Francis Carlyle's HOMING CARD from the book Stars OF Magic

What The Audience Sees:

'This week Jamie did this amazing card trick! He had me pick a card, show it to everyone, and then put it back into the deck. He then said it would come to the top of the pack, but it didn't. He didn't seem too flustered, though, as he said this happens quite often, and that it probably flew to his pocket! We didn't believe him but, sure enough, he showed us that he did, in fact, have a card in there. And when we asked to see it's face- it was my card! He then said he would do it again and put the card back in the deck. We were watching him like crazy this time but, sure enough, it was in his pocket again! Incredible!'

How It Went:

A very good friend of mine taught this to me a few years ago and it wasn't until I saw him do it recently that I remembered how good it was. And it is quite good. It's clear, concise, and quite magical. The Magic Friday crowd seemed to like it a lot, as well. No one fainted or anything but I didn't have a single bad reaction. Overall, a winner.

Best Lines:

'Dude, that #$@# is $@#@$! up.'
'Do it again!...WHAT?!?!? How?!'

Angry Bob Rating:

I have a co-worker (Bob) whose uncle was a magician and thereby has a good working knowledge of how magic works. He's pretty grumpy but likes Magic Friday's because he can tell me how he figured out how the effect is done... A high rating means he'll never figure it out.

3/5. Angry Bob said, 'That's a good trick.' But if thought about it he could probably figure it out. I actually had one spectator tell me the method straight up, to which I replied (quite calmly I thought) "Actually, I'm sorry, no I didn't." He's the guy that said the, 'Dude..' line. Sometimes people will just throw out any explanation at random in the hopes of catching you off guard (and sometimes, by fluke, they'll guess right) but if you can state very calmly that they're incorrect then their bluff is called and they'll generally say something like, 'Well then I have no idea how you did it. That's incredible.'

Remain calm at all times! No matter what someone guesses (unless they physically saw something) they'll never know for sure. Don't crack, deny everything! lol.

My Rating:

This is a great trick I simply forgot about. I'm probably going to start using when I'm working so I'm going to say, 8.5/10. It really is a solid worker.

The JDG Tip:

Once the spectator returns the card to the deck and I have it "rise to the top", I name an indifferent card. If they chose the six of hearts, I'll look at the top card (no DL or anything), so that only I can see it and say, "Yup, it's on top alright. You chose the queen of spades." What this does is that it enables me to know what their card really is so that I can call it when I return to the pocket. After I've shown that a card is in my pocket and they ask to see it's face, I can now say, "What, you picked the six of hearts, right?" and pull it out.

Closing Thoughts:

I thought it might be fun to run some sort of contest so here's my challenge. We have a used book store here in town that has magic books in it from time to time. I'll go down there and buy the best book they have (in my opinion) on the day the answer is guessed and ship it off to the winner. Don't PM me the answer, though, because my box will probably fill up, so I'll start a thread in the Table Hoppers Thread titled Magic Friday Contest.

Here's the question. I should note that the contest is closed to friends of mine who already know the answer (I know who you are ;) ).

What is my occupation when I'm performing Magic Friday?


Jamie D. Grant



Debby Finneran said...

Hi. Francis Carlyle AKA Finneran was my husband's uncle. He only met him once when he was 10 yrs old. We are trying to find information on his life. Would love to talk to anyone who knew him. Thanks. Debby

Suzanne smith said...


Francis was my mom's brother - Dorothy Finneran- I met Framcis several times and his magic thrilled me as a kid. My mom was very fond of him. Your husband was his nephew?


Suzanne Smith

MikeF said...

Francis was my grandfather's brother, although I never met him since he passed away a few years before I was born. I dont have any information about him, besides what I have read on the internet in recent years.

Mike Finneran

Debby/Larry said...

Hi Michael. This is from Uncle Larry and Debby. Suzanne Smith wrote in Sept, 2011. Suzanne..if you get back on this blog, we met Candy Naughton about 15 (?) years ago in Vermont. Are you her cousin or her sister. Unfortunately...I can't remember if Candy was Alice's or Dorothy/s daughter. Larry Finneran's father was William...Dorothy's younger brother. Did you know the name of Uncle Francis' wife? Or the year they were married?...Hope to hear from you...Debby

Mary Finn said...

Francis was my uncle. He visited with our family on two occassions that I remember. He was fascinating! I remember that he was a twin - does anyone have any information about Matthew the older of the twins.
Mary Finneran
P.S. Debby who is your husband?

Mary Finn said...

Francis was my father's brother. I remember him visiting our family a few times when I was a child. He was fascinating! I also remember that he was the younger of twins. Does anyone have any information on Matthew the older twin?
Mary Finneran
P.S. Debby who is your husband?

Derek Verner said...

I am Dai Vernon's son and knew Francis well. Although he was a world class alcoholic he was as lovable inebriated as he was cold sober. His humor was even funnier when stoned. I even performed with him in a "muscle reading" act.

ropierre said...

Francis was my mentor, I was lucky enough to be a student of his for four and a half years. He was unbelievable!

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