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Manipulation (Book Two of The Savant Trilogy)

PART OF The Savant Trilogy SERIES
By: Ning Cai
Publisher: Epigram Books
  • Description
  • Praise
  • About the Author
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    Six months after teen savant Maxine Schooling helped the CID capture the Singapore Spectre, she has been once again roped into a murder investigation. An unrelated grouping of people is being killed by what witnesses can only refer to as a vampire. At the same time, Max meets a former colleague of her parents, who can potentially give her clues to whoever killed her family and put her in a coma.

  • “Ning Cai is a wonder.” –Neil Gaiman, internationally celebrated author of The Sandman and The Ocean at the End of the Lane

    “Smart and funny, Max is exactly the best kind of companion to travel with through this clever, high-octane thriller. After the first book, I was hooked, and this second instalment in the series doesn’t disappoint. This is Max coming into her own. More please!” –Jane McKie, author of Kitsune and senior lecturer, University of Edinburgh

    “Maxine Schooling is the funny, curious, kick-ass best friend you always wanted, in a twisty, action-packed adventure that grabs you from the first page. Manipulation has never been so much fun!” –Jane Alexander, award-winning author of A User's Guide to Make-Believe

    “Ning Cai’s writing has the drama and invention one might expect from a former star performer in the world of magical illusion. Her stories unfold at pace with numerous surprising twists, all carefully planned, one feels, not to trick the reader but to entertain, which she does not only ‘in spades’, but all the suits in a deck of cards.” –Robert Alan Jamieson, author of Plague Clothes

  • Ning Cai is the author of The Savant Trilogy—a young adult series beginning with the bestselling novel Misdirection (longlisted for the 2016 Epigram Books Fiction Prize)—as well as the Singapore Literature Prize-shortlisted memoir Who is Magic Babe Ning? She is also the co-author of three additional books: a travel account (Adventures of 2 Girls, with Pamela Ho), a middle-grade novel (Magicienne, with Don Bosco), and a creativity self-help guide (Game of Thoughts, with John Teo).

    For over a decade, she was known as “Magic Babe” Ning, a multi-award-winning stage illusionist and escape artist known as “the sexiest woman in magic”. Lauded for her death-defying acts and record-setting feats, Ning performed for Middle Eastern royalty and showcased her brand of deadly sexy magic to an international audience on stage and on TV. She was also the guest entertainer for Royal Caribbean and Celebrity Cruises, performing for thousands on the high seas. After a brief period of retirement, she returned in 2017 as the mentalist Ning: Mind Magic Mistress.

    Besides being engaged as magic consultant for various projects, she has starred in popular Mediacorp TV shows such as Meat and Greed 2 (Channel 5),吃饱没3(Eat Already? 3) (Channel 8), Love in a Time of Change (Channel NewsAsia) & Record Breakers (Okto). A TEDx speaker and committee member of the Singapore Council of Women's Organisations’s Women’s Register, Ning has led writing workshops both in person and on Zoom, and is no stranger to the annual Singapore Writers Festival. Recipient of a 2018 National Arts Council Arts Scholarship, Ning earned a Masters with Distinction in Creative Writing from the University of Edinburgh. She now resides in Europe with her spouse and their little boy. You can find her online at

ISBN: 9789814785426
Cover Type: Paperback
Page Count: 256
Year Published: 2021
Size: 198mm x 129mm