Joshua Jay is one of the great close-up magicians in the world. He’s performed everywhere — on The Today Show, on The Tonight Show, he’s fooled Penn and Teller, he’s coming off a two-year sold-out run in New York of his incredible show “Six Impossible Things.”

But you only begin to understand Josh’s love of magic when you see him sitting alone and just working with a single deck of cards. He practices shuffling, practices cutting the cards, works through any number of routines …

“Just the sight of a deck of cards brings me intense pleasure,” he writes. “It’s how I relax, and it’s also what excites me. It’s the lens that I see the world through.”

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Jen Kramer

There’s a famous book in magic called The Royal Road to Card Magic. It was written a long time ago by an Australian magician named Jean Hugard, and it is considered by many to be the essential book of card magic. It is a somewhat difficult book, filled with detailed instruction of precisely how to do various card tricks, flourishes, and so on. But it is also about a philosophy of performing magic.

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