SOE arrived today and I am taking a break from a few hours spent sitting on a dock beside the little manatee river, bathed in sun and a gentle breeze, working through the Charlie Miller section.
I am simply in heaven. Within the first twenty pages are two techniques/subtleties that are superior solutions to problems in routines that are centerpieces of my repertoire. Beyond the immediate applicability for me, is a deeply enjoyable book. Harry's personality shines through in the combination of stories/reflections on the legends that were fellow travelers of his, and in the incredibly elegant, devious conjuring that fills the pages. It is like sitting down for a pleasant afternoon with a legend.
Between The Book of Secrets, Mnemonica, The Richardson volumes, The Structural Conception of Magic, the completion of Card College, and this volume -- we have been extraordinarily lucky in the last few years to see the release of books that will likely still be classics decades from now. The explosion of information in magic has, at least, meant the release of plenty of wheat to go along with the overabundant chaff. It is worth noting that -- while my list certainly isn't definitive -- the majority of the items on it have come courtesy of Hermetic Press. In the last two years or so I have almost become a "subscriber" to HP -- buying virtually everything they have released, I have never been disappointed by a title that has come out of their shop -- and I doubt that I am alone. Thank you, so much, to Mr. Minch for continuing to live up to such a high standard of quality.
My hope is that, to reward Mssrs. Riser, Minch et al. many will buy this. For my own sake, I hope far fewer will actually read it.