Recently, I received my copy of the “Encyclopedia of Playing Card Flourishes” by Jerry Cestkowski. The Encyclopedia is a collection of flourishes, categorized, described, and demonstrated. In short, I consider this one of the best purchases I have made with regards to my card education. By the way, the book is a true encyclopedia weighing in at several pounds with over 500 pages and thousands of photos. If you ask nicely, Jerry might even sign the book before he ships it to you.
The book is a phenomenal effort, with detailed written descriptions and a plethora of detailed photos, making each cut, fan, spring, move completely within reach given practice and dedication. By no means are many of the moves easy. Littered throughout the text are fun, comical tidbits and commentaries making what would be a dry read substantially more palatable as a book/read.
The teaching is really top notch, with a detailed description, many many tips and comments to help you avoid pitfalls and find short cuts, along with the photos, learning is really not a problem and truly attainable, it really is just a matter of practice (which will take a long time, I think the younger you are and looser your fingers the easier everything will be, for those of you starting out as adults like me… it will be rough).
A break down of the chapters, to get an idea of the content is as follows:
A full T.O.C can be found on the main site
- One-Hand Single Cuts
- One-Hand Multiple Cuts
- Springs and Drops
- Two-Hand Single Cuts
- Two-Hand Multiple Cuts
- Two-Hand Shuffles
- One-Hand Shuffles
- Deck Flips, Twirls and Spins
- Table Flourishes
- Throwing and Juggling
Jerry, was kind enough to sign the book as well.
Beyond the content, Jerry put forth a wonderful work, which will likely become a classic and belongs on anyone’s shelf who is serious about cardistry, flourishing, and card magic.