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Drawn In Review

Official Review

April 26th, 2012 2:05pm
Reviewed by Jeff Stone

For $63 bucks you get one of the coolest magic ideas I've seen in a really long time.

This ain't for everyone, for those it's "for," you are in for a serious treat. This has to be one of the coolest ideas in recent history. My experience has been that this is what to expect from Oliver Meech. He is a creative and clever guy always working to improve plot and presentation. This, in my mind, is his best effort so far and that's saying a lot, because his past offerings were excellent. Basically this is a presentation piece where you have a volunteer read a story - a choose your own adventure type of story. At the end of every page, the audience member chooses what the character in the book does next. Based on the spectator's decision, she turns to a different page in the book. Here's an excerpt from page one:

You could have sworn that doorway wasn't there a minute ago. Still, you jump at the chance to escape the dreary gallery tour. You slip away from the group, step gingerly over the "No Entry" sign and go through. A tap on your should makes you jump. You look down and see a short man with a tall safari helmet, crisp white suite and ivory cane."

"So, you want the alternative tour then?" he says. Relieved, you nod dumbly. He strides off down a gloomy corridor and you scurry after him.

"This wing houses Lord King's collection. A ruthless man, he loved only two things: portraiture and poker."

He taps a deck of cards in his pocket.

"So he hunted down portraits and named them after playing cards. There are 52 paintings in all, but what say we just find the perfect one for you?"


His can hits the edge of a spiral staircase.

"So, downstairs to the Black card portraits or upstairs to the Reds?" [He asks.]

If you say BLACK, turn to page 3.

If you say RED, turn to page 2.

. . . and so the story continues until you reach the end of the book. Don't worry; it's not as long as it sounds. The story only takes just a few minutes to read.

The story has a killer kicker ending that you have predicted ahead of time. The spectators can flip to other alternate endings in the book to see that the story could have ended very differently.

The book is clever from start to finish. The book is well produced and designed to code secret information with you in a very simple way that allows you to bring the story to a successful conclusion.

This is a real presentation piece and can be turned into a major production in your act with just a few props to bring the story to life. Or it can be done one on one in an intimate setting.

I wouldn't categorize this as a strolling piece per se, but even in that scenario you could likely pull it off.

This is one of those deals where I have to ask my readers to trust me. It's hard to explain this whole thing without giving everything away. The best I can tell you is that this one simple prop puts in your hands an incredible story presentation where you can have the story acted out in real life on stage or not . . . where you have an ending to a story that is both magical and creepy all at once. This is a beautiful piece of theater. I cannot recommend it highly enough for the serious performer.

Final Verdict:
5 Stars with a Stone Status of Absolute GEM!

Available at your favorite Murphy’s Magic dealer

Product info for Drawn In

Author: Meech, Oliver
Publisher: Lulu
Average Rating:  (1)
Retail Price: $64.00
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Manufacturer's Description:

A story like no other, set in a ghoulish gallery. Part twisted tale. Part interactive magic trick. Your audience decides how the story develops. At the freaky finale, you reveal that their choices were predicted from the start. Drawn In takes a powerful classic, the Invisible Deck, in an eerie new direction. Imagine if Stephen King was presenting the Invisible Deck and you're almost there. Perform it in stage, parlour or close-up situations; formally or informally; to one person or hundreds. It's easy to do - the book even simplifies the handling of the deck. The instructions are cunningly concealed in the Acknowledgements section at the back. Use in conjunction with any Invisible Deck (not supplied).

Oliver Meech is a magician and writer of the critically-acclaimed magic books The Plot Thickens and Plot Twists. His work has been described as "a breath of fresh air" by MAGIC magazine and "wildly creative" by Genii Online. He lives in London with his wife and pet toad.

Pages: 131 - 6" x 8" - Softcover

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