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celebrity
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After reading rave reviews on the Café about the work Atlas Brookings I was curious as to what all the fuss was about.

So I took the plunge and invested in one of his works. His thinking was highly impressive and It was clear from the off that he had invested a lot of time in thinking his material through.

Naturally this wasn't to be my last purchase from him, the second was as equally as impressive as the first and I've adopted many elements of his thinking within my own work.

Keen on hearing a little more about him I made contact, we exchanged emails and shared some thoughts then out of the blue I receive an email from him detailing a routine he has titled "The Crusade".

I was very intrigued and began to work my way through the pages....

Let me say this. I rarely post unless I feel so strongly that an item is worthy of everyone's attention.

"The Crusade" is a true piece of art and I have no hesitation in saying that this will become the go to effect for any mentalist who utilises cards within their work.

Atlas has taken a whole new approach to the "Grail" and the results are highly satisfying. I promised not to spoil all the fun but let me share some thoughts on why this piece is so unique.

There are countless methods for the ACAAN plot yet to date I've never found any in which the mentalist plays an "active role" in facilitating the effect. In this offering the mentalist gets all of the credit for discerning a genuinely thought of card and a genuinely thought of position.

This piece of work is simply stunning and I say this honestly and wholeheartedly from experience. The reaction to this effect is exactly what I would expect of "The Grail" and more.

I could go on all day talking about the conditions of this effect, how fair it is but this effect deserves far more. Although this will be compared by many to the previous efforts in finding "The Grail" this is so much better, this is "The Crusade" and it is beautiful!
As a mentalist you must always ask yourself what if! And throughout your life you should seek to ask and answer this question over and over again, only then will your wildest dreams become a reality!
Martin Pulman
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I have been delighted with everything I've purchased from Mr Brookings. If this lives up to his previous material we could be in for something very special. Fingers crossed!
Mark_Chandaue
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Atlas is a very very clever guy and one of the nicest guys in mentalism. I'm looking forward to hearing more about the crusade.

Mark
paperinick
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The best thing about the ACAAN releases is the themed naming. I love the Crusade idea! For the next ACAAN I propose Foucault's Pendulum. Smile
I do not agree with what you have to say, but I'll defend to the death my right to say "scr*w you" if you persist. [Voltaire Smile]
celebrity
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He is a very nice guy and is a rare talent. Believe me this work will surpass all expectations!

Best Wishes Michael
As a mentalist you must always ask yourself what if! And throughout your life you should seek to ask and answer this question over and over again, only then will your wildest dreams become a reality!
yachanin
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Hi All,

I had the opportunity to review an early draft of "The Crusade" and agree entirely with Celebrity's comments. I've performed The Crusade a number of times and it is a killer. Everything appears above board and totally fair. You can use any deck and you're ready to go. I don't know if this is available now, but I know you'll really enjoy this.

Regards, Steve
"Impossible? Your audience will think so..." ™

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celebrity
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In a bid to keep everything factually correct I must make mention of a key player in this work. Due entirely to my enthusiasm I neglected to mention that this effect is infact the creation of Andrew Brown.

Andrew passed this idea on to Atlas and the pair worked together to finalise this masterpiece.

On that note I'd like to both apologise for not mentioning Andrew in my original post and would also like to congratulate him on this superb piece of mentalism.

I sincerely look forward to hearing more about your work.

Andrew and Atlas you make a great team!

Best Wishes Michael Smile
As a mentalist you must always ask yourself what if! And throughout your life you should seek to ask and answer this question over and over again, only then will your wildest dreams become a reality!
MagicAtlas
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Thanks Michael, Mark, Martin, and Steve. It was surprising to see all the outpouring of support and kindness for my books on this thread!

And thank you for remembering to mention my good friend Andrew Brown. I was just about to make a similar post myself!

I've always thought that two heads are better than one, as that extra perspective lends depth to a creation and I've always found Andrew's perspective direct, ingenious, and refreshing! He is the type that offers up little ideas that are firecrackers just waiting for the fuse to be lit.

I am pleased at the way this collaboration between myself and Andrew has come together, and I am sure that others will be too!

As Michael suggested earlier, this is a sort of relaunch of the ACAAN plot - specifically for a Mind Reader. For those who are curious, the first few pages from the book are below. (Paperinick - this may interest you, in light of your comment about how on Earth these things get their names...)

Best,

Atlas


Imagine it:

The cards rest on the table in front of your first participant, who gingerly takes them up and begins to count down to his secret number - a number that has never been written down, verbalized, or communicated to any other person.

He counts down slowly, card after card, and then, abruptly, stops. He pauses and sets this last card aside. He has never said a word about his number. There is no way that you could have known what it was. He is confident of that.

He slides the card across to the young lady next to him. Her thoughts have been focused on an image - a suit and a value. Again, her choice of card has never been shared. It has never been withdrawn from the pack, never touched and certainly not forced.

She could have been thinking of any card in this deck.

Her hand drifts toward the card on the table. The one separated just now by her boyfriend from the rest of the pack. The one resting at the number that her lover was merely thinking of.

She hesitates.

The deck is their own, they shuffled it before you ever touched it. They called all the shots every step of the way.

Neither participant has ever given any indication what it was that they were thinking of, and neither believes in the ability to read minds... and yet...if the card she was merely thinking of is here, at the number that he was merely thinking of...

As though she is reaching out to touch her own delicate skepticism, her fingers flit tentatively across the card on the table - her card.

And as she reveals its face, she gasps - it is the Queen of Clubs - but it is more than that. It is belief, radiant and beautiful and glorious, a moment of dawning acceptance that will be remembered because it defied all her reason and filled her ideology with doubt.

It is a moment of pure enchantment.

And you made it happen with a borrowed deck of cards that they shuffled before you ever started.
­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­­__________________________________________________________________________

Before we look at anything even remotely to do with methodology, let's first take a moment to examine the origins of this title. This exercise is undertaken in the hope that you will find beauty in its layered complexity and reassure yourself that the same sort of attention to detail and search for perfection in arriving at a title for this book is the standard offered by these authors throughout this document.

Why is this called 'The Crusade: A Mind Reader's ACAAN'?

To many in the magic industry and to card magic enthusiasts especially, the 'Any Card At Any Number' plot is a cherished and well-loved miracle. It's perfect execution is so highly prized and sought after that it has popularly referred to among card enthusiasts as the 'Holy Grail'.

That begs the question - was this title merely a clever play on words? It is true that the Crusades and The Holy Grail are linked in popular lore. But while the association is appealing, there is more at work here than just opportunistic wordplay.

You see, the Holy Grail was the destination, the final prize at the end of these beloved stories of noble knights and daunting expeditions, whether they have their basis in fact or fiction. It bears emphasizing once more – the Grail was the destination.

The merits of the ACAAN effect have been argued back and forth for many years in the magic community.

For some, their appreciation for the effect is akin to that of a fine wine and their devotion to it never wavers.

Others, however, despise the plot and note sourly that the reaction from the audience is frequently less than enthusiastic. One person names a card and the other names a number and lo and behold – they match! It is over so quickly that it often plays as a puzzle rather than as an amazing feat that fills a person with wonder.

The argument rages back and forth, and fruitful and enlightening perspectives have emerged. Some claim that the weaknesses lie in a lack of performance ability. Others argue that the plot is fundamentally unappealing to any demographic but magicians.

The most experienced among us have consistently demonstrated that an individual will fail to recall the workings of a puzzle, but when they are escorted into an experience that fills them with wonder - when you take them on a journey that creates that wonder - they will never forget their sense of amazement or the guide lit their path.

So, in the title 'The Crusade', you have a reminder that what you are presenting is about the journey and not the mythical Holy Grail that is at the end of it. The Crusade was the colloquial term for the period of endeavor and the path to virtue – NOT the destination – which, in many ACAAN plots is arrived at too quickly to have any impact.

One other important point about the title of this book. The root of the word 'Crusade' is the Latin word cruc or crux – meaning cross.

And, of course, a cross is formed at two points of intersection. And what is an intersection but the place where the roads taken by two different travelers on two unique journeys meet?

The moment of meeting is what this effect allows you to create, when the card that one person only thought of intersects at the number another person only thought of – the journey that you created for each of them becomes the destination, and an experience is formed that will create a sense of amazement whose memory will never fade.

To a performer, that is The Holy Grail.

And the path to the Grail is through the Crusade.
Funnybaldbloke
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Well, after reading Atlas' post and loving his previous releases I have to say I'm disappointed at the sound of this.

How could it possibly live up to that beautifully written description?

It can't.

This will be rubbish. Something that won't match the hype. Waste of time.

Ah crap, who am I kidding. It will be brilliant, well thought out, workable and more than worth every penny and I can't wait to find out more.
Tomorrow's bottom of the bill...Today!
cirrus
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Where can I buy this miracle?
magicman29
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Atlas is a top guy and having some of his material already I know this is going to be a gem!

Any release date yet?

Kieran
Martin Pulman
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Well, the prose was a little "purple" and "Oprah-esque" for my tastes, but the effect sounds terrific.

I do wonder if Atlas and Andrew have fully thought through the name of their effect though. The word "crusade" now has EXTREMELY negative connotations among certain communities. We live in strange times and there are some strange folk out there. I'm not sure this is the best time to be launching a new "Crusade"! Smile
MagicAtlas
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Hello everyone,

Kieran, thanks very much for your confidence - it's very kind of you to say!

Funnybaldbloke - I love how you've hedged your bets! You will be right about this one way or the other!

Cirrus and anyone else who is wondering, I have to verify this with Andrew, but we expect to price the book at $27.00 and are aiming for a release date of June 28th. I will verify that date once I receive confirmation from Andrew.


Best,

Atlas
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Atlas,

Not so much a case of hedging my bets as knowing full well you'll be getting a PayPal notification from me sometime around the end of June.

If its half as good, and as useful, as The Prodigal then it's money well spent.

I was once in an episode of Crimewatch but I don't like to talk about it.

Tony
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nique
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Count me in Atlas, this sounds like it's going to be another great release from you.

~ Nique
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pegasus
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I look forward to some non biased reviews on this one.
South Coast. England.
Martin Pulman
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Quote:
On 2013-06-16 03:06, pegasus wrote:
I look forward to some non biased reviews on this one.


I can assure you Pegasus that when I post my review it will be completely unbiased. I am looking forward to this though, as Mr Brookings other work has been top notch.
pegasus
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Therefore, Martin, my purchase rests squarely on your review. Many thanks.
South Coast. England.
Martin Pulman
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Quote:
On 2013-06-16 04:31, pegasus wrote:
Therefore, Martin, my purchase rests squarely on your review. Many thanks.


I'll try not to let you down.
a brown 1968
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Michael : Thank you for your kind words and overview of The Crusade . it has been a pleasure for me to receive emails from Atlas where he has forwarded onto me comments from guys who have been asked to test the effect in the real world under various performing conditionings.

Atlas: for me this has been a wonderful collaboration of my creative ideas and your real world worker insights of performing . Together the effect has been looked at from numerous angles , refined then refined further . Your passion and enthusiasm has taken a few pages of scribbled notes on the premise, principle and scripting to a now fully completed book . Thank you my friend and I look forward to meeting up with you in person when you come and live in England in the near future .

Potential buyers: Atlas has already built up a good reputation for himself and his effects , we are both determined that buyers make an informed decision about purchasing The Crusade . I shall do my best to answer any questions to assist in buyers deciding if the effect is suitable for them .

Best wishes

Andrew
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I have had the privilege of having a peek couple of months back at what now is The Crusade.

As many, I have been a happy customer with Atlas's offerings and he is a creative performer who is meticulous in his releases.

I am not sure if Atlas and Andrew had new ideas to throw in The Crusade since I last read it, but what I read can be summed up as follows:

"a clean routine in which everything makes sense"

I loved Atlas's justification of the title which to me is the main power of this routine. What I really loved is that this routine gives ACAAN a nice frame of reference. I really like this routine and trust me when I say, Atlas has a gift with routining and structure. To me, the effect in itself is a lesson in routining and scripting. To some, this is a bonus; to others, that is the real crusade!

I understand that I am doing nothing more than hyping this effect further, but I think this effect is worth it. Feel free to take my thoughts and words with a grain of salt. Hopefully future purchasers will chime in with their reviews. I will finally say that this routine is workable in the real world!

Congratulations Atlas and Andrew. I am looking forward to the official release of The Crusade.
Mark_Chandaue
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I too have been lucky enough to have a preview of this and I love it. The deck can be borrowed and shuffled, the card and the number are merely thought of and never spoken or written down. In fact you neither know the number or the card untill the spectator has dealt to their number and the card is revealed. There is some procedure to get the card and number selected but it is all completely justified and completely fair. The great thing is the mechanics are very easy, no memory work or mathematics, in fact it's almost self working allowing you to focus entirely on presentation.

The manuscript is very well written as you would expect if you are familiar with Atlas' other books. A lot of time is spent on the presentation and scripting explaining the thinking behind each step. There is far more one can learn from this manuscript than just the effect within its pages. This will certainly be my ACAAN of choice from here on.

Mark
MagicAtlas
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Thanks everyone for your excitement and sharing your thoughts on 'The Crusade'!

Tony, to answer your question - I think that in some respects, this book does for the ACAAN plot what 'The Prodigal' did for BAs. There seem to be a lot of people out there (mind readers especially) who don't like the plot. I think this book will change that for many of them.

Ash, thanks for your review - I am so glad that you were one of the first to explore this effect with us. Your feedback has always been helpful and concise, the readers here owe a good deal of thanks to you as well.

Mark, I'm pleased that you liked the draft - I'd love to hear your experience in performing this. And I completely understand where you are coming from when you say it is your ACAAN of choice now. It is such a comfortable fit for what I do that I feel that way too.

Thanks to those of you who have read the draft and given Andrew and me feedback over the last six months. Your help has been extremely appreciated! And while he hasn't chimed in yet on this thread, I'd like to especially thank Greg Arce. With each of my releases to date, he has been kind enough to share his time and his thoughts with me and this was no exception. I was very pleased when he told me that he'd tried this several times and that it "Plays very well."

In fact, I think the full quote is that it "Plays strong and is very easy to do. A real winner. Congrats!!!"

So, anyway, we appreciate all the excitement surrounding this particular release. I've still got a load of notes to write up regarding additional presentations, and then it will go through a few more proof drafts and we will be done. So, to all those who have read it and enjoyed it - there are still a few more ideas up our sleeves!

Best,

Atlas
aukt
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Any video coming?
takeachance
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I fit the profile when it comes to not getting excited over the ACAAN plot. So many more entertaining presentations than that. However, I really like the writing style here Atlas. Maybe this one will change my mind. The concept of the storyline does intrege me. Looking forward to the release. Being an older member here, I hope there isn't too much mental gymnastics involved.
Stephen Young
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Having read previous works from Atlas, and from the extract posted above, I have to say Thatvhis work is great to read.
Not just for great methods and presentations, which they are, but a real joy to read.

I look forward to seeing what he has done with this popular plot.
If its a s good as his work on BAs then it is sure to be a winner.

Steve
takeachance
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You hit the nail on the head Steve, I really did enjoy reading the extract. I'll be buying on that alone
a brown 1968
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Aukt - I will check with Atlas but the last time we discussed the question of a demonstration video are decision was that there would not be one . This is consistent with his previous releases .

Andy
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Takeachance there are no mental gymnastics involved whatsoever, neither maths or memory work. Method wise you will be hard pushed to find an easier version of this effect. The method allows you to put all your energy into the presentation.

Mark
takeachance
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That's definately sold it to me. Appreciate the info Mark

Neil
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