7 Book Reviews About Beating the Odds in Vegas
While we don’t advocate cheating in the form of counting cards, or any other sort of unsavory activity, we do like to win, so learning all about how to play games in the most educated way is something worth reading about for us. Maybe you want to read about it, too. So here we submit to you seven books about the venerable game of Blackjack. A good review of some of these books will help you calculate the odds of winning – by estimating the chances by whether or not you’re willing to stick through the most technical mumbo-jumbo. Don’t worry – we did it for you already.
Edward O. Thorp
To be completely honest, this book is pretty much about card counting. You can still find some pretty good, legal tips that will help you understand how the game works. This book was published in 1966, so there have been lots of ideas on how to beat the house since then, but Thorp started it all with his scientific examination of the game. Plus, it’s got lots of cool stories in it about real-life situations. This is the book that started the “Basic Strategy” that anyone who plays the odds ought to know.
Blackjack Bluebook II – The Simplest Winning Strategies Ever Published
This helpful book contains a strategy chart and pictures that help show you exactly how different strategies work or don’t work. It gives you three card counting strategies, and gives you some ideas about how to outmaneuver other players. It also gives you some strategies that have reportedly never been in print, one called “The Nifty 15 Camouflage Hands.” How fun is that? Many seasoned players have found this book to be indispensable.
Blackjack Blueprint: How to Play Like a Pro…Part Time
This little gem is written by a fancy executive guy who plays for profit in his spare time. He used his 25 years of experience to put together this book to help other people win at blackjack. You could consider him to be an authority, since he’s managed to earn a seven-figure “spare time” income playing cards. Blaine gives the normal information about card-counting strategy, but also shares real life experiences that players consider valid.
Blackjack: Play Like The Pros
This book doesn’t cost a lot, but you get a lot of bang for your buck. It’s clearly written, easy to understand, and while it still gives you the information about card counting, it presents it in a very lucid way. Another thing this book does is tell you a little about how the casino functions from their side of the table.
This book is easy to read. It’s not bogged down with a lot of technical terms, so if you’re a “Weekend Warrior” or only want to know the basics to wow your friends at parties, this is a good book to read. It’s also a good starting point to find out if you’re ready for and willing to read something more technical. The information is easy to understand, and the author is pretty funny.
The Theory of Blackjack: The Compleat Card Counter’s Guide to the Casino Game of 21
Peter A. Griffin
This book with the unwieldy title is from a guy who probably hates the guy who came up with the names on The Family Guy. That notwithstanding, this book is considered to be THE definitive book for learning card counting strategies. It is based in pure math, and explains the game mathematically.
Blackjack For Blood: The Card-Counter’s Bible, and Complete Winning Guide
This book isn’t big on history or theory, but it’s absolutely down-and-dirty about technique and strategy. Many people say that it’s the only book you really need to get the job done. Carlson himself is a blackjack guru and he throws a lot of personal stories in there that give you a real picture of life as a big winner in a casino.
So those are our picks for books on beating the house. Do you know of others we should have included?
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