I agree with Eric, the story of Francis F. Carlyle needs telling from a biographical POV. The book that was done on his magic may have recorded his methods, but from what I've heard of him, it was only in the context of his personality that the real lessons were learned.
As I understand it, Mr. Carlyle was an intense performer, engaging and a devoted student of the Vernon school of "naturalness", although he was also somewhat neurotic. Apparently he wrestled with his own demons, and it was through magic that he found clarity.
I mention this because unless you're aware of it, you might miss one of the great lessons in Carlyle's contribution to the classic "Stars of Magic" series. One of the effects he contributed was his handling of the watch steal. However, most of the article is dedicated to a description of the coin effect he used to set up the steal, a handling of the "expansion of texture" effect. For years I found this frustrating. I wondered why so much space was spent on a familiar coin trick, when what I really wanted was detailed instruction on how to steal the watch.
But in another book on pickpocketing, I came across the observation that a successful pickpocket should be a "people" person, a "toucher". That should be a part of your onstage persona, and the first time you touch a spectator should not be when you go for the watch.
That's when it hit me. Given his past (let us presume) neuroses, I doubt Mr. Carlyle was the kind of person who was so comfortable with strangers that he was a constant "toucher". And what we see in "Stars" was the effect he used to accommodate the spectator to his touch, and to taking his instruction. The "Expansion of Texture" allows even a shy, neurotic performer to gradually invade a stranger's space, so that by the time his watch is stolen, the momentary contact does not seem jarring or suspicious.
Given the recent interest in watch stealing and the frequently-heard reservation about how one gets started, perhaps the time is right for a detailed look at Carlyle's watch steal, and the personal life and times of Francis Carlyle.