A wonderful ebook explaining all the best slate tricks and effects, by Peter Warlock, who has used slate tricks in his programs for many years. Covers the manipulation of unprepared slates, the use of the flap, various mechanical slates and aids, little know methods of fake mediums, chemical writing and many other methods that are as effective as they are unique.
It seems probable that the current war, like the World War of 1914-1918, will bring a resurgence of interest in spiritualism. Already we see the beginnings of such a revival, and if it continues we may look forward not only to a large crop of fake spirit-mediums but also to an increase of pseudo-spiritualistic effects in the programs of magicians. Hence, Peter Warlock's The Best Tricks with Slates makes its appearance at an opportune moment.
The book is divided into five sections. Section I (10 pages) explains six methods of getting messages on ordinary, non-mechanical slates. Chief among them are a subtle routine by Jardine Ellis, an extremely "nervy" one by Maro, and the well-known Edward Victor slate trick which many readers will already have met in The Magic of the Hands. Section II (22 pages) describes tricks that employ slate "flaps." Such important matters as types of flaps and disposing of the flap are given adequate attention, as are also the nature and use of the locking flap. In this section, Mr. Warlock explains seven complete slate tricks, all obviously practical and effective, several of which differ radically from slate-writing as it is usually presented.
Section III (10 pages) tells how to produce writing on slates by chemical means, and explains in detail two novel tricks that employ this method. Section IV (6 pages) presents a series of eight slate-writing principles by J. F. Orrin, Max Holden, Verrall Wass, Woodhouse Pitman, and others. Several of these routines are very good indeed. Section V (11 pages) deals with slates as an auxiliary in the performance of feats which do not fall under the heading of slate tricks. The reader is shown here how to employ slates for securing information, for conveying information to an assistant, for cover in opening and reading billets, and for other useful and necessary purposes.
This is, on the whole, the best treatment we have yet seen of spirit slate-writing effects. Not only is it as extensive as the slate-writing sections of David P. Abbott's Behind the Scenes with the Mediums; Hereward Carrington's The Physical Phenomena of Spiritualism, and William E. Robinson's Spirit Slate Writing; but it is much more varied in content and in addition is thoroughly up-to-date. Mr. Warlock has drawn his material from many sources, but has been commendably scrupulous in giving credit to both inventors and authors. He has written a book of 65 pages, with 30 illustrations, which is bound in soft boards. He includes a bibliography of 36 works. It is hard to believe that any magician who wants to present slate-writing could not find in this volume precisely the feat to meet his particular needs.