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Wandcraft by Judge Gary Brown & Lawrence Hass - A Review

This is the Ad Copy:

Although the magic wand is a primary symbol of magic, many magicians today disregard it as an affectation, anachronism, or empty contrivance. And so, they lose sight of its power and promise as an instrument of magic.

In this groundbreaking book, Judge Gary Brown reawakens us to the potential of magic's most ancient tool. Growing out of his own dawning realization and impassioned play, Wandcraft includes:

- Six fully-scripted routines that integrate a magic wand into their performance.
- Complete instructions on how to build five types of relatively simple, yet attractive wands.
- Practical theory about the history and functions of a magic wand to help this powerful tool come alive in your heart and hands.

"Wandcraft is essential reading for any magician. It is a practical guide to making your own magic wand that also re-empowers this ancient magical tool for modern times."
- Jeff McBride (Grandmaster of Magic)

"The wand is an essential tool for magicians, and this book is an essential companion that teaches how, and why, to add this symbol of might to your own magic."
- Steve Cohen (Chamber Magic)

"Wandcraft covers everything a magician needs to know about using a magic wand. Aside from clarifying ten various uses, Judge Brown offers tips to help you make your own wand. And, yes, a few of his favorite tricks are included. I am happy to include this in my library."
- George Schindler (Dean of the Society of American Magicians)

"Of all the books on making and using magic wands I've read, this is the only one."
- Harrison Greenbaum (America's Got Talent, The Illusionists: Direct from Broadway, owes Gary a favor)

My Thoughts:

My gosh.. what can you NOT say about the venerable magic wand? A mainstay of the past and a must-have of the Potter generation.. magic wands represent the essence of magic and magical endeavors. Some magicians would just as soon perform without their knickers as to walk onstage without their wand.

Wands may have been used by prehistoric peoples. Cave drawings clearly show men with sticks in hand, implying perhaps they were people of power. They were without a doubt used as early as the 1200s in both religious ceremonies and the occult. In Wicca, they were used to exert control over angels and genies. Since, they are used during the casting of spells, think Harry Potter, and in a gentler manner during the performing of magic.. as magicians are aware.

Traditionally made of wood, wands are commonly formed from oak, hazel, and other craftable woods. They are frequently carved and adorned to the liking of the beholder. WANDCRAFT is solely for wands used during the art of magic.

Judge Gary Brown, a United States District Judge in New York, is very well-known in magic circles as both a writer and an inventor. Some of his original effects include Vikings "Spirit Trumpet" and "Telekinetic Chess", "Psy-Colony", "Believe", and "Double Boston Box". Some of his written works include "Al Flosso.. The Coney Island Fakir" and "Henry Slade and His Slades".. among others.

I was afraid I might be pushed to review something I found boring. That comes from having never used a wand. It's such a pleasure to be totally surprised. Judge Brown constructed WANDCRAFT in a way that made it highly interesting and entertaining from the first chapter. I certainly learned far more than I anticipated.. and have regrets only for those of you who will never read WANDCRAFT.

Short but concise chapters on wand theory, defining the wand, finding your wand, and ten powers of an ungimmicked wand served as a perfect beginning for folks like me.

Next, more detailed chapters discussed not only building tips, but actual effects, six in all, you can perform with your wand as the centerpiece. The Twenty Fiirst Century Anti-Gravity Wand and The Heartbroken Wand are two of my favorites. There's a wealth of information on tips, finishes, exotic woods and a chapter on Willard The Wizard wands and both their construction and handling. (Fairly easy to construct, they are made from a wood dowel and bullet casings..)

More chapters on the Deco Wand and the Rolled Card Wand follow.. plus additional effects. The Hoffmann Coin Wand, Turned Wands and Two Piece Threaded Wands are discussed and illustrated in detail. You can't ask for more..

WANDCRAFT ends with a final flourish and is followed by a lengthy bibliography sure to interest anyone who loves magic history.

WANDCRAFT is almost 100 pages long and is published by THEORY AND ART OF MAGIC PRESS and Larry Hass. I'm not skilled enough to tell you about paper and page thickness.. but it's plenty good enough! It's exactly what you'd expect of a thirty dollar book. (Hard cover. To my knowledge, not available as a soft cover.)

If you have an interest in wands, the history of wands, or creating a custom wand, you will not find a better book. WANDCRAFT discusses different types of wands and tips, but does not go into deep detail about the physical construction of wands. If you want to make your own from scratch I assume you have some woodworking skills, or access to something or someone that can help you along. Don't let this deter you. WANDCRAFT will provide you with multiple options, and through a multitude of pictures help you envision what you want.. and why.

I am recommending WANDCRAFT to all my magical friends and Magic Roadshow Readers.

$30.00 From Murphy's Magic and all their associates..

Review by Rick Carruth
Magic Roadshow - Magic's #1 Free Newsletter
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