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Tricks of the Mind

Tricks of the Mind

Book rating: 03 Paperback

By (author) Derren Brown

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  • Publisher: Channel 4 Books, a division of Transworld Publishers
  • Format: Paperback | 416 pages
  • Dimensions: 128mm x 198mm x 30mm | 280g
  • Publication date: 8 October 2007
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 1905026358
  • ISBN 13: 9781905026357
  • Sales rank: 932

Product description

Derren Brown's television and stage performances have entranced and dumbfounded millions. His baffling illusions and stunning set pieces - such as "The Seance", "Russian Roulette" and "The Heist" - have set new standards of what's possible, as well as causing more than their fair share of controversy. Now, for the first time, he reveals the secrets behind his craft, what makes him tick and just why he grew that beard. "Tricks of the Mind" takes you on a journey into the structure and pyschology of magic. Derren teaches you how to read clues in people's behaviour and spot liars. He discusses the whys and wherefores of hypnosis and shows how to do it. And he investigates the power of suggestion and how you can massively improve your memory. He also takes a long hard look at the paranormal industry and why some of us feel the need to believe in it in the first place. Alternately hilarious, controversial and challenging, "Tricks of the Mind" is essential reading for Derren's legions of fans, and pretty bloody irresistible even if you don't like him that much...

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Author information

Derren was born in 1971 in Croydon. It was a difficult birth - his mother was in Devon at the time. A precocious and puzzling only child, he liked to paint, foster obsessive habits and once set fire to a neighbour's boat by accident. Derren went on to study Law and German at Bristol University and fell in love with the city. This was a time when marriage between man and city was still frowned upon, so rather than face public derision Derren decided just to live there forever instead. During this time he began to perform magic in bars and restaurants, and gave occasional hypnosis shows. Then in 1999 he was asked by Channel 4 to put a mind-reading programme together for television, which became Derren Brown: Mind Control. Mind Controls 2 and 3 followed and then, in October 2003, Derren caused an international furore by playing Russian Roulette live on television. This secured his notoriety with the public and a big apartment in London. Further specials have followed - Derren Brown: The Seance was the most complained about show in the history of television. He still receives several letters of complaint a week from psychics and Christians. He is sensitive to everyone's objections but knows at least the latter group will forgive him. Derren lives in London with a large collection of taxidermy and a fatalistic parrot.

Customer reviews

By Mark Thwaite 10 Dec 2008 3

One of the best things about the unnerving, transfixing, magical Derren Brown is that he shows that his impossible-seeming acts are merely mind tricks. Brown, to quite stunning and bewildering effect, facilitates tricks that our own minds play on ourselves. And, by extension, Brown shows that paranormal, pseudoscientific, and supernatural occurrences are themselves just tricks of perception.
In Tricks of the Mind, Brown demonstrates that there isn't any real magic in what he does just exquisite showmanship, skill and psychology. Like a British James Randi, Brown debunks the notion that ghosts or ghoulies or ESP or spoon-bending are anything more than frauds and hoaxes. He shows how and why hypnosis works and how you can spot a liar. A radical, street anthropologist, Brown is a kind of expert on the type of human behaviour that con-men are out regularly to exploit. Know thyself -- read Brown!

Review quote

"Tricks of the Mind exposes Derren Brown as a master manipulator, with not a cauldron or genie in sight" New Statesman "Clearly the best dinner party guest in history - he's either a balls-out con artist or the scariest man in Britain" -- Charlie Brooker Guardian "If you see anybody with this book, go the other way" -- Hilary Mantel Guardian "Lifting the lid on some of the darkests secrets from the world of magic, Derren reveals with brutal honesty how some tricks work, how to perfect particular techniques and how to spot lies through people's behaviour. You'll be reading minds in no time! ****" OK! "Will delight anyone with an interest in the weirder things people think and they they think them" Independent on Sunday