A Book in English

A Book in English

It's not every day you get a book that fools you. In fact, it may never happen for most readers, including magicians. But A Book in English did just that -- and the trick is sitting right there on the cover.

I want to just copy and paste the description of the book from vendor's websites (who all copied it directly from the inside flaps of the book's dust jacket), because honestly it all describes the vibe the book gives. At the time of this writing, I've only seen a little bit of work from Woody. It has been good enough that I know exactly what kind of magician he is and remember his name, so that's something.

However, I didn't really own anything of his. And I didn't think to look for it either. And then I read about A Book in English in a footnote reference in another book. Upon looking it up, whoa. How has this book been out for this long and I haven't seen or heard of it yet? Why don't I own it yet?! Why hasn't it arrived yet, I just ordered it 12 seconds ago!!!

Joking aside, I dove through this book as soon as I got it (and yes, the trick that starts on the front cover got me good). Juan's introduction is amazing too. It sets the stage up so well that I had to continue. Hours flew by and before I knew it, I reached the end of the book. Yes, yes, I read without practicing what I was reading but I took notes on what I wanted to come back to!

At first, I actually thought the book was going to be more theory and principles and less tricks. The table of contents isn't shared anywhere I could find, and the descriptions I've seen say that there are articles and essays, theories, and mathematics. When I went through it though, my oh my were there a ton of fantastic tricks and effects in it! Yes, there are articles and essays. Yes, there's a whole section on math-based routines. But the routines, whoa! I've already picked out a handful to start practicing ASAP.

I do have two complaints about the book though. The first is the trick from the front cover. It's an amazing routine... but there's no reference to it in the book at all. What gives?! The second is the photos for the routines. They look like they were printed with charcoal and then someone tried to smear then off. If I squint really hard, I can make them out but otherwise, they're pretty useless. They aren't entirely necessary though, the descriptions of the routines are really well defined and easy to follow.

All in all, this book is definitely a keeper for the library!

Also, just check out what these guys have to say (directly from the back-cover of the book):

Woody has always amazed me and I admire the constant flow of ideas that, if you look carefully from above, you can see moving under his scalp. Ideas for incredibly practical sleights (his "Separagon"), ideas for effects, methods (the genius of his "Human Scale", a version worthy of a standing ovation, which I have seen many audiences give Woody as they are amazed and full of wonder after seeing him perform it) and ideas for the structures of acts and shows.
Juan Tamariz
Woody Aragón has officially raised the bar. Anyone worth their salt as a magician needs to have this book in their library.
Eric Jones
Woody Aragón's spelling routine is not just entertaining and creative, it's also commercial. This is the effect everyone dreams to create ... I can't believe he's teaching the effect he used to win so many awards!
Shawn Farquhar
Woody Aragón is a full-time professional magician in Spain. I like the way he thinks and I predict that you will be seeing his name much more in the near future. In fact, if you'll turn the page, I guarantee it.
Steve Beam

Now I'm not going to lie, I don't actually now the 3rd and 4th people above. I feel like I should, so I am making a note to do just that. However, I'm including the quotes here to show the wide variety of great feedback this book has received. After all, Steve Beam guarantee's it!

Where to buy?

Last I checked, you should be able to pick up A Book in English at Vanishing Inc. The last price tag I saw for this book was set at $49.95.

Buy at Vanishing Inc.

Contents of A Book in English

  • Nobody's fool! (by Juan Tamariz
  • Introduction to this work
  • Your other half

Sleights and moves

  • The Separagon
  • Cheekie Oil and Water
  • Separagon Triumph
  • The Wiper Move
  • Convex Control
  • Gabi's Deck Switch
  • The Breather Crimp
  • The Broken Corner
  • Card to Wallet
  • My Anti-Faro
  • The Swindle Shuffle

Tricks with any deck

  • Coincidences with incidences
  • The Cheerleader
  • Routined Spelling
  • Never tell them what's going to happen
  • Maverick
  • The Human Scale
  • Si Fry
  • Bored of Shuffling
  • Gilbreath Detective
  • Psychic Poker
  • Grandpa's Poker
  • Erdnase
  • Blessed Poker

Tricks with special cards

  • Do not get confused...
  • The Transparent Traveling Spots
  • Examinable Cannibals
  • Winner's Intuition
  • Clockwork Woody
  • The Psychic Deck

Sleight of math

  • Faro Shuffles and Factorial Dealing
  • On the Gilbreath Principle

The P.D.P. (Permanent Deck Principle)

  • The Permanent Deck Principle
  • ESP Memorized Deck
  • The Slot Machine
  • Postcards
  • The Court Cards
  • Gilbert's Error Code
  • Wait! There's still more!

Articles and Essays

  • An Interview
  • Theoretical Relativism
  • Regarding Mathemagic
  • Construction and Composition
  • My Masters


  • Woody's Change Box

Final Thanks

Ah, and in case you're wondering what the trick that starts on the front cover is (because the book doesn't actually tell you), it's Dai Vernon's Five Card Mental Force.

This book is written by and featuring the work of Woody Aragón. Mine is a hardcover copy published in 2011 with a total of 376 pages.