Simple Effects

After Hours Magic: A Book of Al Thatcher Card Magic

Encyclopedia of Card Tricks

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BEFORE explaining some of the special tricks that have been devised for the use of this pack and to enable the reader to become used to the proper handling of the pack, some of the simpler feats will be described first.

1. Show the cards all different by ruffling them, riffle shuffle and make a series of cuts each time showing a different card on the face of the right-hand portion. Invite a spectator to insert his forefinger-tip at any point he desires. Let him remove the card, note it and you read his mind by naming the card. Casually show the bottom card of those in your right hand, that is the cards above the one he removed and also the top card of the portion in your left hand.

2. Have the card replaced in the same position and drop the right-hand portion on top. Square the pack and cut several times to make the impression that the card is lost in the pack. Announce that you will place the cards, one by one, face down on the table and invite the spectator to call 'Stop' at any time he wishes. Seeing that cutting the cards has left one of the shorts on the top, it follows that you have only to stop on any odd number to have a duplicate of the selected card in your hand. If, however, the spectator calls on an even card simply place it on top of the cards already on the table and say, 'And the very next card will be your card.' Turn the next card and show it, then place it on top of the pile on the table, pick up the pile, being careful not to expose the bottom card, and place it on top of the remainder in your left hand.

3. Hand the top card, the one already chosen and ask the spectator to place the tip of his forefinger on its back and hold it there for a few seconds, then placing your left hand with the pack behind your back, you take the card in your right hand and say you will push it into the pack behind your back so that no one can possibly know just what position it will occupy. Pretend to do this but simply put the card on the top of the pack. Bring the pack forward and again show that every card is different by making a series of cuts. Then ruffle the cards inviting the spectator to insert his finger-tip anywhere he likes. He does this and you lift off the portion above his finger, while he names the card (you have forgotten what it was?). Ask him to draw out the card and turn it overhand he finds it's his card. Again show that the card preceding it and the card following it are quite different cards.

4. The above effects may very well follow one another but, of course, you cannot keep on using the same forced card indefinitely.

A pretended prediction trick can be easily worked with the Svengali pack. After showing the cards all different and riffle shuffling the pack, you write the name of the force card on a slip of paper, fold it, and hand it to a spectator to hold. Have a spectator select a card as above with his finger-tip, or a knife blade, as you ruffle the cards, or by his making a simple cut. Lay the card face down on the table, have the spectator read your prediction then let him turn the card over.

5. Naturally, the use of this pack makes a sure-fire force. It can be used to force two cards by having two sets of thirteen similar cards instead of the usual twenty-six. However, you should be prepared to make a switch to an unprepared pack after the force. Various methods for effecting this will be explained here since they are indispensable if you wish to do a series of tricks with Svengali packs. It is hardly necessary to point out that the back patterns of all the packs must be the same.

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