Mentalism and mental magic is a type of magic for grown ups which depends less on props and sleights and more on psychology and misdirection. Modern mentalism also includes elements of hypnosis. In recent times mind-magic and mentalism has increased in popularity. Street magic is performed by magicians like David Blaine and Dynamo and incorporates elements of mental magic. Derren Brown is a very well known mentalist from the UK who has also increased interest in the form.
People's interest in exactly how mentalists achieve their effects has increased and you can perfectly understand it, some mentalists are incredible. It does take many years to become a good mentalist however, there are a few books to get you going in the pursuit. Here is a review of 3 mentalism books.
13 Steps to Mentalism by Corinda
13 Steps to Mentalism by Corinda was originally put together and distributed as a 13 part mail-order series. They were put together into a book after release.
The book is suitable for beginners and gives a beginner a good grounding in necessary mentalism techniques. In this book is pretty much everything a beginner would need to know to make a start with mind-magic and mentalism.
The 13 steps are:
1. Swami Gimmick (secret writing)
2. Pencil, lip, sound, touch and muscle reading
3. Mnemonics and mental systems
5. Blindfolds and X Ray Eyes
7. Book Tests and Supplement
8. 2 Person Telepathy
9. Mediumistic Stunts
10. Card Tricks
11. Question and Answer
12. Publicity Stunts
13. Patter and Presentation
You will need to read this book a few times and treat it as a reference book to get the most out of it. It goes into a lot of technical detail which can take a while to get your head around. I really don't want to go into detail and give any of the tricks and techniques away to you, you just have to read it. What I can say is, it is an essential book of mentalism.
Practical Mental Magic by Ted Annemann
Practical Mental Magic is written by Ted Annemann, one of the greatest mentalists of all time. He wrote a lot of books and articles for magazines. This book was put together after Anneman died and is based on magazine contributions which were seen as his very best work.
13 Steps is technical but this is even more so. It is necessary for mentalists and mind magicians to know the mechanics of each tricks and this book goes into a lot of detail as to how to create each trick. There are hundreds of tricks in the book such as mind reading tricks, book tests, card and money mentalism and a lot more. This is another necessary book for mentalists.
Mind Magic and Mentalism for Dummies
Mind Magic and Mentalism for Dummies is a book and DVD on mentalism written by James L Clark (MBA) and was released in 2012. The other 2 books in this review are quite old and seen as classic books, but that means some aspects of them dated for example using chalk boards. This book is right with the times.
This book includes a lot of different types of tricks. It teaches you about developing your on stage presence, how to do mind reading tricks, mentalism with cards and coins, predictions, cold reading and a lot more. This book is also suitable for beginners.