There are many ways to become better at gambling and many of them focus on practicing and learning from those who have more experience in this world than you do. However, one way that’s often overlooked is to read about gambling and to take those studies seriously.
There are numerous books being written on the subject matter and they approach the topic from all kinds of different perspectives. Here are a few that you should add to your reading list regardless of what your reading preferences are.
1. Molly’s Game by Molly Bloom (2014)
There are countless gambling books out there and it’s never easy to decide where to start. If you’re interested in gambling but also want to find a fun and interesting read that’s not oriented towards experts only, you should start with Molly’s Game.
It’s a story about an Olimpic skier that has started their own high roller VIP gambling game, which included some of the most famous names in the industry and many celebrities. Molly was known as the Poker Princess in California and there’s a reason why that’s the case.
2. Casino: Love and Honor in Las Vegas by Nicholas Pileggi (1995)
It’s probably one of the most popular books covering the topic of casino gambling but it’s also a fun and engaging story about the shady world of professional gambling and everyone that tends to get involved with it. Most notably this includes the Russian mafia, which is scary and exciting on its own.
The author is a crime report by trade and it shows in the way the book is written and researched. He had experience with reporting on organized crime in LA in the 70s and that experience meant a lot with writing the book.
3. A Man For All Markets by Edward O. Thorp (2017)
A lot of movies and TV shows are focused on the art of counting cards in a blackjack game. It can be an actual technique used to trick the casinos and this book goes into detail about it. It’s the autobiography of a mathematician that invented the practice.
It’s also about the life of a driven and brilliant person that becomes obsessed with finding a way to beat the casinos. The book does get a bit heavy when it comes to the math side of things.
4. Addiction by Design: Machine Gambling in Las Vegas by Natasha Dow Schüll (2012)
Everyone that ever set at a slot machine noticed how addicting they can be. Once you sit down you get immersed in the lights and the sensation and you can keep playing for hours. This is no accident and it’s made by design.
The book explains that this is no accident and that there’s a design behind the addicting nature of slot machines. It’s a fascinating tale about the mixture of science, psychology, and the gambling industry. The narrative really puts into perspective how helpless an individual gambler can be.
5. The Battle for Las Vegas: The Law vs. The Mob by Dennis N. Griffin (2006)
This book also focuses on the history of Las Vegas and especially the role the Mafia played in the creation of the city in the 1970s. Italian, Jewish, and Russian mobsters played a pivotal role in making Las Vegas a gambling capital of the world since it was an easy way for the mafia to launder money.
This book, however, looks at the issue from the standpoint of the police the Casino did from the standpoint of the Mafia and those connected with it.
6. Mensa Guide to Casino Gambling: Winning Ways by Andrew Brisman
There are many books about the mathematical side of gambling, but this one is the most comprehensive and it can be used to improve your betting and use the casino and its rules against the house. It’s however, a rather difficult read.
It recognizes that the house is always an edge and that there’s no way for a player to get around that. You can only improve your odds by knowing the rules and playing them to your advantage.
7. American Casino Guide by Steve Bourie
There are quite a lot of casinos in the US and it will take quite a lot of travel and dedication to visit them all. If you plan on doing such a thing, this is the book that will help you do so in the most organized way. It’s somewhere between a travel guide and a casino review.
The books are updated annually and new venues are added and removed all the time, so make sure to stay on top of things. It works with local authors and those who are in the know about the industry to provide the most comprehensive reviews out there.
8. The World’s Greatest Blackjack Book by Lance Humble
If you want a detailed book about counting cards and how it can help you get better at blackjack, this is the one. It doesn’t pretend that it’s easy to do so and that anyone can do it. The casinos are also looking for ways to stop the practice and the book covers that as well.
The book is a bit dense when it comes to all the information that it presents, but it’s very well written and it’s easy to follow even if you’re new to the subject matter.
A Word of Advice
Books about the industry are often fun and inspirational and they can even provide a pretty good education for a novice gambler. It’s important to keep in mind that no one book will help you win a gambling game or make you beat the casino.
If that’s what you’re looking for in these books, it’s best to let that go and keep reading as a source of entertainment and education. It will save you a lot of trouble in the long run if your plans don’t work out as you’ve planned.