on 13 February 2002
Tired of magic books that promise to turn you into the next Paul Daniels but end up making you look like Tommy Cooper? Well you shouldn't have bought them then should you? You should have bought 'Self Working Table Magic' instead. Right from the off I could see that this book was different. It is just the down to earth kind of approach that I'd been looking for. The author takes you through each trick step by step highlighting the strong and weak parts of each one. There's none of that short-cut writing where the author just tells you to go away and practice some impossible move forever and ever. Top illustrations too. Well done Schmidt
Once converted you won't look back. Furves has an excellent range of books in the series, as if this one doesn't provide you with enough trickery to keep you busy for the rest of your life. The every day objects used are an especially nice feature since it makes you appear to be one of those cool, spur-of-the-moment magicians instead of a dinner jacketed faker that nobody really likes. Just a couple of words of warning though: Don't get carried away with the new-found powers that this book will present for you. Just cause you know how to do it properly doesn't mean you don't have to practice. And remember not everyone likes magic all the time. It's a bit like juggling, pick the wrong audience and they will hate you.
on 11 January 2005
I have just started getting into magic and thought this would be a great title to get. My interest is in magic which requires no preparation and can be done with common objects.
however, this book was written at least 20 years ago (the copyright notice at the front is for 1981). Ie, written when the like of Paul Daniels were popular. the problem is that many of the tricks are, frankly, a bit rubbish. Audiences are now significantly more sophisticated. Yes, there are some tricks here and your audience will wonder how they were done, but the tricks themselves just aren't impressive.
in this post David Blaine, Derren Brown world, the reactions you get aren't "wow, that was amazing please tell me how you did it", the reactions are more "well, not bad".
As for the tricks themselves - there are tricks with matches (the sort of thing you see in pubs), handkerchiefs, dice, safety pins, coins, rubber bands and some other bits and pieces. You'll discount most of the tricks. some of the ways to do the tricks means you can't use them (eg some tricks use your sleeve to hide objects - I mean, please!)
At this price, i'm not kicking myself for buying it because it's very cheap, but don't expect to find any "killer" tricks.