I don’t have an extensive collection, but I probably have more books than most magicians in the Philippines.
I feel lucky, because not many magicians in the Philippines can afford to have a collection, let alone buy books. Also, and this is the sad part, not many of them understand that buying books is a good investment.
Some of the books I own are newly bought, while some were acquired a long time ago, when I was still starting out in magic.
In my opinion, the gem of the gems in my collection is The .
The way I acquired it displayed my grit and determination when it came to expanding my knowledge in magic, so let me tell you how the book ended up in my possession.
I bought it in a small store in Cebu City that sold comics, Liwayway and Bisaya magazines. It lay inside a glass cabinet among other paperbacks, with no one giving it a second glance.
I was then in college. I plunked down my month’s allowance on this book and lived like a pauper and hunger-striker for one month.
I didn’t mind being reduced to indigent status. The book taught me the Chinese Linking Rings and the Ring on Stick routine that Indian shamans performed on the streets of Calcutta long before David Blaine burst into the scene. I’ve not seen today any magician doing the trick anymore. That reminds me to resurrect the trick from my cabinet, especially after discovering that Bob Cassidy has used this trick in his shows for corporate audiences.
Spend time and money tracking The Amateur Magician’s Handbook at local bookstores and even at used-book stores like SALE and Chapters and Pages. Or buy it online from Amazon.com. The time and money you will spend hunting this book down could be a good investment, depending of course on how you use the book to develop your knowledge and skills in magic.
I am aware that the trend today is to learn magic from instructional DVDs. Some even learn moves and tricks on YouTube. While I have no doubt people can learn from these media, I believe that one can learn better the psychology of conjuring and the art of performing magic by reading books than by watching videos.
This is not to say that you abandon learning magic from instructional videos. What I’m suggesting is that you throw in your study mix some written materials, especially such gems as The Amateur Magician’s Handbook.
If you have no idea what this book is all about, read a review from the Genii Online Forum. Reviewer Dustin Stinett has written everything you need to know about the The Amateur Magician’s Handbook. Then go track the book and buy it.
It costs a lot less than one instructional DVD, yet it offers a lot more knowledge than most resources.
Don’t let the word “Amateur” in the title turn you off. Believe me, the book is chockfull of lessons that serious hobbyists, advance students of magic, and even professional performers, will find helpful and useful.