Some Great Poker Reading

Thursday, July 21st, 2005, 12:44 pm

The World Series of Poker is over, and while ESPN’s coverage has just started perhaps you’re sorely in need of some quality poker stimulation. Pauly can’t liveblog from Bellagio, so there’s no way to find out if he took a piss next to Tobey Maguire. What to do?

The answer is simple: get thee to the nearest bookstore and buy a copy of Michael Craig’s book The Professor, the Banker, and the Suicide King. A few weeks ago I mentioned that I’d been sneak-reading it at Borders, but I’ve now completed it (actually twice) and it’s a must-read for the poker enthusiast.

I’ve written a full review and I’ll be posting the link to it when it appears, but for now just let me say that its just a fantastic book. It’s both the story of Andy Beal, a billionaire with a remarkable intellect and a formidable will, and of some of the world’s best poker players, including Jennifer Harman, Ted Forrest, Barry Greenstein, Todd Brunson, and Howard Lederer. No doubt you’ve heard about the ultra-high stakes games Beal played against the “Corporation”, but here’s the real story of what happened.

And that’s what makes the book so compelling–Craig did a lot of reporting to get that story, which has been the subject of some controversy on both sides. With the practice of journalism these days considered about as noble as, oh, necrophilia, it’s a pleasure to read a book that combines meticulous reporting with brilliant storytelling. Hopefully we’ll keep seeing more and more quality non-fiction about poker instead of strategy guides. Since most of us are beyond help anyway.

Like I said, I’ll post the link to my review when it posts. Until then, just trust me, and seek this book out.

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3 Responses to “Some Great Poker Reading”

  1. Donkeypuncher Says:

    I agree – it’s an amazing book. I have a whole new appreciation for Ted Forrest now.

  2. Pauly Says:

    I got a signed copy from Mr. Craig himself. It’s pretty good from what I read.

    I took a whiz next to TJ Cloutier. Does that count?

  3. Vodkashot Says:

    Couldn’t put it down either. Just crazy how the pros created this fairly major corporation on the fly so they could take on one guy.

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