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4.7 out of 5 stars
43
4.7 out of 5 stars
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on 1 July 2000
The book itself is very useful as core book on the basics of magic. It starts off with many well known essentials in magic such as the art of forcing and plaming. But as it tries to offer variations of the same trick it seems to become repititive and lacking of true imagination. However the basics are extreamly well illusrated and supurbly simplified in language- very easy to understand. The book then takes you through many topics, each well done in quanity. But the book becomes too similar and only the presentation changes, which is good for beginers learning to form a unique style of magic, but far too cliched for regular magicians looking for something new in self-tutor books or bibles. On a personal note, the back of the book deals with stage magic and magic tricks involving complicated and unusual items like balls of wool. However these tricks will make you look like a poor Haven seaside entertainer and focus too much attention on the tricks being obvioudly gimmicked. For someone looking for a book involving instuctions mainly on levels of skill and manipulation, then it is too simple but for someone who likes the unusual gimmicked tricks then its perfect. Wilson delivers an assultment of a large varity. This book is perfect for children and people just looking for a playful hobbie but people who are slightly more serious begginers, who want to seriouly show off would be better off getting "An Idiots guide to magic". None the less its implications are good and is never a complete waste of money, there is always something to interest.
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on 6 June 2005
hmmm, having read the amazing reviews for this book and as a beginner** in the world of magic i thought this would be perfect for me. In content, you cant fault it - by that i mean the postman must've had a sore shoulder after deliveing this baby! visually it's great and all tricks are accompanied by clear diagrams which do help...however, its main flaw is 'the tricks arn't that good'!!!! i found myself getting bored reading it and it reminded me of my paul daniels days! the book is split mainly into two sections; the first is card magic, the second is everything else (ie coins, impromtu tricks, stage magic, rope magic, etc)...the whole first section is quite easily surpassed by 'the royal road to card magic' and the second half is a bolstered version of 'magic for kids'...as a total beginner to the world of magic this book would be great as an overview of all the basic concepts however i considered myself a beginner until i read this!? take from that what you will
**when i say beginner i mean i've been dabbling all my life (with paul daniels kits, etc...) but only began to take it seriously in the past year and am still building up my collection
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on 8 January 2008
Being an amateur magician, I have read (and own) several books on the topic. Most books about Magic lack clarity and especially figures, so that they are really hard to read. After being frustrated by other books, Mark Wilson's Complete Course in Magic actually opened my eyes: it is extremely clear, and every trick is carefully explained with plenty of figures - the author took thousands photos for the book, that were then rendered to figures. Also, every trick is explained step by step, and useful comments are added at the end. The covered material is quite broad, and covers most of the basics tricks that every respected magician should have in his/her repertoire. Some comments on Amazon complain about the fact that this book is basic and it does not cover advanced topics; while this is true, I have to say that this excellent book is THE ONLY one I would recommend to anybody starting doing Magic; indeed, I was able to perform more advanced tricks explained in other books only after reading Mark Wilson's course.
In conclusion, I definitely recommend this book to everybody wanting to build a solid knowledge of the basics of Magic; read more advanced books only after having studied this one!
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on 1 August 2014
I've seen some wild prices for this book at other sites, and from other sellers on this site. For the £10 I paid for it it's been a great purchase, I have really been eased into the world of magic very gently, it's been a great guide for a beginner and exactly what I was looking for. This contains magic for beginners and escorts alike, giving plenty of advice from simple card tricks to stage performances.
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on 28 December 2015
A bit dAted, needs re-writing to provide a more modern feel to the tricks. Some of the stuff is a little bit pointless and I would consider them as fillers. However in all fairness it provides an excellent range of tricks across the different spectrums of mAgic and is well worth the time invested, but you will need to think of a more modern context for some of these tricks to make them 21st century appropriate in terms of the patter provided to link the tricks to some sort of modern context for the participant.
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on 8 November 2014
This is the best tenner I have ever spent on a book. There are DVD's out there by famous names which cost £30 - £40 and don't contain a tenth of the material this book has to offer. Incredibly well illustrated, even better clarity in the step by step instructions. If you want to have a repertoire of tricks this is well worth it.
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on 10 June 2015
A classical book on magic of all branches. Comes with some black & white images. Heavy book, even as a paperback edition. Very encouraging approach on introducing magic to the beginner and the basic rules. Could do with some updates and maybe some pictures in colours in the next edition. This book goes beyond beginners' magic, as it also features bits of show and big stage magic.
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on 20 February 1997
Mark Wilson has done a great service for the magic community. This book is a must have for the young magician wanting to get started on his road to fun and msytery.

This book covers cards, coins, sponge balls and all the way up to large stage illusions.

This book belongs on every magicians shelf.
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on 6 December 2012
It really is a Complete Course in Magic...not that you will learn everything but you will learn a wide range of styles of magic as well as the standard sleights within each area of magic: cards, coins, balls, rope, even stage magic. It has many excellent diagrams taking you through step-by-step and easy to follow instructions and nothing looks overly scary.

Learning a few tricks and sleights from each section will allow you to do magic from all areas and most likely allow you to find which style you enjoy and therefore move into buying more advanced books on those subjects.

I've used a few of the tricks and the cup & ball routine is an absolute stormer and the final reveal knocks them dead.
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on 17 February 1999
This is pretty cool. I would rated the best magic book.
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