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It’s the first of February. Pinch your copy of our latest Second Hand Books list and you’ll punch the air in delight. Thousands of books, including rare and out of print titles, for our discerning customers as well as Magic Cafe members and others.

Click the link below to get your copy (left-click to view, right-click to download):

Magick Second Hand Books 2018

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Jim the Amazing (OAP parties a speciality) reclined on the velveteen chaise longue, idly practising his one-hand bottom palm. “Stop that,” said his wife, The Lovely Gladys, “I’m trying to watch Britain’s Got Talent.”

“Britain’s Got Talent?” Jim harrumphed. “Not on this showing. Someone should report them to Trade Descriptions. I reckon if we got our old act together we’d sweep the board.”

With a toss of her curlers Gladys retorted, “Our old act? We’ve not had a booking for that for five years. You’re not getting me in those lurex tights again. And the ostrich feathers don’t half tickle. Why don’t you work on a new act instead of sitting there dreaming of past glories at the Attercliffe Non-Political. You could shave your head, grow a beard and do a mental act. Or how about close-up magic? I hear there’s money in that these days.”

Jim recoiled, cut to the quick by such unwarranted assertions. “I’m cut to the quick by your unwarranted assertions, Glad,” he replied. “I could still hop a table with the best of them if I wanted to. Does this mean nothing to you?” he said with an expansive guesture towards a yellowing diploma on the wall, scattering caution and a handful of bent Bicycles to the wind.

Replacing the antimacasser crumpled by his exertions, Gladys remarked mildly, “Runner-up in the Brimington and Stavely All-Comers International Close-Up Competition…” she paused theatrically, “1978. I still think we need a new act. At least most magic acts these days have made it into the ’80s, or even the early ’90s. You’re still stuck in the mid ’70s.”

“But that’ll mean research, and practice, and buying new stuff. And where am I going to find a trustworthy, intelligent, patient, knowledgeable magic dealer with a wide range of new and second-hand magic at incredibly keen prices?” said Jim thoughtfully, stroking his stubble.

“Magick in Sheffield, of course,” replied Gladys. “Russell’s been in business over 40 years.”

“Good grief,” Jim expostulated, “He certainly must be patient… 40 years, eh. Not sure about intelligent though.”

“And he’s starting up a brand new mailing list with all the latest news and special offers. Let’s get our name down now!” said Gladys, grasping Jim’s laptop.

Released a few weeks ago and now almost sold out, Devil in Disguise 2 is limited to 250 copies worldwide. I have managed to obtain a very limited supply of the remaining copies. These are available now at £160, post free.

“This is the project that I’ve always wanted to capture and I am happy to say that I have! It took more than twelve months but we got there in the end. I’ve been very quiet on the details so apologies for the radio silence to all that have messaged me about this project.” – Peter Turner

WHAT IS “DEVIL IN DISGUISE 2?”

Devil in Disguise 2 is a hand-engraved memory stick, with a wax stamped and signed tag, on the reverse of which is inscribed a password which allows you to access the video content.

On the stick, you will get sixteen solid routines and brand new principles, in-depth discussions and explanations with guest appearances from Michael Murray, Fraser Parker, Mark Chandaue and Steve Wood. All material is filmed in crisp HD (no regional issues), with added security to protect your investment.

A PEEK AT SOME OF THE CONTENTS…

A Kick to the Teeth: You place a prediction on display ahead of time. Four participants (can be more or less) think of a random word as a team. The prediction is shown to match 100%… And the kicker? It just so happens the participants played a bigger role than they could ever have known. When you take the first letter of each of their names it spells the exact word they thought of!

Unnamed: You start with a simple display of thought reading using cards but end up diving too deeply into the participant’s mind revealing ANY merely thought of piece of information (drawing/name, etc.). No one-ahead and no strange process – this is psycomechanical (you’ll understand why it’s called that when you see this).

Try to Hypnotise Me: You place a piece of card with a number on it face down and tell the audience that the card will be important in a moment. A participant thinks of a random four-digit number — there is no way that the number could match the one that you wrote before the participant ever thought of a number… But that doesn’t matter; you talk about mind control and how you can replace ANY thought to match yours.

You start by erasing the numbers from the participant’s mind. After a few seconds the participant cannot say or remember the numbers! Then you show the group what was written at the start (without the participant seeing) and propose to implant those numbers into the participant’s mind, proving that you can replace any given thought. After talking to the participant openly for a second (not whispered or covertly) you ask the participant what numbers are in their head — much to the surprise of everyone the participant says the numbers that were written long before the performance.

Variant #2: A voodoo variation (with a doll) of the above presentation where you literally control the participant’s actions. Another “Psychomechanical” piece of chicanery,

To Name a Place: Peter’s take on the classic name/place routine with his updated handling of the one-ahead principle, bringing touches and techniques that take it to a new level. Oh, and the participant never writes anything down, making it slick and streamlined. And as a kicker, you can also reveal what the participant changed their mind from (without one-ahead)!

Time for a Date? Another classic technique presented in a way that is new fresh and interesting. This will make you smile like crazy. This enables you to reveal a participant’s date of birth, playing card, any object or item from a list, pin code. Imagine being sat at dinner and asking someone to open the menu, think of any meal on there and being able to reveal it in seconds. And guess what – YOU ASK THE PARTICIPANT NO QUESTIONS. This is mechanical.

Pigs on Steroids: A principle to take “Piggybacking” to new levels. Subtleties, touches and performance ideas with two routines that are simple, quick but extremely powerful.

Countdown/Phantom Book Test (Plus): The participant thinks of a word from an imaginary dictionary and you have predicted it in advance. No obscure process and the method is over in one sentence – meaning that you are free to present this the way that you choose. Alternative presentations with an in-depth discussion of a clever multiple out system most of you will have on your person as you are reading this.

Missing in Action (Plus): Four participants each think of a random single digit to generate, as a group, a random pin code. You can reveal the pin code with no fishing!

Variant #2: You ask the participant to think of random digits from their bank card (without ever removing it) and you are able to reveal them.

At the time of writing I have just two copies left. Let me know if you’d like one.

New stock now in: Pantheon by Chris Philpott. An incredible package of classic mentalism supercharged with The 100th Monkey Principle!

24 Effects, 3 DVDs, 12 Postcards, 9 full performances, over 500 JPGs and a 220-page eBook! Effects for close-up and stage performance – most are easy-to-perform miracles!

“I love this! The new directions in which Chris has taken the 100th Monkey principle are brilliant. This is very strong, easy-to-do mentalism that allows the performer to concentrate on performance. While Chris respects the classic plots of mentalism, he pushes the limits and methods farther, adding another layer of mystery and making them cleaner and more direct. This is a valuable addition to any mentalist’s arsenal.” – Banachek

“Like a breath of fresh air, this principle’s application to many of our classics makes everything new again.” – Paul Vigil

“Chris Philpott has taken some classic mentalism plots and made them even better. Not only in method, but in the effect they have on your audiences.” – Jon Armstrong

“This is incredible! You are crazy insane putting out all these ideas. So good…” – Ran Pink

“Chris Philpott created a whole new area of mentalism with the 100th Monkey and he owns it! Chris lives for his wonderful new principle and he is always creating new effects and ideas that are straightforward and mind-boggling. Pantheon is the latest, biggest, and best to date. You will find endless ideas that have been carefully developed for all areas of classic mentalism. (The Mental Epic idea is one of my favorites!). There are gimmicks for close-up and stage and for any type of mentalism you may perform. Because the 100th Monkey principle is so well hidden within these clever routines, you never have to worry about someone discovering the general principle. This is top-notch stuff for professional workers. You can’t go wrong with this mammoth package. Get this!” – Richard Osterlind

Effects include:

Mental Epic
Twelve different versions featuring classic plots like Let’s Make a Movie, Dream Vacation, and Dream Date. But in these versions, there is no need for suspicious-looking boards – the predictions are written on ungimmicked paper or white boards and covered with clearly-labeled cards. Once you place them down, you never touch them again – a spectator handles them after that – the cards switch themselves!

Drawing Duplication
Five different, super-clean versions of this classic mentalist effect. In one, you show them a poster with 44 different objects to draw and they think of any one – and yet you know exactly what they will draw!

Bank Night
You display envelopes clearly labeled 1 to 5 – and yet you can force each of five spectators to choose any envelope you want! An invaluable utility that can be used for many other effects.

The Chair Test
Three separate 100th Monkey gimmicks that can be used in any Chair Test you do now, plus a full show-stopping routine (which solves the sight-line issues with the effect).

Billets
After a spectator secretly writes down a first name, you not only name the person they are thinking of, but reveal detailed information about who they are!

Monkeys Ahoy
Based on Luke Jermay‘s Touching on Hoy, three spectators think of two spices, sports and shapes – and you are able to divine each thought accurately with no questions and nothing written down!

The Celebrity Baby Gag
You show a spectator a poster with dozens of celebrities and they think of any one – and you know exactly which celebrity they are thinking of! No pre-show or stooges.

Memory Erasure
Five different effects where you take away someone’s memory. Create a perfect assassin who has no recollection of the murder he has committed! Wipe away a person’s anxiety with a calming spell. There is even a version for the corporate magician in which a spectator misinterprets customer feedback.

Book Tests
This includes effects that make it possible for one spectator to read another’s mind by seeing a word in a word-find puzzle.

Psychological Forces
Makes popular psychological forces seem fairer and more impossible.

Plus, much more!

Updates, extra cards and bonus effects for those who register, including:

Q and A
Musical Mind Reading Force Poster
Headline Prediction

Thanks to Steve Valentine, Aiden Sinclair, Rob Gould, Christine Barger, Michael Rangel, Joe Skilton and Leeman Parker for performing in this video and to The Magic Castle for allowing us to film there.

Thanks also to Max Maven, Finn Jon, Luke Jermay and Millard Longman for allowing me to use their methods and effects on this release.

“The first time I saw Chris Philpott’s 100 monkeys I didn’t believe it – it’s such a strong effect. But after I tried for a few times in front of real people, it became something that I use in every show that I do. The new DVD has so many variations and effects that are very clever and workable. This is an A1 product. I am very excited!” – Lior Manor

“It is VERY rare when we add any marketed effect to our shows. These new uses for this amazing principle are so great and wide open to creative presentations that I’m having a hard time deciding what MIRACLES I’m going to create next. I say that in plural because the ideas flow faster than I can write them down; there are at least 1000 Monkeys here! A tool beyond compare for the professional Wonder-Maker!” – Joe Givan, FISM Champion

“If Chris Philpott was digging in the ground, by now he’d be more than halfway to China. Fortunately, he’s been digging further into the 100th Monkey principle, with bountiful results. So, he gets to stay home, and we get to enjoy the results. In short: You’ll dig this!” – Max Maven

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Two deliveries today: six large boxes containing some great books, plus some fine items in carved wood, copper and brass. Pictures will follow, And there are two more boxes of books due tomorrow!

If you could see you way to calling in and making a few purchases as soon as possible that would be great. June is complaining that we’re running out of space.

Eva is a new series of playing cards inspired by the story of the Four First Women. It was printed by USPCC and features an experimental letterpress tuck box, numbered custom seal (1-1999). The cards have metallic ink, the courts are women and the deck includes an extra joker. Meroni suggests these decks are for mature audiences as they include some nudity.

Each suit represents one of the first four women of different cultures. All the court cards are the same first woman, and Jack, Queen and King tell a chronological evolution of the character. The Aces are the last part of the story, the epilogue. The Jokers symbolise the relation between the first women and their men. There is also a tiny graphic on the card edges, different for every suit, that tells a little story.

Pandora, the Curious Betrayer (Spades)

Eva_pandora

You are my gift to mankind, and this box is my gift to you. Don’t open it for any reason, or you’ll condemn all of humanity.

Pandora was the first human woman, created by Hephaestus and Athena on the instruction of Zeus. She was a punishment to humanity for Prometheus’ theft of the secret of fire.

She’s the young “Gift of Zeus” when she is a Jack and she’ll become the “Traitor of Humanity” in her King form. The Queen form is the “Curious Betrayer”: Pandora, seduced by the Zeus’s Forbidden Box (or jar, pithos), decided to open it, condemning all humanity.

The Ace represents the open Forbidden Box, with the Ace itself being the Evil that Pandora unleashed. There was also Hope in the Forbidden Box, but Pandora closed the lid and trapped it inside. Why did Pandora decide to keep Hope inside the Box? There are many theories about this, but I’m reminded of the famous quote by Friedrich Nietzsche: “Hope is the worst of evils, for it prolongs the torment of men.”

If you’re wondering why there is a Snake and an Apple, it’s because you could think of Pandora as a reflection of Eve – opening the Forbidden Box is like eating the Apple of Knowledge.

Lilith, the First Rebel (Diamonds)

Eva_lilith

I was created from the same dirt as the first man. He wanted to dominate me and we fought. I left him and Eden, and I found an Angel.

Lilith is, in some cultures, the real first woman. She was made from the same earth as Adam. The first man wanted to dominate her, so she grew wings and flew away from Eden. Then she coupled with a fallen angel.

The Diamonds court cards represent the evolution of Lilith from the first woman to the First Rebel. In the Jack of Diamonds, Lilith is just created: the “True First Woman”. She’s completely unaware about everything, and her only purpose is to be Adam’s wife.

Adam tries to enslave Lilith – represented in the “The Prisoner Queen”, the Queen of Diamonds. In this card, Lilith is in chains, angry, and she’s ready to fight back against Adam.

Lilith becomes the “First Rebel” on the King of Diamonds. She is full of anger towards Adam and men. She decides to leave him and Eden forever, with her love, Samael – an angel.

Pyrrha, the Mother of the World (Clubs)

Eva_pirra

Pyrrha was the daughter of Pandora. She’s not a first woman, since her mother was the first, but she and her husband, Deucalion, were the only survivors of the Great Flood sent by Zeus to end the Bronze Age. Prometheus warned Pyrrha about the deluge, telling Deucalion to build an Ark for himself and his wife, thus Prometheus saved mankind for the second time.

Pyrrha was the daughter of Pandora and Epimetheus, Prometheus’s brother. She is married to Deucalion, the son of Prometheus. In the Greek myth, it was Deucalion who was told about the great deluge by his father, but in Giovannie’s version, Prometheus (in his Snake form) is telling that to a young Pyrrha. The “Annunciation” is illustrated in the Jack of Clubs.

The Queen of Clubs is “The Queen of the Deluge”. Pyrrha is on the Ark, watching the endless rain sent by Zeus. Her hair is longer, and she grieves for the destiny of the world. She will became the “Mother of the World” years later, as shown in the King of Clubs:

Pyrrha grows older, she’s a mature woman now. The Deluge is over and she and Deucalion are the only survivors. They ask the Oracle of Themis how to repopulate the world, and they are told to “Throw the bones of the Mother over your shoulder.” At first Pyrrha is distraught at the idea of desecrating her mother’s honor by digging up her bones, but Deucalion correctly reasons that the “mother” is Gaia, the Earth, and the bones are rocks.

In the Ace of Clubs, she’s throwing rocks behind her. Both Pyrrha and Deucalion throw a stone over their shoulder – Pyrrha’s turning into a woman, Deucalion’s turning into a man. Once the land has been repopulated with humans, mother earth follows suit and begins to produce all other forms of life.

A little trivia – Pyrrha had three daughters from Deucalion. She called one “Pandora II”, after her mother.

Eva, the Lover (Hearts)

Eva_Eve

Eva (Eve) loves knowledge, freedom and life, and her partner Adam. She must taste the forbidden fruit, although the price she and humanity must pay will be high.

Eve is the main character – she shares a lot in common with the other women. She is curious like Pandora, rebellious like Lilith and motherly like Pyrrha. Giovanni decided to call her “The Lover” because he believes that she did what she did because she was in love – with Adam, with knowledge, but more than anything – with freedom.

Eve is “The First Lover” in her Jack of Hearts form. She has just been created from Adam’s rib, and she is frightened and unaware. Her purpose, like Lilith, is to be Adam’s wife – but this time things are different, since between Adam and Eve there is true love. Adam learns what it means to love and to treat his partner accordingly.

Eve grows to become beautiful and clever. Although she is happy in Eden’s “golden cage” she feels she is missing something – she is hungry for true knowledge. In her Queen form, Eve is “The Temptress”. Prometheus, in the form of a Snake, reveals to her that all Knowledge is hidden in the Apple. She persuades Adam to follow her – they know they will be punished but they decide to eat the Apple of Knowledge anyway.

After eating the Apple, Adam and Eve are banned from Eden forever. They lose their immortality and start to feel hunger and pain. But their eyes are finally opened. They become human. In her King form, Eve is mortal. She has become the “Queen of the World”, since she was the very first female on Earth. Despite humanity’s state of Original Sin, resulting from her rebellion in Eden, and the pain she suffered, she’s proud to be an aware human being.

The relation between Eve and the other first Women

Both Pandora and Eve did something forbidden, and by doing so they doomed all humanity. Both of them love Knowledge and are curious to know what the Supreme Powers wish to keep hidden.

Pyrrha and Eve populated the Earth once. Both are the mothers of humanity. Pyrrha used ‘Gaia’s Bones’ thrown behind her, Eve physically gave birth to the first men.

Eve chose to be at Adam’s side, but it is clear that she shares the same rebellious nature as Lilith.

Prometheus, the Snake

The Snake, Prometheus, represents the voice of freedom and rebellion as expressed by the first women and by humanity as a whole. He inspired Eve to eat the Apple of Knowledge, as well as convincing Pandora to open her Box. He told Pyrrha about the great deluge and he embraced Lilith when she flew away from the Garden of Eden. He’s both a positive and a negative figure.

Dedalo

Dedalo is strongly inspired by Greek mythology and labyrinths. There are three decks in the series:

Dedalo_3

     Dedalo Alpha, aqua foil on blue Stardust Paper
     Dedalo Apeiron (Limited Edition), blue and gold foil on black Stardust Paper
     Dedalo Omega, gold foil on red Stardust Paper

All version have fully illustrated courts, Aces and Jokers, custom pips, different faces and backs, and are supplied in foiled tuck boxes. Every deck includes an extra court card that represent a God of Olympus.

Dedalo tells the story of many characters of the Ancient Greece. The Minotaur Asterion, the dark hero Theseus, the beautiful Ariadne and, of course, Dedalo, the genius who built the Labyrinth, the main location of the story. In Italian, Dedalo is a synonym of “Labyrinth”. The deck is high-detailed, full of hidden meanings and with accurate references to Mythology.

Dedalo Alpha and Dedalo Omega tells the past and the future of the same story. Dedalo Alpha show the part when the Minotaur and Theseus haven’t fought yet, Ariadne is going to help Theseus with her red thread, and Icarus and King Aegeus are alive. In Dedalo Omega, Theseus has defeated the Minotaur and abandoned Ariadne. King Minos is angry with Dedalo and has imprisoned him and his family in the labyrinth. Dedalo manages to fly away on wings made from wax, but his son, Icarus, flies too high and his wings are melted by the Sun, Helios. Aegeus thinks Theseus was killed by the Minotaur, so he’s committing suicide.

The Gods are different in each Dedalo Deck. In Dedalo Alpha you have Hermes (Jack of Spades), Aphrodite (Queen of Spades) and Poseidon (King of Spades), plus an extra Jack of Spades (Apollo). In Dedalo Omega you find Dionysus (Jack of Spades), Athena (Queen of Spades) and Helios (King of Spades), plus an extra Queen of Spades (Artemis). In Dedalo Apeiron you have Ares (Jack of Spades), Hera (Queen of Spades) and Zeus (King of Spades), plus an extra King of Spades (Hades).

I’ll look at the stories behind some of the other Giovanni Meroni decks in future blog posts.

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