OSMOSIS II - Paul A Lelekis' Latest Ebook - A Review
It seems as if I just reviewed the first Osmosis. Honestly, Paul writes 'em faster than I can review them. That said, it certainly doesn't mean Osmosis II is lacking in content. I believe there is MORE content in the second edition than in the first.
As I mentioned in the first review, I really liked it, in part because there was such a wide array of effects, helpful tips and information. I like diversity. I like small doses of magic converged with insightful writing. And I like effects I can understand. Those of you who know me from the Magic Roadshow know how I like to create issues full of a little bit of everything. Osmosis II reminds me of a Roadshow - It doesn't matter your skill level.. there's something for everyone, from the beginner to the pro.
Paul has the ability to pick effects from some of the giants of magic, add his personal twists, and make it easily performable.. even for a klutz like myself. The first three effects are all good examples. Michael Skinner's version of Marlo's Poker Deal, Comedy Card Mis-call, and Paul's reworking of a Stewart James classic Ace Cutting routine.
Now, when I say Paul makes effects 'easily performable', I wasn't necessarily meaning all his effects are easily performable by everyone. These three are all in the intermediate range and take a little practice.. but that's only fair as we aren't talking 'self-working' here. Divided among the three effects, if you can perform nice double-lifts, a false cut, hold a little finger break, perform double undercuts to the bottom or top, and carry out a false count (after explicit directions from Paul).. you can perform all three like a BOSS.. The Ace Cutting routine is the more difficult of the three, but considering the spectator shuffled the deck prior to the reveal, is well worth the extra effort.
Paul includes his personal patter, and even a little 'blue' humor if you're so inclined and in the right company, to each effect, along with handling tips that simplify the working and practicality.
'An Example of Comedy Control' takes advantage of crowd psychology and helps gain control of a small group of spectators through comedy, making them super-receptive to your magic -without- the use of curse words, firearms, ancient cutting weapons, obnoxious animals, and alcohol. Just a matter of saying the right
thing, and waiting on them to take the bait...
'Osmosis I' featured a brilliant bit of professional misdirection. 'Osmosis II' doubles down with another extremely useful treatise designed to provide ample cover for all those double undercuts, and other similar sleights, you used in conjunction with the first three effects. Nice...
Paul included another of his favorite coin routines in Jumbo Coin Production. Anyone who has experienced the look of amazement on a spectator's face when you produce a big-ass coin knows the value of a good giant coin reveal.. I am not a good one to critique coin manipulation.. remember, I'm a klutz, so I'll have to leave the validity of this effect to those of you who are..
'Take a Break with some Optical Illusions!'.. One of those sneaky little diversions we renaissance men like to toss amongst our genius..
To quote Paul's Table of Content, the next feature is... ' Hand Stuff - Here is an excerpt from Bill Spooner’s JOURNAL of MAGIC RESEARCH by Bill Wysong giving a list of creams, solids and powders for applying to our dry hands for manipulations… especially with cards!'.. I consider this so vital I ran an article in my last Magic Roadshow about properly preparing your hands for a performance. For years I couldn't figure how certain magicians had fingertip control over a deck of cards, able to perform effortless second deals and false counts.. until I discovered it wasn't ALL natural ability.... Welcome to the REAL underground...
Color Changing Knives, Torn and Restored Napkins, Coin Transposition, Money Transportation, An Idea and Routine with an Optical Illusion, Paul Curry's Swindle Switch, Clippo, and a very detailed section on the Faro Shuffle converge in a section Paul calls:
"An eclectic collection of ideas and tricks for you to apply, peruse, and/or integrate into your shows.."
They are just that... a collection of magical thoughts and studies that cover a wide array of props. I think I mentioned in my last review that these can be the most valuable of all. As magicians, we are always looking for a useful tip or trick.. and often judge a book or dvd by how many 'tips' we garnered from it. I have so many 'resources', some very expensive, that resulted in absolutely nothing worthwhile, at least as far as my magic is concerned. Osmosis I and II both provided me with several effects/tips I added to my repertoire.. and that is my highest compliment.
The last section of Osmosis II turned from magic to magic history. Knowing the history of cards, or in this case, one particular card, the Jack, gives your magic a dose of authenticity and realism. We all think of the face cards as 'Royalty'.. but that's not completely true... Paul says: "The Jack or Knave was NOT a term used to indicate royalty as many think today. These terms were used to indicate a dishonest male, a male servant or a male of humble position in society. These terms are also used to indicate a deceitful male. Jacks or Knaves are also used to describe a thief, murderer, a villain or even a monster! Many will remember the most famous of serial murderers, Jack the Ripper. No one knew who Jack the Ripper was, but the term “Jack” was used to describe him!"... I can honestly say I didn't know that... The complete history of the JACK is described in a way that makes you want to go out an impress someone right now!
Paul says, "Girls who wear glasses still can’t see your passes!".. So, to add a definite professionalism to your performances he included videos of his three most-used passes.…the Classic Pass, the Jiggle Pass (my favorite), and Steve Draun’s Midnight Shift. This was a nice way to finish off Osmosis II, with a tutorial of perhaps the most honored of all magic sleights. So many magicians gave up on the pass long ago, and these three videos may be the motivation you need to reevaluate their essential qualities. Who knows.. maybe this time next year you will have mastered the greatest of the most humble of artistic pursuits... the one skill that, once mastered, goes totally unseen. Bummer... But you better believe that other magicians, unlike other artists, both know and appreciate it's perfection.
OSMOSIS II is 35 pages in length and available exclusively through Lybrary.com for $10.00 (Instant download) Available October 15th, 2016.. This is Paul's 37th ebook, and in my opinion, one of his very best...
Rick Carruth - The Magic Roadshow