by Gigi Pandian


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“In Pandian’s highly entertaining, fast-paced fifth outing for spunky historian Jaya Jones, Jaya flies from her native San Francisco to Kyoto, Japan…As usual, Pandian dishes up authentic history and cultural tidbits along with a first-class mystery. She also adds just the right light touch of romance.” – Publishers Weekly

A fabled illusion performed by a stage magician who claims to possess real supernatural powers. A treasure from the colonial era in India when international supremacies vied for power. A phantom trading ship lost over 200 years ago. And a ninja whose murderous intentions in present-day Japan connect the deeds of a long-dead trader who was much more than he seemed…

When Jaya travels from San Francisco to Japan with her stage magician best friend Sanjay—a.k.a. The Hindi Houdini—for his Japanese debut, she jumps at the chance to pursue her own research that could solve a tantalizing centuries-old mystery.

With the colorful autumn leaves of historic Kyoto falling around her, Jaya soon loses sight of what’s real and what’s a deception. A mysterious ninja attempts to sabotage Sanjay’s trick, along with Japan’s most controversial magician, Akira. Ancient folklore blurs the lines between illusion and reality when a magician’s assistant appears to be a kitsune, a mythical fox spirit. As tricks escalate to murder, Jaya and her friends must unravel secrets hidden in the ancient capital of Japan, before one of their own becomes the next victim.

“A beautifully complex, fast-paced mystery—a well-crafted blend of modern magic and ancient secrets, full of compelling characters and set in one of Japan’s most beautiful—and mysterious—locations.” – Susan Spann, Author of the Hiro Hattori Mysteries

Related subjects include: cozy mysteries, women sleuths, whodunit mysteries (whodunnit), action adventure, murder mystery series, book club recommendations, amateur sleuth books, international mysteries.

Books in the Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery Series:







Part of the Henery Press Mystery Series Collection, if you like one, you'll probably like them all.

Author Bio:

USA Today bestselling author Gigi Pandian is the child of cultural anthropologists from New Mexico and the southern tip of India. She spent her childhood being dragged around the world, and now lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. Gigi writes the Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt mysteries, the Accidental Alchemist mysteries, and locked-room mystery short stories. Gigi’s fiction has been awarded the Malice Domestic Grant and Lefty Awards, and been nominated for Macavity and Agatha Awards. Find her online at

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781635112511
Publisher: Henery Press
Publication date: 05/23/2017
Series: A Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery , #5
Pages: 294
Sales rank: 469,180
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.62(d)

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THE NINJA'S ILLUSION 4.6 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
Christy41970 More than 1 year ago
When I read Michaelangelo's Ghost last year, I absolutely loved it. It was the first book by Gigi that I'd read, but knew it wouldn't be the last! I was so excited when my wish to review The Ninja's Illusion was granted! I loved this one just as much. The characters are so much fun, and I loved this mysterious storyline. It definitely kept me guessing until the very end. I love it when books do that! I highly recommend this author and this series! If you have time, you should start at the beginning of the series, but you can read this as a stand alone. I just think it's more fun when you know a bit about the characters. If you're a fan of mystery books with great characters, you'll love The Ninja's Illusion!
dibbylodd More than 1 year ago
What a marvelous ride! This is an action packed adventure with lots of history woven in. Jaya is fascinating. We get more insight into her, and Sanjay, and Lane. Great magicians. Spectacular tricks. A terrific read.
3no7 More than 1 year ago
“The Ninja’s Illusion” by Gigi Pandiana is the fifth book in the “Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt” series. It is not necessary to have read the previous books in the series because the author provides quick background comments in the context of the storyline to fill in anything needed from the previous books. However, as a new reader I had to spend some time sorting out all the players. This story is about magic, stage magic with all its redirection, illusion, and trickery. Jaya, the main character, travels to Japan with her stage magician friend, Sanjay. While there, she researches a tantalizing centuries-old mystery. Clues abound, but just like stage magic, distractions abound as well. Jaya and her friends struggle to find answers as secrets from both the past and the present converge. The characters are interesting and likeable. Pandian’s vivid descriptions create an exotic and genuine sense of place by interweaving abundant Japanese culture, traditions, and folklore into the plot. The pace is generally fast with only a few slower sections. I received a copy of “The Ninja’s Illusion” from Gigi Pandian, Henery Press, and NetGalley. I found the story interesting even though I had not read any of the previous books. I enjoyed reading “The Ninja’s Illusion,” and now I must go back and find the treasures in the other books in the series.
CozyUpWithKathy More than 1 year ago
everything I could ask for in a book THE NINJA'S ILLUSION by Gigi Pandian The Fifth Jaya Jones Treasure Hunt Mystery Jaya Jones is overwhelmed with requests for help, both in historical research and treasure hunting. When Dr. Nakamura has questions about her work on the East India trade routes she decides to go to Japan in person. It's the perfect time as her best friend Sanjay, the Hindi Houdini, is also in Japan working with a controversial stage magician who supposedly can perform real miracles. But when Sanjay tells her not to come and the video call is prematurely disconnected, Jaya gets worried. Sure, Sanjay can be overdramatic, but something in his expression and voice said the danger was very real. Now Jaya is off on another adventure filled with history, peril, and treasure! I always get excited when I hear that a new Jaya Jones mystery is being released, but when I discovered her latest would take her to Japan I was positively giddy! I'm fascinated by Japanese culture and traditions and they are entwined in this novel with dexterity. Illusion, deception, betrayal, and ninjas! All that and more can be found in this fifth Jaya Jones adventure. Gigi Pandian once again makes history come alive with stories, both past and present. rich in detail, filled with vivid descriptions and compelling characters. With slight of hand and misdirection the center of the magicians' universe these characters, magician or not, are forced to look deeply within themselves and decide if who they see is who they truly want to be. Which persona is the true self? Are they willing to accept their own truth and, if so, at what cost? THE NINJA'S ILLUSION is more than a compelling mystery. It's a serious character study and a fascinating historical story amid the intriguing backdrop of Japan. It also has plenty of humor and lots of action. In short, THE NINJA'S ILLUSION delivers everything I could ask for in a book. FTC Disclosure – The publisher sent me a digital ARC provided through NetGalley, in the hopes I would review it.
Tangen More than 1 year ago
murder, mystery, myths-legends, Japanese lore, fakir lore, illusionists, history and culture, historical places events Meet Jaya Jones, history professor extraordinaire and several of her friends. Tamarind is a very brilliant and colorful college librarian, Sanjay is a wacky magician who failed law school only to become an accomplished magician with roots in India, now working with an egomaniac magician in Japan. Murder, a mysterious fakir magic trick no one can seem to replicate, and interpersonal issues make for a riveting read. There are lots of plot twists, and the misdirection is not only on the stage. Of course, there is the suspense, humor, snarkiness, action, and history insights that we love and expect. The publisher's blurb give clues, but can't begin to prepare you for the addictive nature of the book that seems to demand that it be read in one sitting! Thank you, NetGalley, for the opportunity to receive this gift from the publisher!
AnnieMarch26 More than 1 year ago
As I have come to expect since Book 1, this story had an interesting mystery with just the right amount of historical details to add flavor. I also appreciate the beautiful countries that the author gives us insight into with each new book. I am really invested in the core characters in this series so it was wonderful revisiting many of the beloved characters from previous books as well as meeting new ones. I have loved Jaya and Lane from the moment they met in Book 1 because they make an incredible couple and team. This was evident when Lane was able to help Jaya see the answers she had but hadn't yet pieced together. I am looking forward to the next book in the series because I have so many questions that I am hoping will get answered. I am also looking forward to both Lane's and Jaya's reaction to the reappearance of the expected guest at Jaya'a home. For now, I will just be counting down the days until the audio-book for The Ninja's Illusion is available because the only thing better than reading the stories is to enjoy them in the audio-book format. I received a free, advance copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my unbiased review.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was randomly selected to receive this as an ARC from NetGalley. This is my honest review of it. I love the Jaya Jones series and was anxious to read this one. It never disappointed. Each time Jaya gets involved in treasure hunts, the locations and history used makes you want to see those places. The Fushimi Imari shrine drew me in this time. But aside from that, Gigi does an exceptional job in writing a mystery that has you trying to figure it out right up to the very end. And the way this one ends, I'm curious what her next exploit will be. I first read about Jaya in the prequel Fool's Gold in Other People's Baggage. After that, I've read all the books in the series. I think you'll enjoy reading about Jaya and her friends and family. Just try it.
MaraBlaise More than 1 year ago
The Ninja's Illusion is the latest book in the Jaya Jones series and this is a series that I truly love to read since I love reading adventures mystery books in exotic settings. This time Jaya travels to Japan where here best friend Sanjay a.k.a. The Hindi Houdini is working with the controversial magician, Akira who is said to be able to do magic for real. However, something is wrong, Sanjay seems to want Jaya to stay home, but that just makes her more eager to travel to Japan. And, when she gets there doesn't it take long for Jaya to realize that something is definitely wrong when Sanjay and she discovers a man dressed as a Ninja in a Buddhist temple watching them..z The Ninja's Illusion is an entertaining book to read, just as the previous I have read has been. It can without any problems be read as stand-alone. The story is intriguing, and I love the easy-going banter between Jaya, Sanjay, and Tamarind. However, to be honest, was there a moment around half the book when I felt that the story just didn't have the same thrilling feeling as the previous did like the pacing was a bit off and I wanted something to happen to get the book back on track. It could be all the Jaya, Sanjay and Lane (Jaya's ex) drama. I have never liked the whole triangle drama thing and as much as I like Sanjay wasn't I that interested in this new development. Thankfully it was resolved in a good way. Also, Tamarind showing up around the time of the BIG drama thing helped put the book back on track. Man, it's hard sometimes to write about things in books without spoiling it... The Jaya Jones series is fabulous, and I recommend it warmly!