|Welcome to Little Egypt Magic's Book Store. It is here that you can become better acquainted with the books, notes, monographs, and CDs that encompass currently available instances of the kind of card magic (and other magical thinking) that we like to call "Little Egypt" card magic. See details below for easy ordering information. If you have any questions about the materials, ordering info, etc., please contact the Book Store's knowledgeable, responsive, and usually sober Proprietor.|
We proudly announce our newest product, from H&R Magic Books ...
230 pages of the world's scariest magic tricks!
Steve Bryant grew up on the drive-in horror movies of the 1950s, on the gothic cartoons of Charles Addams, and on the ghost stories that he and his friends used to tell on dark bus rides to high school football games. If a boy such as this grew up to do card tricks, what would he do? Here in 230 haunted pages lie the answers: part home spook shows developed for his children's friends and their parents, part ghoulish Halloween extravaganzas developed for adult performance in a seedy river town bar. If you've ever wanted to host a seance, put on a midnight ghost show, or haunt a house, this is the book for you.
A brief look at the contents ...
Introduction: Invitation to a Ghost Show. A review of fifty years on the dark side of magic.
Chapter 1: Haunted Deck. Thirteen scary card tricks. If you have access to the October 2008 issue of MUM, one of them appears there.
Chapter 2: Future Shocks. Two spooky approaches to telling fortunes, quite accurately. Be warned: not all futures are rosy.
Chapter 3: Parlor Tricks. Six parlor tricks, including a spirit slate routine that is the eeriest item in this or any book. No card tricks in this chapter.
Chapter 4: Apparitions. Four ghost materializations, a dark "Pseudo Psychometry," and an in-depth look at Nelson's Phantom Ghost Projector.
Chapter 5: Cabarets de la Mort. Two spirit cabinet routines, one "normal" and one titled "The World's Sexiest Spirit Cabinet Routine." Fun to do!
Chapter 6: Grand Illusions. Ten more stand-up items. Guaranteed screams.
Chapter 7: The Others. Sixteen spooky takes on tricks belonging to others. Some you have to go to the original source, some are complete in this book.
Chapter 8: Let's Put on a (Ghost) Show. Sample programs based on the material in the first seven chapters.
Addendum: The Black Arts Book List. A list of recommended reading.
The book that started it all.
Hardbound with dust jacket, 230 pages. Only $45.
Review by Jamy Ian Swiss in his "Light from the Lamp" Column, Genii, March 2009:
STEVE BRYANT WILL BE FAMILIAR to well-read magicians who know of him through his "Little Egypt" writings, including his now-defunct e-zine, Little Egypt Gazette, his current self-described "erratically updated" Little Egypt Magic website, and books including his Little Egypt Book of Numbers (which one major dealer advertised with the accompanying caveat: "Please do not purchase this book if you are easily offended by adult themes and language"). As to all this talk of "Little Egypt," the term stems from the fact that Mr. Bryant, who makes his home in Bloomington, Indiana, has long and often performed in parts of southern Illinois known collectively as Little Egypt, thanks to towns with names like Cairo, Karnak, and Thebes.
Mr. Bryant explains in the introduction to his new book that he is an experienced longtime amateur magician, and carefully articulates his commitment to that perspective. He refers to a statement I often heard Albert Goshman make, that "Amateurs perform new magic for old audiences, and professionals perform old magic for new audiences." Goshman's point was that this is how professionals polish material, and that amateurs rarely achieve similar mastery because they are always moving on to something new or the latest dealer item. Mr. Bryant acknowledges the special challenges of performing for repeat audiences, but also considers some of the distinct pluses of such opportunities, and presents his material for the reader's consideration with these caveats clearly present.
The author grew up in the sway of Famous Monsters of Filmland magazine (a childhood passion I shared), and in thrall to the advertising of (Robert) Nelson Enterprises, which cleverly decorates this charming book. Mr. Bryant is a devotee of card magic--his routines often use a card trick as a foundation or strategy to put across some other magical prop or idea--but he is equally if not more so in love with the dark and spooky. His Book of Ghosts collects half a lifetime of material that he has created for Halloween parties, haunted houses, spook shows, seances, kids' parties, and even adult barroom audiences. What's remarkable is that for such a colorful and diverse mix of audiences, settings, and contexts, virtually all of it is decidedly entertaining to read--and eminently useful for anyone who shares similar interests.
The first of eight chapters begins with card magic, in which Mr. Bryant ably demonstrates his ability to take a standard card trick and adapt a spooky theme to it. Most if not many of these are rather light-hearted and tongue in cheek--after all, the author often performs for kids. But unlike the often clueless and patronizing norm, Mr. Bryant brings wit, style, and creativity to the task, along with a genuine taste for the occasional outright scare. The book is simply full of terrific ideas, including a spirit bell with a set of clacking teeth; a version of Don Alan's "Ranch Bird" with a wonderful prop, courtesy of a Sid Fleischman inspiration; a close-up Card Stab based on a little-known idea, buried in print, that IÕve always thought brilliant, but that Mr. Bryant has rendered totally workable; ghostly presentations for standards like "Wild Card," "MacDonald Aces," the "Devano Rising Cards," and J.C. Wagner's "Torn and Restored Card"; the "Brainwave" deck (with a smart three-phase routine); Losander's Floating Table; "Glorpy" (with one of the best titles in the book), and a routine for the "Daylight Seance" (that, believe it or not, doesn't suck). To top it off, Mr. Bryant is also a very capable writer; whether or not you're able to use much of this material, the book is just plain fun to read.
A chapter on parlor-scale material includes "Sealed Message Reading for Children," an inspired idea. A chapter on stage material and illusions includes material that is consistently practical and homemade, but often tastily seasoned by Mr. Bryant's decidedly original sensibilities. Anyone with interests in theatrical seances should consider this as it has a few excellent ideas for ghostly apparitions, including a nice elaboration of Corinda's "Ghost Walk."
No professional should be skeptical of how useful this book might turn out to be, especially if stage performers study Mr. Bryant's approaches to the classic Spirit Cabinet (including an R-rated version), and if close-up workers who wish to incorporate some mentalism elements into their work pay close attention to his "Rainbow House of Chooka Frood," a smart and practical three-phase close-up fortune-telling routine using playing cards. This is not for the high-on-pretense-low-on-ethics PEA crowd. but rather a useful and engaging approach that, if you go in for this sort of thing (and the author addresses some of the attendant pitfalls and necessary considerations) might just turn out to be far more valuable to you than all the bloviating nonsense that currently passes as mentalism literature.
All of this is wrapped up in an exceedingly well-produced package. A few H&R Magic Books' initial publishing ventures were a tad shaky, especially in the production and design side, but this is a stellar effort. The book is not only handsomely produced but the design itself is delightful and engaging throughout. I thoroughly enjoyed The Little Egypt Book of Ghosts--and despite Mr. Bryant's generally light-hearted tone and touch, there is at least one piece in here that is likely to scare the bejabbers out of the biggest meanest toughest guy in the room, if you do it right. And what could be more fun than that?
Review appears courtesy of Genii magazine.
This is the big one, the hardback published by H&R Magic Books.
Steve Bryant's latest book is a collection of routines created primarily for his performance in the nightspots of the "Little Egypt" section of Southern Illinois, where towns bear such names as Cairo, Thebes and Karnak. To play in these challenging venues, the routines must be quick, direct and easy to follow. Most involve off-beat presentations guaranteed to be remembered. None use difficult sleight of hand, relying more on presentational nuances and subtle touches.
As for the tricks themselves, all but one - a version of Milt Kort's Coins Through Table - are card tricks. But these aren't just your Uncle Ed's card routines. They include a dark version of Spectator Cuts the Aces, Card to Zipper that makes hilarious use of a "Looong Card," an eerie card rise, a card transposition using beer (or drink of your choice), a Haunted Pack routine involving a Houdini Seance, several card to impossible locations including one to a belly button ring, a profane (and deceptive) version of the 21 Card Trick, a version of Everywhere and Nowhere using celebrities, and a routine in which a selected card is found in an apple (using a Super Soaker - you don't see many tricks like that!), and much, much more. Please do not purchase this book if you are easily offended by adult themes and language.
Hardbound with dust jacket, 128 pages. Only $35.
The parlor/stand-up routines include Chandu the Mindreader Plays Five-Card Draw (a variant of Histed's The Miracle Divination), Eight-Card Brainwave Goes to Paris (a presentation for the Wrist Chopper), Patter for Sawing a Naked Lady in Two (the title says it all), Cheaper by the Dozen (a slimmed-down version of Mullica's Card in Apple), and Double Double Toil and Trouble (a great trick for Halloween in which a card is found in a bucket of swamp water).
My favorite routines in the book are ones designed for performance in a bar. 20,000 Leagues Under the Suds is a card rise with the deck submerged in a glass of beer. Love Potion Number 9 is a funny handling of the ever-popular Card to Fly. (This routine has a kicker that is well worth the trouble to construct the required prop.) Sixty-Second Card Reading is an easy system for doing fortune telling with playing cards. Duffie Deep-Sixed is a memorable three-card transposition effect. (Magic bartenders should take note of this trick.) The World's Most Obscene 21-Card Trick is a funny presentation for this old war-horse that should get screams of laughter from the appropriate crowd.
... The magic market-place is top heavy with books and DVDs that focus on methodological variations. We seldom encounter products that feature interesting presentations. The Little Egypt Book of Numbers fits the bill nicely, and is a resource that should trigger your own creative explorations.
Steve Bryant is selling, for the modest sum of $35, something seldom put forth in much more expensive tomes, or included with the pricey props that are appearing on the magic scene. Steve Bryant is offering directions on how to actually do the tricks he's discussing. This almost never happens.
... but another part of the secret is the manner in which one might use the hidden techniques to possibly entertain an audience. This book is loaded with creative routines that are bewildering, shocking, astounding, and/or humorous.
... Though many of these effects are ostensibly crafted for "special situations," such as bars, some would not only be wonderful effects in a professional's act, but could very well turn out to be the tricks people talk about. For example, one trick involves a card rising from a glass of beer, and another features a card revelation that will, without a doubt, make an audience scream (not with approval, but with terror). There is a lovely routine with "The Haunted Deck," a fortune telling system that is exceptionally well thought out, a mentalism effect with cards based on the Histed/Fox approach that could be a closer, and a trick for rowdy crowds that is sure to be remembered due to magical employment of an obscenity. I enjoyed reading this book, and appreciated the thought that went into the methods chosen and the presentations. If, in a book, you are looking for routines that will fool people and entertain them, whether it's an effect with built-in humor or one that will leave them purley amazed, this is a book for you.
SOLD OUT -- A few years ago, at some magic convention or other, Mike Close was selling one of his Workers books, and someone asked him if he had sold out. He retorted, "I sold out when I wrote the book." I now know exactly how he feels, because some of my favorite magic is exposed in The Little Egypt Book of Numbers, new from H&R Magic Books.
Joe Stevens fans will be aware that the book began as a work in progress on Joe's Gemini web site, appearing approximately monthly for 12 installments. It was a period of intense creativity for me (relative to my usual zero state) as I attempted to concoct miracles that would play in bars for my friends. I had exposed them only to the best material in magic for several years, so the bar was high. I sought material that was shocking and memorable, something that they would consider out of the ordinary. The creative period extended beyond my commitment to Joe, and the "book in progress" eventually grew to 20 items. The "Little Egypt" refers of course to the part of Illinois that I frequent, and the "Numbers" is because some number plays a part in all the trick titles.
It would be unfair to suggest that all the items became standards in my repertoire. One of them, a mini-play, I have never performed, and yet it is one of my favorites. One of these days I'll work out the logistics of bisecting my naked assistant while surrounded in a Little Egypt saloon. On the other hand, I have a library full of wonderful books, by all the usual cast of Vernon and Marlo and Elmsley and Hamman and Lovell and Lorayne and so on. Despite this, I can honestly say that I routinely perform more items from The Little Egypt Book of Numbers than from any of these books. There are items that should baffle anyone, items that get people wet, items that are sexy, items that are seriously frightening, one that will get you kissed, and one that might result in your mom washing your mouth out with soap.
As I stated in the Introduction, "I want the audiences to feel they are witnessing a once-in-a-lifetime event, perhaps something untried and dangerous, or something outlandishly spontaneous and funny, or (gasp!) something real." If you would like to share such experiences with your audiences, or if you would simply like to learn the most f***ing amazing card trick you have ever encountered (sorry, but there is no other way to describe it!), send H&R Magic Books an order ($35 plus 10% for shipping). Richard and Charlie just love to sell retail! I am not selling the book through Little Egypt Magic. Please order directly from H&R, or through your favorite dealer. For mature (or seriously immature) readers only.
At last! Finally available on CDROM, both volumes of The Little Egypt Gazette, and more:
The first US monthly internet magic magazine --
No more waiting for pesky downloads! Access tricks, reviews, whatever at lightning speed.
Only $24. World Wide Web special: postage free in North America. Please add $3 overseas.
Requirements: A modern internet browser such as Netscape or Internet Explorer. For optimum speed, you should load the contents of the CD to your hard drive (your hard drive only, please). This will require about 8 Meg.
Added value features: A new comprehensive table of contents yields instant access to all the great features of this seminal internet e-zine. Additional features include "The Little Egypt Gazette Story (or what was I thinking?)," all the original Volume 2 cover art, answers to all the Favorite Links Photo Quiz puzzles, and answers to all the Password clues.
Check ordering details at the bottom of this page.
Object Lessons in Personalized Card Magic
An unusual collection of commercial card presentations
and diverse advice by Steve Bryant
Foreword by Mike Rogers
Includes the Last Word Card Stab, a stunning
right-through-the-deck card stab.
Only $22. World Wide Web special: postage free in the
U.S.A. Please add $9 overseas.
An unusual collection of commercial card presentations and diverse advice by Steve Bryant
Foreword by Mike Rogers
Includes the Last Word Card Stab, a stunning right-through-the-deck card stab.
Only $22. World Wide Web special: postage free in the U.S.A. Please add $9 overseas.
I once saw the resume for Dean Rusk, who was Secretary of State
back in the 1960's. It was about 10 lines long. Where excellence is
concerned you don't need to say much. Steve Bryant has written a book
about card magic he calls LITTLE EGYPT CARD TRICKS, with the subtitle
"Object Lessons in Personalized Card Magic." I could end this review
with the words: "Buy this book!" . . . While this is
especially suited to the advanced and intermediate card performers,
who have been around long enough to appreciate the wisdom contained
therein, this book is recommended reading for anyone serious about the
performance of magic. Bravo!
The keynote of the book's performing material is commercialism.
These tricks should seem like more than tricks for any audience.
None of this really describes the book, however, which is fun to
read, charmingly designed, well produced, brilliantly conceived and
executed, amazingly insightful and thoroughly excellent. Recommended
reading for ALL magicians, but especially close-up workers and
aspirants. You'll be a better magician for having read it! I loved
it and bet you do, too.
|Check out our lecture notes! The Little Egypt Gazette: The Lecture 96 contains the best of the personal card tricks from Volume 1 of The Little Egypt Gazette. Included are "Let George Do It" (a presentation for Paul Harris's "Night Shades"), "Everywhere and Nowhere Goes Hollywood," "From the Casebook of Sherlock Holmes," "Ranch Hand," "Red and Blue Cannibals," "The Great Al Baker Three-Card Mental Test," "Satan's Monte," and "Celebrities." The notes are $15, postage free in the U.S. No passwords, no hassles. Add $6 for overseas addresses for the lecture notes.|
You say your mom just gave you a bundle for Christmas and you're trying to figure out what to buy? You've landed in the right paragraph, because not only do we have our usual sensational book and lecture notes available, but also Virtual Foolery, published by Amy Stevens to introduce the world to the columnists who write for GeMiNi, the Greater Magic Network. Edited by Jon Racherbaumer and T.A. Waters, this nicely produced 32-page monograph contains "The Sound of Music" by Ian Adair, "Billion-Dollar Bill Switch" by Pete Biro, "Everywhere and Nowhere Goes Hollywood" by Steve Bryant, "Sand-Which" by Aldo Colombini, "Pieces of Eight" by Karrell Fox, "Persistence of Thought" by Mark Garetz, "Dai's Wager" by Pat Hennessy, "Two Teasers" by Roger Klause, "The Supra-Selling of the Lemming Man" by Simon Lovell, "At Homb With McComb" by Billy McComb, "Mullica's Four-Ace Ending" by Tom Mullica, "Magic for the Rest of the Week" by Anthony Owen, "Marlo's Favorite Devilish Miracle" by Jon Racherbaumer, "On Line, Who Is, and Who Cares" by Mike Rogers, "Gypsy Cursive" by T.A. Waters, and "Double Restoration Rope" by Ron Wilson. Stevens Magic Emporium sells it for $11, and we have a few copies here for that price, postpaid in North America.
|Ordering merchandise from this location is easy. Just forward your Visa or Mastercard number,
your bank account number, and your mother's maiden name to Shifty Enterprises, Ltd., Suite 100-A,
Newark, NJ, and we'll take it from there. Allow 6-8 weeks for delivery.
No, no, no! Let's make it easy and do business the old-fashioned way. For everything other than The Little Egypt Book of Numbers and The Little Egypt Book of Ghosts, just send a check to Steve Bryant, 1639 Sycamore Court, Bloomington, IN 47401. We'll shoot the stuff out to you as rapidly as possible, usually by priority mail. Sorry, Little Egypt Card Tricks, the lecture notes, and Virtual Foolery are sold out. (The book was $22, the lecture notes were $15, and Virtual Foolery was $11. You may be able to order the latter directly from Joe Stevens.) The CD is $24. Postage is free in North America. Overseas, please add $3 for the CD.
The Little Egypt Book of Numbers and The Little Egypt Book of Ghosts are published by H&R Magic Books and are available directly from them or from your favorite dealer. But Richard and Charlie love to sell retail, so I suggest trying them first.