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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The spooky, the mysterious...the bizarre! » » The Bigger Book of BOO! -- A Review (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Odes Odhner
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I had the pleasure of meeting Lary Kuehn over coffin nails outside the lobby at the November 2006 Gathering of the ICBM. I also had the redoubled pleasure of watching his alter ego T. Everett Bookings, III (a/k/a The Traveler) perform at his chosen vocation of ghost hunting. It is one of my best memories from that weekend, without a doubt. Even in a crowded, noisy hospitality suite with an audience decidedly “in the know,” the strength of his routine, and his easy-going skill at presenting it, were clear.

Place it in an intimate setting before a lay audience?

I don’t even need to surmise, as the working history of Lary’s material speaks volumes for itself.

Indeed, this is what “The Bigger Book of BOO!” offers: the very audience-tested material which made the Traveler’s “Ghost Hunt Dinners” a commercial success and—in my personal opinion—just plain entertaining on any level. And that’s just one course in this veritable feast. This volume combines in one place all of Lary Kuehn’s published material from the 1980s and early 90s. In addition to the routines, the reader is offered insightful tips, leads and advice—the kind that are crucial to follow through with in order to perform these pieces to their full potentials, and to make sure they connect to the audience on a deep and personal level. And then there are the practical utility devices, gimmicks, gaffs, and methods—all clearly outlined, and many of which the thinking magician could readily expand upon using current materials, methods and technologies. The true joy of it, though, is that you wouldn’t have to, and in most cases probably shouldn’t because it would be needless overkill. The beauty of Lary’s methods is in their simplicity, and ultimately in their delivery. But, if so inclined, the possibility for tweaking and updating his gadgets and gimmicks is definitely there, and the author even suggests a few modern improvements himself. For those who care to read between the lines for such things, herein can also be found the body of one man’s work and love of the craft, and the inspiring proof that with the proper attitude this brand of magic can be so much more than the “armchair pursuit” it is sometimes accused of being.

If you are looking for the newest, shiniest gizmo, or for the 1,002nd way to manipulate and reveal a chosen card (Tarot, or most certainly otherwise), you’re not going to find it in “The Bigger Book of BOO!” The methods are most often neither new nor original, nor does the author—and I salute him—feel any need to claim them to be so, or to over-complicate them just so he can. But make no mistake. There are neat gizmos of all kinds, and unless you’re a diehard sceance performer I’d be surprised if you didn’t come across something new to you within this book, especially if—like me—you are more recently introduced to the umbrella genres of Bizarre, Storytelling, and Sceance Magick.

Here, you’ll find numerous gimmicks and gambits for bells, books, and candles.

Need I say more?

Then how about the book’s centerpiece, the original “Big Book of BOO!” with its round table contributions from Larry Baukin, Darklon, The Traveler, Joseph Fraher, Jim Magus, Adrian Devlyn, Scott Davis, Terry Tyson, as well as the insightful and entertaining “Ye Olde Dictionary of Dark & Arcane Verbage” compiled and contributed by Maskelyn ye Mage.

From 1992’s “Ghost Notebook,” included in its entirety, you’ll find “Melanie’s Miracle Gadget.” I’m going to put together something that will use a Pellet Switch, just because this method is simply too good, too strong, to read and forget about! Seriously, this is a thing of beauty. And then there’s “The Ghost Book” which turns the reader into a ghostly shade of their former self as he or she reads from its cursed pages. This one sounds like a lot of fun, and I’m itching to experiment with it.

There’s stuff for matchbooks, feathers, picture frames—the list goes on and on.

This book is a veritable Key for anybody interested in—or already pursuing—Sceance, Storytelling or Bizarre Magick. Lary’s material should definitely fire your synapses and get your creative juices flowing—it surely does mine. Though it is stated in the book’s introduction, it bears to be repeated: Do not let the simplicity of method deceive you. This is tested material with proven success. I’ve seen it in action, and it’s just entertaining as hell—literally, depending on how far you want to go.

In “The Bigger Book of BOO!” Lary Kuehn, T. Everett Bookings, III and The Traveler offer their work, passion, experience and insight to a new generation of magicians, and again to those who may have missed it the first time around.

Take it, put it to work for you, and make it your own. Nothing, I think, would please the three of them more…

The price is $49.95

and it is available through Lary's website at:

http://www.jewelpro.com/boo/books.html

Who have you sceanced lately?
Dr Spektor
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Eternal Order
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I got the notification that mine was printed up yesterday and sent off - another excellent book to look forward to!
"They are lean and athirst!!!!"
slydini
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I just recieved mine today. It is fantastic!!
fred200
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I got mine a couple of days ago and I'm super happy with the book!! and for the price is a real bargain several of the items in the book spirits on the table,flickers,the key,encounter with the terror ect was sold like individual item's a few years ago for more of the price of this book.
A must have for the seance worker
Clifford the Red
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The Red just got his today...Holy Styx! This is a treasure mine! Make no mistake, this is old school Bizarre with images of letters and other ephemera from greats (like a typical letter from Maskelyn ye Mage) from Bizarre. Thank you, thank you, thank you TEB for doing more than keeping this alive, but burying it in ceremonial vodou earth and resurrecting something even more gloriously bizarre than before. I am a huge advocate of keeping alive the unique qualities of our bizarre genre, and that includes the narrative, short story writing style of describing effects. That is "alive and on the inside" of this book. Like any Bizarre worth its salt, the items contained within these covers, properly applied, can get you disowned, shunned, feared, admired, and excommunicated.

Enter...and be amazed.
"The universe is full of magical things, waiting for our wits to grow sharper." Eden Philpotts
StrangeMagick
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Odes (and other) - Here's a link to my review I placed in the book review area a few weeks ago:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......10&0

This is indeed a treasure which I highly recommend and a bargain at $50.

Dave
Thamiel
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My copy arrived yesterday. I haven't finished it yet, but felt compelled to post anyway...

My aesthetic snobbery kicked in when I opened the package. I turned my nose up at the simple 'perfect binding' and snorted at the layout when I casually flipped the pages. I have never been so wrong about a first impression, and the content in this book kicked my legs out from under me, and I fell face first into a steaming pile of my presuppositions.

As I said, I haven't finished it all, but the material I have read is amazing. I had been looking everywhere for this book (figuratively), I just didn't know what it was called. Descriptions on building seance gaffs (books, candles, and a close-up palette Smile ), and nice story ideas. The Poe seance is well thought out, and something I plan on adapting. It reminded me of something that one bizarre brother might put in a poorly copied booklet, and sell for $35 while telling you the fortune it will earn you. The difference being this effect is one of many in the book, and this seance is portable and practible. You can't go wrong with the price. This book has, to quote Jay Sankey "some really commercial effects"

Thamiel
DR STEVE HOSKINS
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Yes I aggree with the last posters sentiments, - this is a superb little book.
worth its weight in gold. I highly recomend this book.
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