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From the Foreward
One of the most powerful weapons in the arsenal of an experienced card-worker is the pre-arranged or "stacked" deck. Some of the most amazing feats in card magic make use of some form of deck pre-arrangement.
Many magicians avoid using a stacked or pre-arranged deck because they feel it is often too difficult or time consuming to prepare their decks beforehand. Others feel that to use a stacked deck is to somehow "cheat". They forget that the object is to surprise, mystify and above all to entertain those for whom they are performing. Some, if not all, of the greats in close up card magic have occasionally "stooped" to employing a stacked deck.
In almost every book on card effects there will be one or more effects that are based on the pre-arrangement of at least a few cards, sometimes the entire deck.
Often the set-up can be performed impromptu while performing a prior effect or while apparently examining or toying with the cards. All of the effects included in this work will use some form of a stacked deck. Hence the title of this work. Some of the stacks will be lengthy and cannot be done impromptu and must therefore be set-up prior to the performance. This usually requires that particular effect be the first card trick performed or as a "stand-alone" effect. Or perhaps the stacked deck can be switched in at the appropriate moment.
When performing with a "stacked" deck, the entertainer is usually free from worries about sleights that might go wrong or a gimmick that won't "do its thing" at the proper moment. He can concentrate his efforts on his performance. His full attention can be given to achieving the intended effect.
A quote from Harry Lorayne:
"It has always been part of my philosophy of card magic to perform an easy, almost non-sleight-of-hand routine and make my audience think I was the most fantastic card handler they've ever seen."
Another quote - this time from Eugene Burger:
"A stacked deck is a happy deck!"
About the Author
Lewis R. Brooks was born in New Jersey in 1938. His first exposure to magic was by his Boy Scout Master who was a part-time semi-pro magician. Mr. Brooks gave his first paid magic performance at the age of 16 for $ 10.00 which in those days was not all that bad.
In his 3rd year of High School Lewis became interested in HAM radio and earned his General Class Amatuer Radio Operator's license.
In 1955 he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force and because of his prior experience and knowledge of radios he was trained as a VHF/UHF radio maintenance technician. Upon leaving the Air Force in 1958 Mr. Brooks continued his love with magic.
In 1962 Lewis made his first parachute jump and was immediately "hooked". He continued jumping and by 1965 had made over 200 free-fall jumps and was awarded the "Expert Class" license by the U.S. Parachute Association.
During this period, he also became interested in the martial arts, and in 1971, was awarded a Black Belt in Shotokan Karate.
Also in 1971 he was introduced to a visiting skydiver from Italy who wanted to take advanced free-fall lessons. She became his favorite student and in 1974 they were married in an aircraft flying above their drop-zone and then celebrated by jumping together and landing amid the spray of Champagne bottles held by their friends in the target area.
Shortly after this Mr. Brooks stopped jumping having amassed over 1100 free-fall jumps. Mr. & Mrs. Brooks then moved to Nevada and proceeded to raise a family.
Mr. Brooks has three children. A son who is a medical technician and lives in New Jersey and has given Lewis three grandsons. Lewis has two other children, both graduates of the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, and who are both currently Officers and on active duty in the military.
His daughter is in the Navy and is a Flight Officer who flies F-14 Tomcat fighter aircraft. His son is in the Marine Corps and is at present receiving jet fighter pilot training.
Since moving to Nevada in 1974, Mr. Brooks has been employed in various capacities in the casino industry. Some of the positions held include games dealer, pit boss, surveillance operator, and casino executive.
Mr. Brooks retired in 2000 and is now living in Las Vegas and is an active member of the local Wednesday night magician's get-together.
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