Download E-books The Magician and the Cardsharp: The Search for America's Greatest Sleight-of-Hand Artist PDF

By Karl Johnson

Book Details:

Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Publication Date: 2006-07-25
Number of Pages: 368
Website: Amazon, LibraryThing, Google Books

Synopsis from Amazon:

A recognized magician's trip to discover the best cardsharp ever conjures up the forgotten global of magic the place americans chanced on get away through the nice Depression

It has the nostalgic caliber of an old school fantasy, yet Karl Johnson's The Magician and the Cardsharp is a real tale that lovingly re-creates the flicker of a vanished global. the following, set opposed to the backdrop of the USA suffering throughout the melancholy, is the realm of magic, a realm of stars, sleight of hand, and sin the place goals will be learned - or stolen away.

Following the Crash of '29, Dai Vernon, identified via magicians as "the guy who fooled Houdini," is tramping down Midwestern backroads, slightly making ends meet. whereas swapping secrets and techniques with a Mexican gambler, he hears of a man he doesn't rather think is genuine - a mythical secret guy who bargains completely from the heart of the deck and who locals name the best cardsharp of all time. made up our minds to discover the reclusive genius, Vernon units out on a trip via America's shady, slick, and sinful facet - from mob-run Kansas urban via railroad cities that regarded sleepy basically within the daylight hours. Does he locate the pointy?

Well, Karl Johnson did - after years of analysis into Vernon's colourful quest, examine that led him to areas he by no means knew existed. Johnson takes us to the cardsharp's doorstep and indicates us how he bestowed on Vernon the best mystery in magic. The Magician and the Cardsharp is a distinct and forever interesting piece of historical past that unearths the artistry and obsession of a unique breed of yankee showmen.

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Extra resources for The Magician and the Cardsharp: The Search for America's Greatest Sleight-of-Hand Artist

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Whilst Kennedy took this new pack to illustrate in solution to Vernon’s query, out popped playing cards. An older deck labored higher for the heart, Kennedy defined. It’s a frightening truth approximately sleight of hand that whereas it may well take simply mins, possibly an hour, to stipulate the workings of a stream, and seconds or break up seconds to accomplish it, it could take years to grasp it. As Sunday afternoon gave option to Sunday evening, and darkish got here on, it was once getting towards the time for Kennedy to get to paintings. Vernon needed to commence his trip again to Wichita, and the adventure towards his personal mastery of Kennedy’s outstanding production. The magician and the cardsharp had collaborated all afternoon and by the point he left the little condominium in friendly Hill, Vernon felt that they have been acquaintances. * * * As he labored his approach by way of motor vehicle again to Wichita, Vernon remembered that he owed anyone notice of the result of the hunt for the heart deal. “Have simply spent the full afternoon with Allen Kennedy,” he wrote on a postcard to Charlie Miller. Vernon most likely dropped the cardboard within the mail on Monday in castle Scott, Kansas, yet he made some extent of courting it March 20, 1932, an identical day as his impressive assembly with the cardsharp. Kennedy, he wrote, used to be “a guy of poser. ” Vernon was once cautious let alone the heart deal through identify, yet he concluded, in daring capital letters, “HE particularly DOES IT completely. ” “More later,” Vernon further. “It’s a protracted tale. ” 10 THE GAMBLER’S ROSE everybody returns to friendly Hill. After happening the lam to Chicago within the wake of his boxcar caper within the early Twenties, Allen Kennedy had come again. dead night Underwood had come again from Wisconsin. And Dai Vernon, after returning to Wichita, additionally made up our minds he needed to come again to the little city in Missouri. He desired to look at Kennedy’s captivating sleight once again. “There is one very crucial element i have to see him about,” Vernon confided in a letter to Charlie Miller 3 weeks after the consultation with Kennedy. Vernon used to be already operating relentlessly on Kennedy’s heart deal. yet, as continuously, he was once a stickler for perform. He was once as cautious as a healthcare professional approximately getting each aspect precisely correct, an procedure he had first discovered via his shut examine of Erdnase as a boy. Vernon came upon he used to be having hassle at a key second in Kennedy’s sleight, while he picked up the deck after the minimize to start dealing. He advised Faucett Ross that he expected it was once going to take him a great yr and a half day-by-day perform to excellent this heart deal. That was once much quicker than it had taken Kennedy to beat the flow. yet then, Kennedy had needed to create the sleight from scratch. Vernon have been fortunate adequate to profit it from the grasp himself. Now he desired to return for an additional type. After he arrived again in Wichita from friendly Hill, the Innes division shop hailed Vernon as a returning hero. They didn’t have a clue approximately why he have been long gone, in fact, however the shop used to be happy to add him as their designated Easter weekend appeal.

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