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Here is my review of MagicSeen's Best of British Book, launched at Blackpool Magic Convention.


Best of British by Magicseen Magazine

Price: £20.00 + P+P

Where to buy: From here: http://www.magic.forgecom.info/magbooks.htm

The summary:

Best of British is the new book from Magicseen Magazine, packed full of a variety of magical effects from some of Britain’s top magicians and performers. The book was released at Blackpool Magic Convention 2012, and has just over 140 pages. It is a little bigger than A5 size, and it contains 24 tricks plus a sleights section – which teaches a couple of sleights used in Shaun McCree’s contribution. There is a huge variety of tricks – tricks using rope, cards, billets, paddles, watches, tic – tacs plus mentalism tricks.

The Production Quality:

The production quality of this book is excellent, with the simple layout also being stylish and effective. The cover is very well produced and full of colour, and the greyscale illustrations and internal layout of the book are excellent.

The Tricks:

Due to me mainly being a ‘card guy’, I am not able to review some of the effects in the book in a fair manner. Therefore, I will only review ones that I can do appropriately.

1. Cashpoint – It’s A Killer! by Jasper Blakely – Although I don’t do mentalism, this is really funny and well – routined stage mentalism effect, that all you mind – readers will love. Although a simple effect – a fake PIN number is divined, there is great humour and routining in the effect.

2. You must be Joking! by Chris Congreave – This is really great card routine that requires a simple gaff. In essence, two jokers catch the first selection, this selection jumps from hand to hand, and then turns into their second selection in their hands! You can now produce the first selection from anywhere, if you wish. I really like this a lot, lots of magic in it! I am sure it will be great for strolling performances, I will definitely give this one a whirl. I have already tried it once and it seemed to go down really well!

3. Nailed by Wayne Dobson – This is a really easy to do card stab using a nail and an envelope, and I love how devious and direct the method is. I think this would work really well for close up or something bigger! The effect is that a 6 inch nail stabs through an envelope and one card in the pack – the signed selection!

4. The Satisfaction of Creativity by Matthew J Dowden – This is a really thought provoking essay, and I thought the information and ideas given are superb. I for one really like the idea of creating own material, so I enjoyed this piece from Mr. Dowden.

5. Brainwoven by Peter Duffie – This is an awesome take on the Brainwave plot, with an interesting premise and a great kicker ending. Very nice and simple, and a hard hitter!

6. Reorder by Chris Dugdale – I quite liked this one, however it does contain several tricky sleights, and some things aren’t explained – instead his DVD is advertised. However, if you can do the moves I think that this would play very nicely, and it has an excellent ending – all the cards reorder themselves after lots of shuffling, except for one card – the selection.

7. Approaching the Table by Wayne Fox – I found this information to be GOLD! It is all about how to approach tables, how to introduce yourself and how to get bookings. Great advice is given – an excellent contribution to the book.

8. Diminishing Not Likely! By Paul Gordon – Basically, a really great and commercial effect from Mr. Gordon. A card is selected, and four cards are removed. With comic aspect they are all shown to be the same card (the selection) and then the packet is turned over to actually reveal the four aces! Great for strolling work, simple but effective.

9. Name Power 2 by Paul Hallas – It does require a large set up, but this effect appears to play big! A name is chosen from a large selection of them, and an alphabet deck is placed in a glass. One by one cards melt through to the top of the deck, and they correspond to the name, spelling it out. I like this one a lot, it is very clever and I am sure would play very well.

10. STP by Gary Jones – This is an extremely cheeky Switch, Tear and Peek method, highlighting how clever Gary is. I love how simple, direct and cheeky this is! Great work as always Gary!

11. Flushing Smedley by Simon Lovell – This is a SUPER simple but very effective quickie card effect. A selected card is seen to be an Ace, and then the rest of the royal flush turn face up in the deck. Nice and simple, and pretty good.

12. Don’t Do As I Didn’t by Shaun McCree – This is a nice version of the Do as I Do effect, with a normal pack of cards. Although it is very tricky, it is also very nice and I am sure it will play excellently if you have the chops!

13. TNT by Lee Smith – This is an amazingly simple but visual Torn and Restored effect that appeared on Lee and Gary Jones’ ICANDY DVD. This is so clever and would be excellent for strolling situations. What happens is this – A card with a torn corner is shown to be a prediction, and is placed in your pocket without anyone seeing the face. A selected card has a corner torn off, and the corner is handed to a spectator. The selected and signed card is then seen to be restored, and the prediction card in your pocket is seen to be an exact fit with the handed out corner!


This is on the whole an excellent book, with great production quality and a vast and varied selection of magical theory and effects. It is for a great price, and supports and showcases some of the best magicians and magic to come from Britain.

Highly Recommended.
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