by Joshua Jay
Magic is everywhere, from the big spectacle celebrity of David Copperfield and Siegfried and Roy to the quirky Penn and Teller to the spooky David Blaine and Criss Angel to the endless material on YouTube. But until now, learning it has never been easy—that's all about to change with Magic, a book that does for close-up magic what How to Grill does for barbecue. Written by charismatic young magician Joshua Jay, Magic combines expertise, photographs, step-by-step directions showing how to perform 100 tricks, and a DVD that demonstrates 35 of them.
Joshua Jay took home the top prize at the World Magic Seminar (the Olympics of magic) when he was just 16 years old. Ten years later, he continues to perform magic, write about magic, eat, sleep, and breathe magic. Here, he brings all his passion and knowledge to teaching magic. Each trick is broken down into the Effect, the Secret, the Set-up, and, most important, the Performance, with lessons on what to say, how to direct the audience's attention, where to keep your hands, and so on. (In other words, how to be smart about the things your audience is surprisingly clueless about.)
Here are the Ten Greatest Card Tricks; tricks to dazzle a dinner date; tricks to perform for the boss (poke a hole through his shirt, then magically mend it); tricks especially for kids; and even tricks for an audience in another state—with "Australian Self-Help," you can find a participant's chosen card over the phone. It's the Aha! book for a subject whose time has come.