Simon Lovell Presents His Post Accident Lecture Book! (A Blatant Attempt To Raise Money!) by Simon Lovell

Reviewed by Jamy Ian Swiss (originally published in Genii September, 2005)

Many readers are doubtless already aware that the inimitable Simon Lovell, that mad expatriate British ferret, was recently injured in a serious car accident. I am happy to report that his body, if not his ways, is thoroughly on the mend, and no doubt by Fall he will be up and out again, inflicting his uniquely brash and rather insane style of magic on innocent lay public and magician victims. Mr. Lovell has a substantial book in the works, which we hope to see released by the end of this year. In the interim, he has released a new set of lecture notes with the more or less self-explanatory title you see above. Mr. Lovell's pain is our gain, however, because these notes essentially offer an advance peek into the forthcoming book. There is a wealth of material here: 19 items, all thoroughly described, complete with script, and amply accompanied by very good illustrations from Hannah Ammar. The majority of the material is with cards, along with a handful of ideas with coins, dice, other miscellany, and two handlings for Mr. Lovell's famed Pen Through Tongue (that could have been titled Gross and Grosser—and I mean that in only the best way).

The card work is all practical and commercial, and bespeaks of experienced use before real audiences. Much of it falls well within average technical abilities; some of it is more advanced. The most revealing aspect of the accompanying scripts is perhaps the insight they afford into Mr. Lovell's apparently wacky public persona. If you've seen him perform, these notes are a lesson in how a well-planned, totally controlled performance can, in the right hands, be made to seem virtually impromptu and perhaps even out of control. Considered as such a lesson, the scripts are enormously thought-provoking; considered as a source of material for readers to go out and use themselves, such misguided attempts may well lead to a rapid crash and burn.

There is a great deal of material here which I will restrain myself from specifcally describing, in lieu of the eventual release of the entire book. But this is an extremely good value, well worth the investment in return for much thoughtful and eminently useful material, and if you are as yet unfamiliar with Mr. Lovell's work, this advance taste will no doubt whet your appetite for more in the future. Mr. Lovell actually has quite a catalog of lecture manuscripts which I encourage you to write to him and inquire about, not all of which will be included in the forthcoming volume. In particular, he has produced one of the best manuscripts on the second deal that I have ever had the pleasure to read, and if you've seen him demonstrate some of his abilities in this department, you won't be surprised by that endorsement. If you're interested in this technique, you would do well to try and pry a copy of those notes out of him.

8-1/2" x 11" stapled; 27 pages; 86 line drawings; 1995; Published by Simon Lovell