Card Craft

Discuss your favorite books, authors, and tricks from Kaufman and Company.

Postby Philippe Noël » 10/27/01 01:47 AM

Are there plans to reprint Card Craft, by Hartman J.K.?
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 10/27/01 08:53 AM

I'd like to reprint Card Craft, but it's too damn expensive because the book is so huge! Perhaps next year.
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Postby Oliver Corpuz » 10/27/01 04:10 PM

Richard,
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLESE, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE,PLEASE reprint Card Craft.
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Postby Guest » 10/27/01 10:24 PM

Just a thought,Richard..could you reprint it in paperback and save cost on the printing? I have a paperback of the Coin magic book, and don't personally mind having a book in paperback.
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Postby Brisbin » 03/01/02 12:33 AM

I would somewhat selfishly hope that Card Craft is not reprinted. The material is good, handlings and illustrations are clear, and the book is huge. I searched for several years to find a mint copy, and then only paid about $50.00 more than the original price. There are unread copies out there, waiting for you to find. Go forth and look. You will thank me when you find your copy, and it is not in the hands of every other Joe Magic in your local shop or club. ;)
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Postby Jeff Haas » 03/01/02 11:31 AM

Vic, it's a book. Joe Magic in the local club wants a video.
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Postby Frank Yuen » 03/01/02 01:09 PM

Believe it or not, one just got snagged on eBay yesterday for $75.00. Opening bid was just $40 or $50 but the winner used the "Buy it Now" feature. It was available for about 3 1/2 hours before someone saw it. I would have liked to have seen how high the bidding could have gone. The last time there was one on eBay, I think it went for around $300.00.

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[ March 01, 2002: Message edited by: Frank Yuen ]

[ March 01, 2002: Message edited by: Frank Yuen ]
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Postby Brisbin » 03/01/02 03:51 PM

Originally posted by Jeff Haas:
Vic, it's a book. Joe Magic in the local club wants a video.

Good point, Jeff! What was I thinking? Actually, in the spirit of "magical fellowship," I did try to give a friend or two a heads up when the book popped up on ebay yesterday.
Aldo Columbini once called J.K. Hartman's "Card Craft" his favorite book on card magic. It does make classic plots and magical looking effects more accessible.
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Postby Guest » 03/01/02 07:59 PM

Hey Vic, when Aldo mentioned that, was it in the same interview that asked him to name his three favorite magic books and he named TWELVE? I think Aldo goes more for size. Anyway, if one AFTER CRAFT and one TRICKERY TREATS equal one CARD CRAFT to anyone out there, I'll be happy to sell them both for the price CARD CRAFT is fetching! Seriously, I'd bet that most folks out there looking for CARD CRAFT don't have the other two. Vettty interesting. No point. But vettty interesting!
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Postby Brisbin » 03/02/02 12:41 AM

Hi John, I didn't see Aldo's multiple list of favorites, but he has mentioned to me and a close friend of mine that Card Craft topped his list of card books. You raise a great point about the availability of Mr. Hartman's "After Craft" and "Trickery Treats." Here's a suggestion for my friends who are interested in his work. Buy these two books from John, and work backwards! By the time I get through with Card Craft, (and my beard will be longer and whiter), I'll trade you! :D
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Postby Terry » 03/05/02 06:03 AM

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Postby Oliver Corpuz » 03/14/02 09:54 PM

Richard,

A copy of Card Craft just went on eBay for $412!!! If that auction price is not enough to show that there is ample demand to justify reprinting Card Carft, than what is? Please reprint it.

I'm begging you.
:(
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Postby Brian Morton » 03/14/02 10:35 PM

A copy of Card Craft just went on eBay for $412!!! If that auction price is not enough to show that there is ample demand to justify reprinting Card Carft, than what is? Please reprint it.


Wow!

Between my barely opened copy of Cards As Weapons and the Card Craft that I bought from Richard at the last Magic Summit in D.C. (when he was selling them at a discount to clear out some storage space), I could get a ticket to New Zealand to see my wife's family!

Just kidding! :D I don't believe in selling off my magic books. (Which is why I have them autographed to me, instead of generically. I have pride of ownership)

But I just couldn't help gloating...

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Postby Guest » 03/16/02 09:51 PM

While Brian's gloating, I want to ask this. I was going to post that the book recently went for $412, but Oliver beat me to it, making what appears to me to be an excellent point about what that price proves about a reprint's likely marketability.

So let me ask this: those of you who have the book, did the person who paid $412 get a good deal? I know this is hugely subjctive, but in your opinion(s), is it really worth that kind of money? I have a couple of Hartman's (much!) smaller books, and on the basis of what I've seen so far, I'd have to say no. Am I missing something? To broaden the question, is the material in Card Craft, as Columbini's comment implies, really so special, or do the people that point out that his other more available books aren't as sought after have a point? Please clue those of us who don't have the book in.
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Postby Brisbin » 03/17/02 12:37 AM

I'd like to preface this by saying I am not a card expert. I am, however, a student of card magic. I have many of the classic, must-read books on card effects, but I believe that J.K. Hartman's "Card Craft" took me to the next step. It is for the advancing/intermediate student and performer.

In the "Buyers Guide" preface to Card Craft, Mr. Hartman points out that his book contains "260 separately titled items with over 1500 illustrations by Joseph K. Schmidt." At 669 pages, the book is huge. For me, the clear, concise descriptions and Mr. Schmidt's fine illustrations made this material very accessible to me.

Is a copy of Card Craft worth the $412.00 someone just paid for it on E-bay? I can't say, since I don't routinely spend that much on any books. Would I part with my copy for that amount? Only if I was desperate to put food on the table, and I was somehow unable to perform or work.

I would like to retract my earlier statement here, when I said that I hoped the book might not be reprinted. That was unnecessary. My feeling was based on my experiences when I spent years searching for a copies of particular books, paid relatively high prices for them, and then devoted time to learning and polishing their routines. At that point, many times the books are then reprinted, or the hard-to-find material is cherry-picked in the "Easy to Master" mode.

My feeling now is that good magic books, a rare commodity in today's world of instant publishing, deserve to remain in print. The "real work" secrets will remain hidden in their pages, because as Jeff Haas pointed out, "Joe Magic in the local club wants a video." :o
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Postby Guest » 03/18/02 01:42 AM

In my humble opinion, Card Craft is not a great book. Ok, it's huge and it contains a lot of material, but the majority of it is so-so. I consider it as a book of "Mechanical" Card Magic... Those who own the book may understand what I'm saying. By the way, a few years ago I've read a negative review by Jim Sisti in his Magic Menu, long before he was associated with L&L. Colombini likes the book? Yes, and I know why. Please, read his books: there is a plethora of reinvention from Mr. Hartman. Am I politically incorrect? Maybe I'm not alone!

Regards,

Andrea Antonuccio ;)
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Postby Guest » 03/18/02 05:24 AM

Andrea,

You are not alone. I traded my copy a couple of months ago because I really didn't get much out of it. Granted, I never dreamed that the book would go for $400+ on E-bay (oh well).

I still have my first edition copy of "Cards As Weapons" - another book I got absolutely nothing out of. This one may go to auction since people have been getting in the neighborhood of $300+.
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Postby Randy DiMarco » 03/18/02 08:57 AM

The price being paid for Card Craft has nothing to do with the actual magical worth of the material and most of the buyers will never read it. The reason prices are so high for this book is because people are thinking they will able to sell it later for a profit. The high price for the last copy sold will make the next copy to appear sell for an even higher price. Eventually the bottom of the market will fall out and a lot of people will have high priced books that they have no intention of reading. If you don't believe this is true ask anyone who collected Beanie Babies a few years ago.
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Postby Brisbin » 03/18/02 09:15 AM

Great recent discussion and posts on the content and value of Card Craft. Thanks EE for your comments and questions, and to Andrea, Mark, and Randy for their unvarnished opinions. Andrea makes an excellent point about the book being a source of inspiration for other routines and handlings. Comments from the others are great reminders that the concept of scarcity is at work in magic collectibles, and that one man's meat is another's poison.
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Postby Guest » 03/18/02 10:36 AM

Randy, you may be right about what the game plan was here price-wise, but if so, it betrays a limited knowledge on the part of the "plotters" about how things usually work on eBay.

You could go through eBay category by category and talk about freak high prices that various books, etc. brought. And I really feel that in most every case like this, there is an element of freakishness involved when a price goes significantly above what an item of a specific type generally brings. There is no negative judgement implied by how I'm using "freakishness" here; I only mean that there's some unusual factor or factors at work here and in similar cases, or so I'm guessing. And if the idea was as simple as to drive up prices for the same and similar books in the future, that's a risky proposition at best. Often after a big price like this shows up on eBay, the same item goes for less the next time it's up for sale--and sometimes a lot less.

But back to the book. I'm not trying to discourage more comments on it--the more the merrier, as far as I'm concerned. But I just wanted to say that I'm grateful to all of you who took (and may still take) the time to weigh in on this. I think that I have a much clearer picture in my mind of the kind of book that Card Craft is than I did going in--and that, speaking for myself, anyway, was the reason for my first post on this subject.
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 03/18/02 06:53 PM

I can support EE's argument from personal experience. For quite some time I had been looking for a particular book (the title is not important for this discussion). It never appeared on eBay or abebooks, and H&R or Gregit or Cannon never saw copies of it. Suddenly, the book appeared on eBay and I ended up in a bidding war over it and I paid into the three-digit range. A couple of weeks after that another copy appeared on eBay with a starting bid just shy of what I paid. It didn't sell. It was re-listed and sold for less than half (in the two-digit range) of what I paid. So did I overpay? Probably – but I wanted the book (and yes, I am reading it). I have also been on the better end of some deals, getting unbelievable bargains, so I see those as the “washout” for the few times where I overpaid (and actually I didn't mind the other times because I was bidding on books from Larry Jennings' library and the money was going to BJ).

Value is so subjective. For a while, I was seriously thinking of selling my paperback copy of Cards as Weapons (because I also have a hardbound) simply because of what the book fetches; it's unbelievable. But, as a good friend of mine says of his magic library: “It's my retirement fund.”

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Postby shrink » 03/18/02 07:04 PM

Card Craft is the best book of card magic I own, mainly because it epitomizes the style of card magic I study, practice, perform, and delight in reading/re-reading. I have found this is not the style the bulk of cardicians focus upon. After Craft and Trickery Treats further exemplify this style, but are not as strong in impact.
If you have all of Jerry's early manuscripts, you have about 60% - 70% of the contents of Card Craft, but of that portion, about a third of it has been improved.
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Postby CHRIS » 03/18/02 08:44 PM

A note on eBay prices and reprinting. It takes only two people to drive a price on eBay into the stratosphere. Consequently, high eBay prices are no indication for a significant demand of any particular book.

This is not to say that I wouldn't welcome books being reprinted. Card Craft in particular is definitely worth a reprint. However, the economical success of such a reprint is still questionable.

Chris.... Lybrary.com preserving magic one book at a time
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Postby Guest » 03/19/02 08:56 PM

Don't look now, but it's up again, with nearly five days to go as I write this. It's already at $110, but has yet to meet the reserve (One thing an item going high DOES seem to do is to make other sellers very sure of an items elevated worth, though in fairness, we're nowhere near the stratosphere yet this time.)

This should be an interesting test case, though it may be skewed a little, since this one lists as mint while the other, at least as I recall, didn't. Also if the right person sees this, just mentioning it here before the auction ends could curve space a little. I guess we'll have to wait and see.
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Postby Brisbin » 03/22/02 08:07 AM

Sell our copy of Cards as Weapons, Martha, Card Craft is on e-bay again! (Shades of Rick Johnnson...)
For the "buy-curious" - J.K. Hartman CARD CRAFT magic book, RARE mint
Item # 1084897343
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Postby F.Amílcar » 01/10/13 05:17 AM

Richard,

It will be great if you finally decide to reprint CARDCRAFT.

I think it sincerely.

Truly yours,



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Postby Jackie Huang » 01/10/13 12:50 PM

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Postby Kent Gunn » 01/10/13 11:41 PM

Wow, $350.00

I gotta sell some of my magic books . . . NOT.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/11/13 12:21 AM

I see that its value has gone up a bit again. Up, then down, now up! Wish it wasn't so incredibly expensive to reprint.
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Postby Ted M » 01/11/13 01:33 AM

Being offered at $350 isn't quite the same thing as actually selling at that price.

The last one to successfully find a buyer on eBay went for $144.50 on Nov 15. It's sold mostly in the $150-$200 range for the last several years.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 01/11/13 01:51 AM

Oh--I misread the post. Thought it sold for $350. Wasn't it $55 when it came out? Those were the days!
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