“No sleight of hand, just practical miracles.”
“Worth its weight in gold if you want to learn the real secrets of magicians—showmanship.”
Steve Cohen has a degree in psychology from Cornell, but the world knows him as the Millionaires' Magician, the master illusionist who performs at luxury hotels in New York, London, and Tokyo. In Win the Crowd, Cohen shows how anybody can use magicians' techniques to take charge of "real world" situations like workplace disagreements and social occasions. He gives readers an attention-grabbing tutorial on commanding a room; reading your audience; creating misdirection; and creating a magical moment.
Who knows better than a magician how to captivate an audience? As Cohen (who calls himself the Millionaires' Magician-an indication of who his audience is) notes, "[M]agicians are masters at attracting interest, holding attention, and leaving audiences with fond memories of their time together." Demystifying the psychology of magic in clear, pithy prose, he explains how to use a magician's tricks to make better, more winning presentations. Cohen distills five "Maxims of Magic": Be Bold; Expect Success; Don't State-Suggest; Practice, Practice, Practice; and Be Prepared. This may be familiar territory, but Cohen's advice has a magician's spin (including how to perform some tricks). For example, to practice being bold, he suggests dropping a quarter surreptitiously into someone's pocket. The magician's preparation and presentation also include creating a compelling character and making a magical entrance to command a room. Cohen also discusses the power of specific word patterns, how to discern unconscious but visible responses in listeners and the use of misdirection. Readers gain insight on how magicians lead and read people, so that how a magician figures out what card you drew from the deck becomes clearer. This thoughtful and charming guide should win a crowd of readers. Agent, Jennifer Joel. (June) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
"How To Win Fans and Influence People" could be the alternate subtitle of this entertaining and inspirational self-help book by Cohen, the "Millionaires' Magician," who performs weekly at New York City's Waldorf-Astoria hotel. For Cohen, the key to success lies in being so self-confident and charismatic that audiences will believe the illusion he's created without feeling manipulated. So that readers may apply his secrets to business and daily life, he introduces "The Maxims of Magic": be bold; expect success; don't state-suggest; practice, practice, practice; and be prepared. These are supplemented with techniques used by performing artists, including preparing one's body and mind for performance, getting a responsive audience before speaking a word, and using persuasive speech patterns. With a focus on presentation, Cohen shares entertaining anecdotes of past performances and explains a few sleight-of-hand tricks. Conjuring may not be everyone's cup of tea, but Cohen's advice is worth noting and passing to others. Recommended for self-help and public speaking collections in public libraries.-Lucille M. Boone, San Jose P.L., CA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.