author. Disclosure: Thank you NetGalley, Catherine Steadman and Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an impartial review; all opinions are my own. #TheDisappearingAct #NetGalley

  30. 4 out of 5

    Liz Barnsley

    The Disappearing Act was a beautifully twisty turny psychological thriller set in the glittery world of Hollywood, auditions and competition. Our main protagonist Mia is a British actress of some success who, during a trip to LA for various role possibilities meets the friendly yet enigmatic Emily who promptly disappears, leaving a stranger in her place... That's the mystery then and what follows is a cleverly intuitive character drama that digs underneath the surface glamour to a world of manipu The Disappearing Act was a beautifully twisty turny psychological thriller set in the glittery world of Hollywood, auditions and competition. Our main protagonist Mia is a British actress of some success who, during a trip to LA for various role possibilities meets the friendly yet enigmatic Emily who promptly disappears, leaving a stranger in her place... That's the mystery then and what follows is a cleverly intuitive character drama that digs underneath the surface glamour to a world of manipulation, half truths and obfuscation. Mia is a genuinely engaging character who you happily follow along with throughout her journey to the truth, her decision making good and bad changing the perspective until finally all is revealed. It is an excellent unpredictable thriller with a great ending and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

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