It takes a combination of psychic ability and a knowledge of magic tricks to solve the murder of a magician.
Private investigator David Randall (Mixed Signals, 2012, etc.) is suddenly flush with cases. A socialite asks him to find her missing diamond bracelet, and magicians Taft and Lucas Finch want him to locate a missing box which was reputedly owned by Harry Houdini. Randall is happy to have his mind occupied so that he’s not constantly feeling guilty about the death of his daughter. Although he’d like to marry his housemate and girlfriend, Kary, his overprotectiveness puts her off. Another housemate, Camden, is always willing to help on cases. But although his psychic powers are often helpful, Camden has problems of his own. He’s lost his beautiful singing voice, and Ellin, the girl he wants to marry, reports troubles with her Psychic Service Network’s TV programming. A visit to the magic club where the Finch brothers were working reveals the body of Taft, murdered and hidden in a magician’s trunk. As always, the cops warn Randall away, but since both the club owner and Lucas want him to solve the crime and find the box, he continues to investigate the local magicians, whose tight little community is a hotbed of jealousy, bruised egos and theft. Kary succeeds in becoming a magician’s assistant, and Camden uses his abilities to try to get rid of the pushy fake psychic who’s driving Ellen crazy, but it’s a combination of clues from both that finally solves the crime.
The charms of Tesh’s quirky characters often outweigh the mystery.