Books about casino games

Books about casino games

When it comes to playing casino games, everyone is looking for that extra advantage to boost their chances of success. The thrill of winning at Blackjack, Poker or Roulette is one of the best feelings, so it’s no surprise that many casino experts have decided to share their knowledge and nous by writing books on their areas of expertise.

There are plenty of books written which delve into the details, history and strategy of various casino games. Let’s take a look at a few of the most popular titles.

Bringing Down the House, by Ben Mezrich

One of the most famous books concerning a casino game, Bringing Down the House tells the true story of the famous MIT Blackjack team, a group of students from Massachusetts Institute of Technology who deployed card-counting strategies to win big over a period of time at various different casinos.

We meet Kevin Lewis, a pseudonym for the real-life Jeff Ma, who was brought into the team’s fold in 1993. Although the book is listed as non-fiction, a lot of the events of the story are embellished or exaggerated. But this adds to the entertainment value of a quick, enjoyable read. Perfect for every Blackjack enthusiast.

Thirteen Against the Bank, by Norman Leigh

In Thirteen Against the Bank, Norman Leigh tells the story of how he and his team of Roulette players hatched a plan to systematically win large sums of money at the Roulette wheel in the Casino Municipale in Nice. The team were subsequently banned from every casino in France, despite not having broken any rules or cheated in any way.

Leigh does a fine job of portraying the thrill of this classic casino game, and you can really feel the flow of a roulette game in the way he describes his team’s success. This book will make you want to head out to your nearest brick-and-mortar casino and have a few goes at the roulette wheel yourself.

The Biggest Game in Town, by Al Alvarez

Famous poet and novelist Al Alvarez published The Biggest Game in Town in 1983, a detailed account of the 1981 World Series of Poker. The book offers in-depth description, insight and analysis of Poker’s biggest event, giving a flavour of what the WSOP is really like.

Alvarez also provides an interesting historical backdrop to the game of Poker as a whole, from the Las Vegas scene to the game’s impact in Europe and around the world. The author’s passion for Poker shines through, making The Biggest Game in Town a must-read for all casino fans.

Beat the Dealer, by Edward O. Thorp

Edward O. Thorp is one of the most famous and revered names in Blackjack, and is a member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame. He wrote Beat the Dealer in 1966, which achieved great popularity, earning a place on the New York Times bestseller list. The book details Thorp’s card-counting theories and strategies. Being a trained and practiced mathematician, Thorp had studied the probability involved in the game of Blackjack to devise a winning formula for consistent success.

Card-counting is frowned upon by casinos, and will often earn players a ban, even though it cannot be considered cheating since the game is not altered in any way by it. Blackjack is a game with rich history and lore, and Thorp’s book is very much a part of that.