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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The Gambling Spot » » Derek Delgaudio (6 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

buntymc
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So, do we believe his story, or is he just the next Daniel Madison?

I'd have been more inclined to believe him had he just said -- like every other cheat before him -- that he was doing it for the money.

But rescuing an old black road hustler from death by cancer (by standing in for him and saving his job) strikes me as something that's specifically designed to make sure he doesn't fall foul of cancel culture. "Hey, I'm a social justice warrior too! Let me be!"

Delgaudio is a great storyteller and it's a really stellar read, but I think there's a probably pretty solid reason why it's subtitled "A true story and other lies."
buntymc
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Oh, if you haven't read the book, here he is talking about it on NPR. The book is well worth your time though.

https://www.npr.org/2021/03/01/972501227......40762815
Kimura
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Most of the characters in the book are composites of various known and unknown figures. a known figure (a friend of people here) dealt games of that nature, and unfortunately, passed away. glib remarks about "rescuing" may be taken the wrong way, so please be respectful.

anyway, as a result of this merging and mixing of individuals, the stories are also composite of fiction and fact. I do not believe for a second that the literary choices derek made have anything to do with cancel culture, or anything of that nature... it's just a way to make the book interesting. I happen to think derek has succeeded - it's an excellent book.

as to whether derek dealt those games? no idea. I have no particular reason to disbelieve him - but I'm sure the particulars are different from that which are described in the book. and that's fine.
buntymc
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On Mar 18, 2021, Kimura wrote:
glib remarks about "rescuing" may be taken the wrong way, so please be respectful.


Is it glib? The idea that a middle aged man of a different race who makes his living in a criminal enterprise would somehow befriend an 18 year old kid because he likes his slight of hand -- and then the two go on a road trip together struck me as being the most implausible part of the whole story. And mum is fine with this? If this was the fifties, it might be somewhat plausible, but isn't he in his mid-thirties? Is this really supposed to have happened in the 21st century?

Quote:
anyway, as a result of this merging and mixing of individuals, the stories are also composite of fiction and fact. I do not believe for a second that the literary choices derek made have anything to do with cancel culture, or anything of that nature... it's just a way to make the book interesting. I happen to think derek has succeeded - it's an excellent book.


It's a very entertaining book, sure and I'd highly recommend it to anyone with an interest in this forum. But a composite of fiction amd fact is surely just fiction? I'm sure that there were bits of James Frey's 'A million little pieces' that actually happened to him as well but if you're allowed to just invent the bits that didn't actually happen for dramatic effect, it doesn't really count as a memoir, does it?
Kimura
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I get what you're saying, but I don't think the book is claiming to be anything it isn't. Openly stretching the truth is not a new narrative technique - this is just Gonzo writing applied to memoir. derek even mentions reading hunter s thompson at one point (if I remember correctly, that is).

SPOILER ALERT for anyone who hasn't read the book:
this is evident in the final few sentences of the book. they undermine the previous pages, and are designed to leave the reader in doubt over what is true and what isn't. that's almost the point of the book, and it ties in with the "true story and other lies" subtitle.
tommy
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A fictionalized true story is an illusion. An illusion is not a complete lie but a distortion of the truth. An illusion being partly true will tend to have plausible deniability. Anyway, for one’s amusement treat the book as fiction: believe it true, while at the same time know it isn’t.
If there is a single truth about Magic, it is that nothing on earth so efficiently evades it.

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Delgaudio's recent live show, and now his new book are held in very high regard in both the magic and live theatre worlds.
From an artistic point of view, Delgaudio has established a substantial amount of credibility in recent years.

But in the "hustling cards and dice" world, you would likely be hard pressed to find anybody that even knows his name.
One could take from that pretty much anything they want to.

I think Delgaudio's recent track record establishes him solidly as a highly respected (and obviously very talented) creative artist in the worlds of theatre, film and the written word.
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JasonEngland
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Everything in the book is essentially true. I say essentially because some of the characters are composite characters. It's much easier to write that "Character A" said 5 different things than to introduce 4 extra characters just to have them each say their one line.

But everything that "matters" in that book actually happened. In some cases, the level of detail is phenomenal. Guess you had to be there.


Jason
Eternal damnation awaits anyone who questions God's unconditional love. --Bill Hicks
5ggg
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I don't know him, but I don't think cancel culture played any part at all in this. Loved the film on HULU, sadly I missed the live show. Madison isn't even in the discussion plus Derek would need about 37 tattoos on his hands to even compete

"glib remarks about "rescuing" may be taken the wrong way, so please be respectful." as usual, Kimura speaks the truth.



Bones, "in the "hustling cards and dice" world, you would likely be hard pressed to find anybody that even knows his name." I wonder who in that world does have a name people recognize? Aside from SF?
JasonEngland
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Quote:
On Mar 18, 2021, buntymc wrote:

But rescuing an old black road hustler from death by cancer (by standing in for him and saving his job) strikes me as something that's specifically designed to make sure he doesn't fall foul of cancel culture.


Except that it happened, essentially exactly the way it's written (apart from some "artistic license" details that don't change anything significant).

Jason
Eternal damnation awaits anyone who questions God's unconditional love. --Bill Hicks
Mr. Bones
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On Mar 22, 2021, 5ggg wrote:
Bones, "in the "hustling cards and dice" world, you would likely be hard pressed to find anybody that even knows his name." I wonder who in that world does have a name people recognize? Aside from SF?


Good point ... and the answer is probably nobody.

I do however, defer to Jason as I believe he knows the author better than any of the rest of us here ... and would only add that my reference to Delgaudio as a "creative artist" wasn't meant as any sort of insult.
But to clarify, when a creative artist blends real-life situations with artistic license ... IMO the tales told become fiction by definition - unless that creative license is clearly explained by the author (to the reader) as to where and when that artistic license was taken.

Certainly fictional tales based on real life stories and situations are nothing new in the book publishing world ... but I do think it's necessary to clearly define "fiction" that is based on (but not an accurate and historical re-telling) of real people, places, or things ... and an outright non-fiction re-telling of actual facts, people, places, and things as they occurred.
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5ggg
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Yeah, my fault I wasn't trying to imply you were insulting him in any way. I can only think of one person who knows without a doubt he's one of the top in the country, and lets us know it all the time.
splice
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What's the saying again? "If someone might think you ain't, you gotta tell them you is"?
landmark
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Quote:
this is evident in the final few sentences of the book. they undermine the previous pages, and are designed to leave the reader in doubt over what is true and what isn't. that's almost the point of the book, and it ties in with the "true story and other lies" subtitle.


My impression as well.
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