Cards

The Basics

The Royal Road to Card Magic
Jean Hugard and Frederick Braue (Faber & Faber)
The classic text on card magic. Simple, easy to follow, and very complete, despite its age. Deserves to be on every magician’s bookshelf as a course and as a reference.

Charles Jordan’s Best Card Tricks
Karl Fulves (Dover)
Many of the fundamental principles of card magic were invented by Jordan. This small book contains a wealth of clever and useful ideas.

Close-up Card Magic
Harry Lorayne (Tannen)
A popular book that probably started more magicians doing card tricks than any other book. Harry Lorayne is considered one of the best writers in card magic and his books are generally worth reading.

How to do tricks with cards
Bill Turner (Collier Books)
Excellent beginner’s book: clear, well-written, and very complete. This is actually my favorite first book.

A bit more work

Million Dollar Card Secrets
Super Subtle Card Miracles
Frank Garcia (Million Dollar Productions)
Lots of good tricks by lots of good people, especially in Super Subtle Card Miracles.

The Card Magic of LePaul
Paul LePaul (Tannen)
A classic. Covers much excellent material, both techniques and tricks. A must for lovers of fine card magic.

Revolutionary Card Technique
Ed Marlo (Magic, Inc.)
A series of a dozen booklets, each covering one technique in depth, with variations and applications. One of the best-kept secrets in card magic, these booklets are a must for any serious card worker.

Inner Secrets of Card Magic
More Inner Secrets of Card Magic
Further Inner Secrets of Card Magic
Ultimate Secrets of Card Magic
Lewis Ganson (Harry Stanley)
A wealth of tricks by Dai Vernon, including the original Twisting the Aces. The last book contains much material from friends of Vernon. All are highly recommended.

For serious students

Magic Mafia Effects
The Esoterist
Here’s My Card
Las Vegas Kardma
Allan Ackerman (various)
Allan Ackerman is the smoothest card handler I’ve ever met. All his tricks and techniques deserve careful study.

Anything by Jerry Andrus
(self-published)
Jerry Andrus’ work is like no other. All his creations are unusual, off-beat, and interesting.

Derek Dingle’s Complete Works
Richard Kaufman (Kaufman & Greenberg)
Derek Dingle is the O. Henry of magic: just when you think a trick is over, he hits you with a knock-out kicker. His work has influenced a whole generation of card workers. A big book of sophisticated techniques and commercial tricks; highly recommended.

The Collected Works of Alex Elmsley
Stephen Minch (L&L Publishing)
Alex Elmsley is one of the most brilliant magical thinkers of our time. These two monumental volumes contain an enormous amount of clever, original material. Destined to become classics.

The Expert at the Card Table
S. W. Erdnase (various)
This is the classic book on cards. It’s the book which the earlier masters (Vernon, etc.) cut their teeth on. Written by a mysterious figure, it contains a lot of difficult but highly useful techniques. For very serious students!

Anything by Karl Fulves
(self-published)
Karl Fulves is an original thinker and, in my opinion, a great writer. His books on Riffle Shuffle technique are unsurpassed, but he has much more to offer.

Expert Card Technique
Jean Hugard and Frederick Braue (Faber & Faber)
Another classic. This standard reference work contains an enormous amount of material, mostly technical. A must.

Anything by Jon Racherbaumer
(self-published)
Jon Racherbaumer is the author and publisher of an enormous amount of “inner circle” card material, most notably by Ed Marlo. He’s also a top cardman in his own right and his ideas deserve your attention.

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