The Bullet Catcher’s Handbook

The Bullet Catcher’s Handbook is a collection of sayings, aphorisms and technical knowledge accumulated by travelling conjurors. Being the product of many different authors in different centuries, the entries vary widely in style. Some seem to be transcriptions from an early oral tradition, possibly medieval in origin. Others belong to the Golden Age of stage magic.

Selected entries are reproduced below.

Nothing excites a crowd more than seeing a man who they have already witnessed making a mistake going on to attempt the bullet catch. (TBCH 2:12)

Without story, your illusion is but trickery and hoax. With story it is transmuted into magic. That is the greatest trick of all. (TBCH 2:31)

To perform the impossible is to show that you have mastered trickery. But to perform the improbable is to leave a suspicion of genius. (TBCH 4:3)

There was once a line marked out by God, through which were divided Heaven and Hell. And thus was chaos banished from the world. The Devil created lawyers to make amends. They argued the thickness of the line until there was room enough within it for all the sins of men to fit. And all the sins of women too. (TBCH 1:1)

Reproduced from The Bullet Catcher’s Daughter.

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  • Introduction

    Aspects of the Gas-Lit Empire are laid out in these pages for your perusal. Here are maps, monographs and mysteries. Here also you may follow clues through the maze of its streets and alleyways. Hidden stories await the perceptive eye.