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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Books, Pamphlets & Lecture Notes » » Books of Wonder (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Daren
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Can anyone give me a honest review of the these 2 volumes.
emyers99
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Columbus, Ohio
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I'm sure I'll take a ton of heat for this but here goes. I have them and have read them, and in my oppinion, if you like theory or are related to Bob Vila, buy the books.

In 20 years of doing magic, I have realized two things: 1)the only theory that matters is mine, and 2)I can't make a darn thing. Hence of the 40 or so books I have, the Books of Wonder are near the bottom of my list.

The books are well written and Tommy Wonder is a fabulous magician, without a doubt. The majority of the tricks in the book are great but not practical in my oppinion.

Take this oppinion for what it's worth. I'm a lawyer by day and do between 100 and 125 shows per year. I look for practicality more that philosophy. I need material that is commercial, practical and that can make me money. To me, these books do not fit the bill.
Pavlo
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Poland
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What about his new set of videos? Any improvement on the classic stuff from The Books Of Wonder?
andre combrinck
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The videos seem to contain most of the material in the books.Buy the books you won't be sorry.The theory alone is excellent.
Andre
ajcombri@telkomsa.net
MarkFarrar
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Tommy's thoughts on various aspects of magic are what made these books for me - the tricks are great, but they are his and I cannot really see many other magicians doing them (and certainly not doing them justice). However, they do demonstrate his painstaking approach to his magic and routining and the lengths to which he will go to achieve his desired effects.
Mark S. Farrar

Email: [email]MarkFarrar@TheMagicCircle.co.uk[/email]
Web: www.MagicSquaresBook.com, www.RandMPublishing.com, www.TheDailyGoalMachine.com, www.ParvoBuster.com
saturnin
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Having both books, my comments are that the essays are very good (to me this was the main strength of these books).

But unfortunately, most (not all) of the routines in these 2 volumes are not for 98% of the magicians out there, since Mr Wonder is half-magician and half-crazy scientist/inventor!!! (example; vanishing bird-cage, Ring watch & wallet, etc...)

But on the other hand, you can learn his 2 seconds card-fold, his card in box, etc...

So there is probably better books out there if your main goal is to add routines to your repertoire.

Ronnie Lemieux
Montreal
Canada
There is no road to happiness,

happiness is the road!
Lord Of The Horses
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I don't know if Mr. Wonder is half magician and half "crazy" inventor but for sure, after having read his books I bought the L&L videos and I'm amazed by his technical skills and stage presence.

His books (and his videos) have my vote! They are, with the Osterlind videos, some of the best things I bought lately.
Then you'll rise right before my eyes, on wings that fill the sky, like a phoenix rising!
andre combrinck
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I agree with you,Lord of the Horses,and not only on Tommy Wonder.The Osterlind videos are excellent.
Andre
ajcombri@telkomsa.net

I watched the video again today and while looking at the explaination of the Cups and Balls, and knowing what was to come, he still baffled me with his loads.
Man, Tommy Wonder is brilliant!
Andre
ajcombri@telkomsa.net
jasonchr
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I just picked up the volume one of The Books of Wonder and was very impressed. The theory, of course, is very thought-provoking. The effects, however, are very good as well. While there are many things that would be difficult to put together, there are quite a few effects that I am considering adding to my repertoire that would be very practical for walk-around or strolling magic. This book was definitely the best of both worlds for me - excellent theory and excellent effects...

Jason
The aspirant should acquire the resolve to explore and expand his talents to the best of his ability. With a thorough commitment to quality comes a sense of accomplishment and unique satisfaction.

John Carney
Croft
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Toronto, Canada
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I picked up Volume 1 of The Books of Wonder a few years ago and was quite disappointed. I wasn't overly impressed with the theoretical essays, and wasn't crazy about the effects (and have to agree with others that they are "gaffed out the wazoo"). If you're interested in these books check out the Collected Wisdom discussion on Magic Talk.
Erik Anderson
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Des Moines, Iowa
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If you are looking a new routine or a clever move, pass The Books of Wonder by. They are not (nor were they ever intended) for you.

On the other hand, if your bookshelf is already full of books with more routines and moves than you are ever going to use, and you are interested in learning something of the 'art' of our craft, The Books of Wonder may well occupy an honored (and much used) place on your bookshelf.

These books are an introduction to different ways of thinking about magic. Much of it I agree with, some of it I don't. But all of it has value, if for no other reason than to thoughtfully challenge your view of why we do what we do the way we do it.

Most magic books tend to be collections of routines and moves with a few of the author's observations and opinions discussed within the teaching of the routine. The Books of Wonder are, to my mind, essays on performance theory that are supported and illustrated by select routines.

They are not for everyone. But I do honestly believe that any performer who approaches them openly and honestly (as a student of our craft), will come away with something of genuine and lasting value far in excess of what one gets from a few new routines.
Erik "Aces" Anderson

"I never let my schooling get in the way of my education." ~ Mark Twain

http://www.acesanderson.com
DJP
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Would these books, provide anything for the mentalist?

Dave
David
saturnin
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Dave wrote:
"Would these books, provide anything for the mentalist? "

Not really.

Ronnie Lemieux
Montreal
Canada
There is no road to happiness,

happiness is the road!
Lord Of The Horses
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For the mentalist who likes to think and adapt methods to his working, YES.

I did.
Then you'll rise right before my eyes, on wings that fill the sky, like a phoenix rising!
DJP
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Is the theory directed at the close-up environment or stage?

Likewise, are the effects directed for the close-up environment or stage?

Dave
David
Randy Sager
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Quote:
On 2004-01-24 07:54, Yavid2001 wrote:
Is the theory directed at the close-up environment or stage?

Likewise, are the effects directed for the close-up environment or stage?

Dave


Tommy performes both stage and close up. The books are on both close up and stage magic.

Tommy does both close up and stage so the answer to your question is yes on both counts.
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