How do you know that wasn't a real person? I'm not saying you dont know I'm just wondering how you know. And if he did change the person's name or whatever and said he died in 2002 and he is still living that could be something symbollic or representative in the book, like maybe he retired in 2002 or maybe something like that. I mean I doubt he made that guy up, or changed someone else's name to that, but if he did there would be reason for it, or a point he would be making by doing that.
And I think Blaine is more talented than Angel because I don't think Angel can do much without spending a lot of money first on some kind of gimmick, at least not in comparison to what Blaine could do. But Blaine could never do a stage show like Angel could do either. You really can't compare the two, they both went to the opposite ends of magic.
I agree with the your second paragraph. They really are two different types of magicians. Comparing Angel and Blaine is like comparing Burton and Sankey. They do different types of magic.
Tarko the Great, which was featured on atleast one of Blaine's specials, is nothing more than Blaine dressing up as an old man. I made a thread awhile back talking about Tarquin's relationship with Blaine. It kind of gives a little information about why Blaine would do what I said he did. The reason Blaine did make Tarko the great up was because Tarquin threw a hissy fit. But I believe Blaine still wanted to give credit to Tarquin, so he made up a fictional character based on Tarquin.
But I think both Criss and David have made up somethings about their lives to make them seem more magical. Houdini also did it. So it's not like it's a very bad thing.