This book was quite a hit when it was released. It's a theoretical and practical treatise on the fascinating idea of the Princess Card trick. The concept of this trick is simple: you show a group of cards (or objects) and have someone think of one. You then show the same cards a moment later and the thought-of card or object is gone. You never even have to ask what the thought-of card is! It's a brilliant concept and Peter explored it in full. This is a VERY hard to find book and we're delighted it has been expanded and reprinted.
Republished and EXPANDED by Peter's long-time friend and traveling companion Phil Willmarth, the book is brought up to date with variations of the effect or method of which Peter was either unaware or unable to include. Methods for one person or thousands, impromptu or prepared, with cards or without are now included by some of the finest minds in magic. Plus, an "Annotated Appendix" with "Tips and Related Information" and "Reviewing 'Pairs Re-Paired' Methodologies," shedding new light on the basic methodology.
In short, The Impostress Princess EXPANDED teaches an astonishing trick with several well-thought-out variations. Among other things, it will teach you new ways of thinking about your own magic.
Size: 6" x 9"
Hardcover with dust jacket
SKILL LEVEL - Intermediate
"One of the best books on magic I have ever read. Even if you never do the effect, and I cannot imagine you will not, you will learn a lot about the psychology and showmanship involved in the effective presentation of mystery effects of all kinds. The Impostress Princess is, I suspect, destined to become a classic treatise on a classic effect."
- Charles Reynolds
"The Impostress Princess EXPANDED was a joy to read. Besides being a scholarly treatise on an effect I have loved since my first Paul Fox Gimmick, it demonstrates the approach all magicians should take with their craft and the kind of practical thinking that must be applied in developing our art. Both the book by Peter Tappan and the expanded materials by Phil Willmarth are worthy of long hours of study -- not just for the 'Princess,' but for the professional manner in which all aspects of mystery performing are dealt with.
"There are so many outstanding items from luminaries of the past and present that the material is overwhelming. My favorite, however, is the Irv Weiner method. I knew Irv briefly and he was, indeed, a wonderful man and terrific performer. To now understand his secret is a privilege I am truly grateful for.
"Thank you, Phil, for reminding me of what a great magic book ought to be."
- Richard Osterlind
"I like DVD's, but I love books. I love books because they make you think. They make you wonder how you would perform a certain trick. How would you use this principle, this concept and make the audience go slack jawed with astonishment? If that's how you think, then get The Impostress Princess. It is a book originally authored by the late Peter Tappan and Phil Willmarth. It has been updated and expanded. Is it good? Here's a hint, the first edition sold out fast and many people paid handsomely to get used copies on Ebay.
"The Impostress Princess is a compilation from many magicians on one particular trick. Magicians like Al Baker, Orville Meyer, Paul Fox, Al Koran, Simon Aronson, Irv Weiner, Bruce Bernstein, and on and on are included in this book. That should give you another hint about the value of this tome. I like this kind of book because you get to examine and study a trick from many angles and points of view. This trick is a good one and has its origins dating back to over a hundred years.
"So, what is this trick? Essentially it is a mental trick with cards that uses a mathematical method. The deck is shuffled and the performer divides the deck amongst many audience members. Each person stands up and memorizes a card from their packet. Then the packets are collected and handed back to the magician. The magician begins calling out cards and having people sit down. The process continues to build in drama until the end when the magician can simply name the exact card for the last one or two people.
"The book is intelligently laid out. It steps you through the origins, the basic method, and then begins to explore many alternate systems to achieve the basic effect. The book also covers the psychology and foundations of the trick. How the deck is handled, divided up, and shuffled is described in great detail. There is a section on what to do if things go wrong. There are sections that discuss how to build the dramatic tension. The book also contains scripts from different performers giving ideas on how to establish a premise for the trick.
"Why should I get the book? I could hear you asking that question. I will tell you this. I have flabbergasted a room full of magicians at a convention with one particular version from this book. No, I won't tell you which one. That would be too easy. Two, I have entertained and astonished lay audiences with this trick. Three, even if you don't perform this trick, the information in this book will teach you about performing and studying other magic effects.
"When I finished reading this book, I noted that I had bookmarked eight different pages to refer back to later for more study. I believe that the biggest problem with this book is that there are so many good ideas for this one trick, it will be difficult to choose only one. I want to say go get this book. It's awesome. But, really, I hope you don't, because I would like to keep all this information for myself.
- Christian Painter
"Phil Willmarth has done a great service to magic and mentalism by republishing Peter W. Tappan's The Impostress Princess. Tappan's passion for this classic of mentalism is evident on every page.
"The net of his research is broad, and the depth of his scholarship would do credit to any researcher.
"The fact that this is an expanded edition, including material that Tappan could not use in the original and/or variations that have emerged since the original publication of the book only adds value to the work.
"I must confess that I hurried to make up the deck for the Irv Weiner method shortly after reading it. I must also confess that my first encounter with the Princess came by way of the Paul Fox Miracle Gimmick.
"I often used this as part of my program of magic for adults long before, in the view of many of my friends, I went over to the 'Dark Side' of bizarre magic and mentalism.
"If one is looking for a performance piece that 'packs flat and plays big,' surely one of the many variations in this book will satisfy that need."
- Charles (Picard) Pecor