Card Magic USA (ebook) compiled and edited by Peter Duffie.

Overlooked by Al Smith

Card Magic USA (ebook) compiled and edited by Peter Duffie.
More than 280 Pages featuring a mix of 80 moves, routines ideas, hints and tips and more.
Illustrated with photos and line drawings.
A collection of largely previously unpublished from more than umpteen (not quite 50, in fact) very active US card people. Plus a Bonus Section from some Past Masters.
Available as a download from Peter Duffieís Alternative Magic. £19.00 Sterling, $29.95 US.

Well, whatís to say? Another card book? Yes indeed, Iím pleased to say. Peter Duffie has long been a producer of stylish card stuff, usually his own. In recent times heís turned his hand to compiling and editing material from, well, all over the place really. Not all cards, this is reflected in such titles as England Up Close, Scotland Up Close, Mind Blasters, Miraculous Minds, to name not very many. If youíve seen any of these, youíll know the quality he produces; and youíll want to dib in. Check out Peterís website for a full list of the contributors; thereís too many to list here. Just a few of the big hitters, sampled at random are:

Lee Asher, John Bannon, Steve Beam, John B. Born, Steve Bryant , Jack Carpenter, Steve Draun, Steve Dusheck, Steve Ehlers, Cameron Francis, JK Hartman, Harry Lorayne, Bill Malone, Max Maven, Jon Racherbaumer, Steve Reynolds, Harvey Rosenthal, Michael Weber.

The Past Masters Bonus Section features Gene Maze, Frank Thompson, Michael Skinner, Paul Swinford and Roger Klause.

A blow by blow account of the routines is beyond the scope of this overview and would not be overly productive. Even it was possible, just reading a few effect-descriptions would prove overwhelming.

There are some moves, but itís not all sleights. Bob King makes good use of a thick card in an ace cutting routine and Steve Dusheck offers an interesting take on the Svengali deck. Hardly cutting edge card wizardry, some might think, have a look and have a rethink. But if you do want a workout, try Stevensí Aces, by Steve Ehlers. Less exhausting is a Michael Skinner ace production which makes subtle use of Vernonís Cold Deck Cut.

Somewhere in between is an idea of Harry Lorayneís, which is very good, as we might expect, but the real bonuses are descriptions of the Lorayne Spread Control and the Lorayne Force. Hardly new moves, but itís surprising (or perhaps not) how many people arenít familiar with them. Even folk with Harryís books on their shelves. Iíve seen Ricky Jay use the Spread Control in the long ago (likely he still uses it) and according to Mister Lorayne (in Apocalypse) the move fooled John Scarne. He thought it was the Zingone Spread, which is something else altogether.

Suffice to say that Card Magic USA is a varied mix. I nearly said eclectic, but thatís a word thatís been flogged to death. But it would fit here! I like it, but then I like cards, which for some is proof of some sort brain-sickness. What do they know. Well done Peter. And well done to the US Cardmanics. Check it now, while youíre still logged on.


© A E Smith, January 2011