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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Books, Pamphlets & Lecture Notes » » Review: Meant To Be - John Born's Book On The Any Card Any Number Plot (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Platt
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Well, John says, "if you're interested in sleighty moves, this is not the book for you." That's funny because the primary technique featured in Meant to Be requires a very technical and meticulous sleight. It requires pinpoint accuracy which I must admit is too difficult for me to do without fumbling. Unfortunately, as mentioned by Merehula, John never really gets into the detailed finger finnesse necessary to pull off this exhaustive effort. Hmmm?

I think somebody should put out a book that is an unabridged collection of all the wild approaches to the ACAAN or CAAN plot. Everything from tabled doubles to stooges to Koran set-ups to second deals. Now that would be something. MTB is not a bad book. I do think it was mismarketed. Many of us may have bought this believing it would be more of a history book covering the infinite approaches to ACAAN through the years. That, it is not.

On a separate note, IMHO, Mike Rose's "The Grail" is still the one to beat.

Best,

Platt
Sugar Rush is here! Freakishly visual magic. http://www.plattmagic.com
Joshua Barrett
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Thx platt maybe ill look at the grail then. 60 is a high prace tag for a non edited book. its hard to spend that much when something like tangled web is only like 40
Platt
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Having reread my posts here, I just want to make a few things clear.

First, you need not worry that the typos I mentioned are going to confuse you or make the book difficult to read. They are plentiful, but far from found on every page. That was an unfair exaggeration on my part.
As a writer, I was initially surprised by them, but don't let that keep you from purchasing Meant to Be.

Secondly, I don't want anyone to think the content in this book is bad. Like Coins Akira, the method and variations presented are something that results in beautiful, super clean magic. They're just not for me.

John is a passionate, creative guy with a well though out book. Somewhere in the long line of communication, I, and I'm sure many others, came to believe this book was going to be the ultimate collection of ACAAN. It's not. Nor do I believe John intended it to be.

Best,

Platt
Sugar Rush is here! Freakishly visual magic. http://www.plattmagic.com
Steve Haynes
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I enjoyed the book,but still prefer Ken Krenzel's handling from CLOSE UP IMPACT.(but using a memorized deck)Which is what Meant To Be is based on.
But I do like the dump move and the reverse memorized deck idea(Alan Ackerman)for even easier calculations that are revealed in the book.
By the way,the original Krenzel effect is in the book also.
In fact the Book is fowarded by Mr Krenzel.
After reading the book several times,i must say that I am very impressed with Mr Born's thinking on the many other effects that are in the book.
The Grail is a great,simple idea,but it's not a any card any number effect.
If I had only one book to learn A.C.A.A.N. it would be John's Book!.
Cheers....................................
P.S. Get the grail also,it's worth it.
bugjack
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After giving the book a quick initial read, my inclination is to just try and learn Krenzel's routine too. Like I said in an earlier post, the book strangely doesn't talk about the handling required if the chosen card isn't in the first three columns (and the majority of cards chosen do not lie in these columns). The Krenzel handling seems simpler as it doesn't stress the pinpoint accuracy that Born's does.

Like I also said earlier, I'm waiting to spend more time with the book before commenting further, but I'd be curious if anyone who has bought the book has learned and performed the "Meant to Be" routine and how it's gone.
kipling100
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Bugjack, I'm not sure what you mean regarding the handling for cards not in the first three columns. I believe it is designed so that every card, if not on the 3 columns, is either 1 above or below, so it shouldn't take much more effort to get to those...
I think that at least one of the routines describes getting to one of those cards as an example.

Hope this helps,
Dennis
bugjack
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Hi Kipling,

Thanks for your post. You are correct -- the cards not in the three columns are only off by one.

I went back and looked at the book and the "off by one" selection is discussed in "Premonitioned" and "Meant to Be." I had read the main section and then "ReBorned," and had expected to see this scenario come up when discussing the whole column system. When it didn't, I assumed that you were just supposed to figure out what to do.

My bigger comment remains, however. Like Platt, I would have liked to have read a bit more about the fingering and specific handling required to perform this smoothly and accurately.

Out of curiosity, do you perform this routine?

Best,

Scott
Joshua Barrett
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That's a good question. I still have some interest in this, and do any of you that like this, use it?
JanForster
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Following the discussion here (and not only here...) I would like to make some comments.
I consider Meant to be as a superb book. Almost voted for it as book of the year.
Working on the theme of ACAAN more than 12 years I believe John's method comes as close as possible to the perfect solution using only one deck (may be followed by Ken Krenzel's Open and Shut Case, but using a mem deck). Until now I think it's the
best solution.
Some suggestions: I don't use any marks. To facilitate that for me I widened the card case by constructing a new case by cutting and glueing two cases together. Don't get me wrong you've to cut a lot. Finally you'll have a case may be 2 millimeters wider. Besides that I "secure" the case by putting lenthtwise a rubber band around it(ring). Pointing later to the rubber band and removing it gives me some more time to get the break...I remove the rubber band away from my body, so it will rest on my fingers of my right hand. Very easy. After dumping the cards I put the case in my left outer jacket pocket. At the end of the effect the counting spectator gets the cards as a gift. Therefore I will remove a second and ungimmicked card case from my same left pocket.
John's "formulas" to define the key card I abbreviate not minding to work with negative numbers. I guess many mem deck workers do. Always the given order bigger/smaller number I just look whether the result is positive or negative. If positive I add 1, if negative I add 52. Very short and very easy. Try it, I'm very pleased with it. Thanks again to John for giving us such a good input!
Jan Forster
www.janforster.de
John Born
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First of all, I have to say that '07 MagiFest was a blast. Thanks to everyone that came up to say hi.

On a different note…There are a couple of posts that hinted at misunderstanding the purpose of Meant To Be, expecting a conglomeration of every possible way to hack at the ACAAN plot. If you are in search of methods with second deals, Koran decks, and nail writers, I would contend that the ACAAN plot is not for you.

Meant To Be… was written to exemplify creativity and to push the limits that separate art from craft through individual thinking and expression. The focus is not even on the method, rather, the systematic approach to reach a goal. Rather than simply discussing approach as armchair theory, I used the ACAAN plot as an example. Many of the contributions illustrate the same line of thought in development, and were therefore chosen.

This is very different than recognizing that one could put a double to the table or use second deals to result in a card at any number “trick.” Though this is the sort of book Platt may be looking for, another book of publishing methods because they are merely possible it is FAR from what the magic community needs, as that type of material does little for the progression of our art. To progress as students of magic, we must evolve in how we think about and approach our craft. We are more successful as thinkers, creators, and performers when we ask the right questions. My purpose is to encourage creativity through exemplifying a systematic thought process designed for those that search for higher ground.


Thanks Jan. Good advice. I really like the rubberband idea. Since this book’s release, I have developed many variations to this system that may be of interest to those that want to work with it. One includes box design variation that allows execution with no marks in a box with a standard witdth.

All the best,

John B. Born
Platt
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Quote:
On 2007-02-08 15:54, John Born wrote:

Meant To Be… was written to exemplify creativity and to push the limits that separate art from craft through individual thinking and expression.
This is very different than recognizing that one could put a double to the table or use second deals to result in a card at any number “trick.” Though this is the sort of book Platt may be looking for, another book of publishing methods because they are merely possible it is FAR from what the magic community needs, as that type of material does little for the progression of our art.

John, I really don't mean to hammer away at you, but I couldn't disagree more with your above comments. Are you truly so presumptuous as to speak for the entire magic community by telling us a collection of (a)caan effects is far from from what we need? Who are you to make such a claim? I've already received numerous emails from Café members stating that's exactly what they're looking for. You go on to state "that type of material does little for the progression of our art."

John, that's absurd. You should know that creativity is far more often than not a matter of building on what's already been done. Almost invariably, musicians, painters, authors, and yes, even magicians claim that their inspiration to further the art came from learning and embracing the vast history of what came before. So in the interest of furthering the (a)caan plot, I can't think of anything more valuable than laying out the numerous fascinating angles to this plot that so many creative minds have brought to the table.

I want to once again state that MTB is a fine book with a lot of great thinking. But please, let's put the precious "art vs. craft" and "higher ground" language aside. Be it a tabled double or a stack, art is what we make of it.
Sugar Rush is here! Freakishly visual magic. http://www.plattmagic.com
John Born
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Platt-

With all due respect, you are talking nail writers, second deals, and Koran decks. You even recommend "The Grail" as THE solution, which is not even an ACAAN. The book either recognizes or explains over 50 versions of ACAAN and its predecessors. Brother, please move along to another section. Your wisdom, I'm sure, can be used elsewhere.

John B. Born
Daren
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Can someone please post a short review of the other effects included in this book?
fooksau
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Why not just take the cards out of the case using your system and use a quick pass or even cut to position the cards? I understand that your performance needs to deceive not only spectators but magicians as well. But to laymen would it really take away from the effect if you cut the cards once (pass) after you dumped them?
How many Magicians does it take to advertise a trick? Three.. One to steal the trick. One to steal HIS trick. And one to write a good review.
bugjack
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Whether you go for it or not, the book's premise involves the development of a "pure" effect, one that seems as close to real magic as possible. For Born, that requires that the cards be handled as minimally as possible after the selected card is named. There are other versions in the book that are less rigorous in approach.

You're right, a good magician can get a lot of stuff by a layman, but that's not really what Born's book is about.
G. Batson
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Quote:
On 2007-02-08 21:55, Platt wrote:
(...to John Born) Are you truly so presumptuous as to speak for the entire magic community by telling us a collection of (a)caan effects is FAR from from what we need? Who are you to make such a claim?

Platt, You really can't argue with him...after all, he is JOHN BORN. I agree with you but you can't argue with someone with such rigid ideas. John's looking out for us.

I wouldn't worry John. Mike Close liked your book. That's all that matters, right?

G.
John Born
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Hey Guys -

Finally back. Thanks to everyone in AL and FL for another successful tour. It was a real pleasure, and look forward to returning in the future.

Mr. Batson -

Thanks for your comments. If, by rigid ideas, you mean have clear goals and vision for something worthwhile, then yes, I very have rigid ideas. As for arguing, there was none.

John B. Born
Alex Linian
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Quote:
On 2007-02-13 22:21, fooksau wrote:
Why not just take the cards out of the case using your system and use a quick pass or even cut to position the cards? I understand that your performance needs to deceive not only spectators but magicians as well. But to laymen would it really take away from the effect if you cut the cards once (pass) after you dumped them?

If thought of as a puzzle it would make no difference. But changing the moment of the shift affects timing which is an important factor in building anticipation during a performance.

John, I just wanted to add here that, while I have not read the book completely, I have taken a good look at it; I like its purpose and the way it is structured very much. Definitely not a "thrown together" project, or a simple collection of methods.
Jason Shapiro
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I love this book. Great lecture. Don't forget to come back to Atlanta as well.
paisa23
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I'm ordering now from HP, only because I have a few other items that I need to get. John wish I was in Jersey this November when you get there.
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