I got into magic from Criss Angel, I'm surprised he isn't one of the choices.
I was always interested in magic. Made a point of finding out when David Copperfield would have his yearly special. Had books like " The Art of Magic" by T. Nelson Downs...etc.. But I never really explored Magic until we went shopping for a Birthday present for my niece. She always loved Magic as well...seemed to run in the family. We got her a magic set... cannot recall at this point which it was, and i got to talking with the salesperson...
I asked about " Card Tricks". Ya shows how little i knew at the time. And he hooked me up with the first 3 Volumes of Ammar's Card Miracles... this was on VHS... Pre DVD.
I took it home, and learned about the DL, The Elmsley Count, Double Undercutting...etc I was like.." WoW..."
I think that Michael Ammar is more than likely one of the best instructors i have had the pleasure of learning from. And always find myself recommending his stuff. My last purchase was his Complete Cups and Balls. If you ever intend of doing this...you need to get this.