In a review of Robert-Houdin's book, The Confidences of a Prestidigitator, Dickens shares an interesting observation with his readers...
"Does anyone ever become great in an art without feeling a love and a vocation for it?
Robert-Houdin, the Ex-Quickfinger,... publishes to the world the instructive lesson that man becomes a magician only by patient labour; that the tree from which the enchanter's wand is culled is no other than obstinate persevering work, bedewed and nourished for years by the sweat of the brow."
From Salutations to Robert-Houdin by S.H. Sharpe, 1983