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The Miracle Mongers

Harry Houdini

Book Overview: 

A complete exposé of the modus operandi of fire eaters, heat resisters, poison eaters, venomous reptile defiers, sword swallowers, human ostriches, strong men, etc.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .London appearance was arranged for the same year; and at Mr. Laston's rooms, 23 New Bond Street, her performance attracted the most fashionable metropolitan audiences for a considerable time. Following this engagement she appeared at Richardson's Theater, at Bartholomew Fair, and afterwards toured England in the company of Signor Germondi, who exhibited a troupe of wonderful trained dogs. One of the canine actors was billed as the "Russian Moscow Fire Dog, an animal unknown in this country, (and never exhibited before) who now delights in that element, having been trained for the last six months at very great expense and fatigue."

Whether Girardelli accumulated sufficient wealth to retire or became discouraged by the exposure of her methods cannot now be determined, but after she had occupied a prominent position in the public eye and the public prints for a few seasons she dropped out of sight, and I have been unable to find where or how she passed the late. . . Read More

Community Reviews

I will confess, the sword-swallowing chapter made me a bit nauseous. Some of the “solutions” presented have also since been proven dangerous. Still an enthralling read.

Houdini was a fascinating character and it's certainly interesting to read his work. In this book, he provides a brief history of "miracle mongers" (performers of what we'd today consider to be side-show stunts like walking on hot coals or eating stones) and exposes many of their methods. His purpos

Houdini writes about the various acts of performers such as Fire Eaters, Fire Resisters, Sword Swallowers, Strong Men, and Poison Resisters that handle Snakes.

He describes the various performers and their acts in detail, many of acts he reveals how they are accomplished. While it is shown that the m

No wonder Harry Houdini wasn't well-liked by his peers in the profession of illusion. He rips the fake psychics to shreds and exposes their tricks. Back then mediums and seances were all the rage, and more than half believed in--this book caused an uproar and more than a little controversy.

Erik Weiss mejor conocido como Harry Houdini (1874 – 1926) fue sin lugar a dudas el mas grande escapsita e ilusionista dentro de la historia de la magia, gracias a sus impresionantes escapes logró realmente cambiar lo que se conocía hasta ese momento como magia, nadie puede negar que hay un antes y

When I was a kid I was obsessed with Harry Houdini, going through three stages from childish mystified hero-worship to mature intellectual respect. When other little boys were plotting their career paths as firemen, race car drivers, and cowboys, a PBS documentary on this man settled it for me. Stac

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