Christopher, Milbourne: Milbourne Christopher's Magic Book
Tricks for the Living Room, Dinner Table, or Stage
1977 Milbourne Christopher; Published by Signet, New American Library. Original Hardcover Thomas Y Crowell Co. and in Canada by Fitzhenry & Whiteside Limited, Toronto
Paperback, Trade-size, 216 pages
              Christopher's Magic Book
Small Format Trade Paperback
Image from Magicref
              Christopher's Magic Book
Image courtesy e-Bay seller Sorcar-TWGM

Comments: This is a beginner's magic book for adults. The magic is mostly easy, with few sleights required. It is entertaining to read, and Mr. Christopher includes many stories from his magic career about himself or other magicians he has known. The book also includes many B&W photos from his travels including Max Malini, Johnny Carson, Paul Rosini, and others. Overall I didn't find the magic that strong so I wouldn't recommend hunting this book down for the magic, but the commentary is quite worth reading. Items with a * are those I found particularly appealing.


1 Magic and Magicians: essay on patter, preparation, recovery from mistakes and surprises, difficult audiences, pre-show preparation, originality, and deception & illusion

28 Ch 1: Direction and Misdirection
30 Paper Money*: quick and simple paper ball to dollar
32 A Word Appears: variation on above - a spectator's name appears on a crumpled paper
35 Bag To Bag: dollar bills in 1 bag, crumpled papers in another - transpose
37 Romany Deception: switch used by Gypsies to rip-off "customers"
38 Invisible Exchange: Done in the hands of two spectators
39 The Disappearing Ducks: anecdote of a bold move by Harry Blackstone, Jr., as a lesson in misdirection

41 Ch 2: Match Magic
41 The Leaping Flame: Burnt match reignites
42 The Magnetic Match: 1 match touched to another causes it to leap
42 Homing Match: A group of matches are removed from a book, burnt match returns to the packet
45 Match Stickler: version of above, only one is removed from book, but is burnt
45 Four Times Ten: Three puzzles followed by a multiplication of matches
47 Undercover Operation*: Coin appears between two matchbook covers
49 Flame to Silk: How to fold the silk
51 Two On a Match*: a match is split into two to light 2 cigarettes
52 A Striking Trick: 2 matches rubbed together lights one match
52 Inexpensive Lighter: Matchbook pulled from pocket with one extruding match already lit
53 The Heavy Match: Magician determines which of 5 matchbooks was opened

56 Ch 3: Handkerchief Hocus-Pocus
56 Up in Flames: Burnt but not damaged handkerchief (for pyros!)
58 Indestructible Handkerchief: Handkerchief burnt and restoration fails a couple of times before full restoration
61 The Rival Magician: You do as I do burnt handkerchief. Magician burns spectator's handkerchief and restores it, spectator burns magician's handkerchief but fails in restoring, the magician succeeds, though.
63 Fast and Loose: Dissolving knot
64 Six Ends: Appears to have 6 ends
64 Slipknots: another knot dissolve
65 Unlinking the Chain: using a chain of 6 knotted silks
65 Tied and Untied Instantly: knot dissolves, reapers, and dissolves again
67 Imagination: silks at the fingertips
68 Expansion: small silk expands to large, used for corporate magic promotion
69 Perfect Color Reproduction: silk blend

73 Ch 4: Money Magic
73 Suddenly - Silver: half dollar rolls out of a folded bill
74 Paying the Bill: Variation, produce cash from the lunch bill
75 Rapid Banking: yet another variation, produce cash from a check
75 Instant Cash: yet another cash from credit card
76 The Alchemist's Secret: Dime vanishes from match box, appears under cards. A lesson in presentation by Arthur Cowan
78 Fivefold Surprise: Paper folded turns into $5 bill (switch, no TT)
79 Multiplying Bills: One bill turns into 6 bills after magician pulls up his sleeves
79 Coin Conversion: Silver dollar changes to bill, plus advertising idea
81 Silver to Copper: penny and dime transpose at fingertips. Uses uniquely made gimmick coins
82 Transposition: variation using the same gimmick. Penny & dime in match box and hand transposition
83: Invisible: variation. Quarter in match box transfers to pocket but turns into 25 pennies...whoops! Only 24! Last penny is found back in the box.
85 Expensive Smoke: Corner torn from bill, bill is burnt, bill is found in the cigarette (real bill is not burnt)
88 The Shrinking Dollar: A crumpled bill appears to shrink
88 Poker Chip Conjuring: Move to apparently show both sides of three chips, but only show one side of two of the chips
89 Color Changing Chips: Red chips turn blue, then red, yellow, and blue
89 Spirit Message: A message appears on a chip
90 Chip Passe Passe: Red and blue chips transpose to match the "leader" chip

93 Ch 5: Mental Magic
94 Crystal Choice: Spectator looks through a crystal ball, and at "stop" command reads the word seen, which matches a previous prediction
95 Water Divination: variation of above using a glass of water
96 Concentrate on a Card: 20 spectators write card names on papers. Magician selects one paper and one card, and gets a match!
98 Think of a Distant City: Audience names many cities, one is selected, and matches prediction.
99 Think of a Ball Player...: Variations of above
99 Forgery While Blindfolded: Dr. Stanley Jaks blindfold act
101 Design Projection: Christopher Milbourne's version
102 The Predestined Number: magician predicts the number of cards that will be found face up
103 Seeing Through Metal: Magician views the color of a ball inside a metal index card box
104 For a Single Spectator: variation in the handling of above.
104 Uri Geller's Handling: An anecdote
105 Geller's Watch Trick: Watch hands move while the watch is held face down in spectator's hand
106 Concentrate on a Color: A color card is held up, and magician determines the color (mirror!)
106 Super Psychometry: Magician matches envelopes to each person who submitted them
108 Shoe Clue: Identify people by their shoes (while blindfolded)

110 Ch 6: Two Person Telepathy
111 Card Imagery: Code for determining selected card
112 Color Code: code for determining colors
113 Presidential Choice: variation of above
113 Tune Telepathy: for songs
115 Telephone Telepathy: Doing the same over the phone
115 Telltale Voice: Another over the phone effect. Person knows the chosen card when the spectator names all the cards in a packet.

119 Ch 7: Book Tests
119 Psychic Vision: Spectator opens book of poetry and reads. Magician, who was out of hearing, takes book in to a corner and reads from the same page.
120 Telethought: Magazine is riffled through and spectator yells STOP. He reads the left hand page and the magician devines what was read. (Uses gimmicked magazine)
121 Paperback Book Test: Version of above using a paperback book
122 Four Book Variation: Four books tossed to the audience. The 4th is used as above to determine page number, and then lines from all 4 books are read.
124 Novel Telepathy*: Clever coded book allows magician to divine words on the pages of three other books turned to the named page number.
129 One Word Among Thousands: Magician flips through a book asking the spectator to note a page number. He correctly states the first few words on the page (totally impromptu)

131 Ch 8: Conjuring With Cards
133 Scarne's Controlled Choice: A subtle force that doesn't seem like a force
134 Sealed In: Card in envelope transposes with another card (double face)
137 Ping Pong Plus Cards: Selected card ends up stuck on ping pong paddle (variation of Card on Wall)
140 Change or Coincidence*: A clever Jumbo card effect. 5 Jumbo cards are displayed with backs to the audience. Small card chosen by spectator matches a numbered Jumbo card. With "outs".
142 Riffle Glimpse (Hugard): A simple location
144 Crimp Cut: locating a card
145 The Spinner: Deck case is tossed up, the selection remains in the magician's hand
146 Pack Penetration: variation with rubber band around deck
146 The Stick-Up: Thrown at a magazine, ends up at the back of the magazine
148 Shooting a Card to a Wall: card sticks to a board when shot at by a blank gun
148 Sleight of Foot: Two selections end up in the magician's shoe.
149 Card on Windowpane: Card ends up on the OUTSIDE of the window pane
151 The Sensitive Finger: Magician moves the spectator's finger over the table-spread cards and lowers onto the previously made selection
152 Card and Balloon: selected card appears in popped balloon.
154 Infallible Prediction: Spectator chooses 1 of 2 cards. Magician has properly predicted it!

157 Ch 9: Rope Mysteries
158 Slippery Square Knot: Dissolving knot
160 Camel or Dromedary?: Double Loops change to one
160 The Finger Fling: Rope looped on the thumb only quickly becomes looped around finger & thumb
162 Thumb Penetration: Rope is pulled through the thumb
164 Instant Overhand Knot: Knot is tied with one hand
166 Watch!: variation of above where a watch is tied within the knot
166 Two Instant Knots: another variation
166 Throwing a Knot: another instant knot
168 Bracelet from Rope: Bracelet pulled off rope, the rope remains
169 Knotted Bracelet Release: Bracelet is double knotted, ends are held by spectator, yet it is pulled free
171 Through The Wrist: variation
172 Looping the Loop: Knot appears and vanishes
173 Together Again: Cut and restored with a gimmicked tube
174 Stretching a Rope* (Milbourne Christopher): short rope is stretched to 10 times its length
175 Multiplying Rope: coil of rope duplicates itself to two
177 Super Stretch: As above, but using a rope that is examined at the start
179 Stretching a Ribbon: using a ball gimmick
179 Presenting Rope Magic: Tips on rope magic. Use white rope, dark jacket, etc.

183 Ch 10: Magic for Youngsters
183 Ronald Rabbit: How to build a Rabbit prop to produce 2 cards at the ears
187 Forgetful Freddy: How to build. His head is removed and replaced by a balloon. When balloon is popped, his head is back. With story line.
189 Santa's Suit: How to build a Santa in underwear who regains his suit
192 Popsicle: An ice cream pop makes a popping sound

194 Ch 11: Miscellaneous Magic
194 The Floating Pen: Nice gimmick works even through hanky ('glues' to hand, doesn't float)
197 The Suspended Wand: variation using a wand
197 The Taped Lesson: Dye tube silk change with funny "magic lesson" patter
200 A Choice of Cassettes: Choice of 5 tapes, magician predicts which music will be selected
200 Vanishing Smoke: Instant smoke from a bottle (good for bar magic)
201 Dwindling Smoke: More smoke in the bottle magic
202 Sensitive Newsprint: A 'dowsing rod' strip of newspaper
203 Dowsing Sticks: some tips
205 Friendly Spirits: In a cabinet held by the magician. Clever use of a fake hand.
208 Quick-Change Illusion: Magician's outfit changes in an instant, his shadow seen throughout.
209 Female to Male: variation of above.
209 Picture to Life: Picture of a man becomes live! (double)
212 The Martian Mystery: variation of the above with a martian.
213 Twentieth-Century Sawing: How the effect works
214 The Invisible Magician: Black art