Poker Through the Eyes of an Amateur

February 14, 2006

Reading Material

I have a very awesome wife. For Valentine's Day this year, she got me two great books. The first one is Just a Geek by Wil Wheaton. I love Wil's writing, and I was going to pick this one up myself. She beat me to it, though. I'm sure Wil will also be thrilled that my wife got me that for Valentine's. :-)

The second book is Phil Gordon's Little Green Book. This one is a staple of many poker players' libraries, and I'm sure many of you have this one. However, for those who don't, I will be posting a review of it as soon as I finish it. I'll be taking it on my ski trip this weekend to fill the down time when I'm not on the slopes.

I'm curious as to what other books you guys have in your libraries. What do you recommend? I've heard that Harrington on Hold'em is a good tournament strategy book. What else is out there?


  • My Most Recommended:
    SuperSystem 1 & 2
    Harrington on Hold'em
    Little Green Book
    The Theory of Poker - Sklansky
    Ace on the River

    Also Good:
    Killer Poker & Killer Online Poker - Vorhaus (especially if you need a lesson in agression at the tables)
    Caro's Book of Poker Tells
    and you should read Hellmuth's books - just so you know what others have read and what they might be basing their strategy on.

    For poker-related reading:

    My very favorite is Bobby Baldwin's Winning Poker Secrets. Awesome tale, I am going to be doing a review on that soon.

    Also, The Professor, the Banker, and the Suicide King.

    I could go on for days, but I will let someone else pick some!

    By Blogger Joanne1111, at 2/14/2006 10:14 AM  

  • Thanks for the recommendations, Joanne! I don't know how I could have left out Brunson's SuperSystem series. Ace on the River Is Greenstein, right? That's definitely quite the starting list and should keep be busy for quite a while.

    By Blogger Matt Silverthorn, at 2/14/2006 10:40 AM  

  • I love the little green book, made me look at Phil much differently.

    By Blogger SirFWALGMan, at 2/14/2006 11:11 AM  

  • My library:

    Recommended books I have read:

    Inside the Poker Mind
    Small Stakes Hold 'Em
    Ace on the River
    Weighing the Odds in Hold 'Em
    Theory of Poker
    Harrington On Hold 'em Vol I & II
    Seven Card Stud for Advanced Players
    Kill Phil

    Decent Books:

    Professional Poker

    Books I have read that suck:

    Championship Omaha
    Pot-Limit and No-Limit Poker

    Books I haven't read yet:

    Super System II
    Caro's Book of Poker Tells
    Hold 'em Poker by Gary Carson
    Tournament Poker for Advanced Players
    High-Low Split Poker for Advanced Players
    Hold 'Em Poker for Advanced Players
    Winning Texas Hold Em

    By Blogger Wes, at 2/14/2006 1:20 PM  

  • Last 10 books read:

    # Positively Fifth Sreeet
    # Super System 2
    # Strangers To Ourselves
    # Games People Play
    # Telling Lies
    # Blink
    # Harrington on Hold 'em (Vol 2)
    # I'm A Stranger Here Myself
    # Busting Vegas
    # Making of a Poker Player

    Currently reading Ace On The River

    By Blogger Slimeface, at 2/14/2006 10:42 PM  

  • I loved the Little Green Book, and I'm halfway through Harringtons first book. I plan on reviewing both of them eventually.

    So far Harringtons is my favourite because he shows all these examples of situations and quizzes you on what the correct move would be. It's a great way to learn.

    By Blogger huma, at 2/15/2006 12:55 AM  

  • Thanks for the input, Huma. I think I will pick up that book next, then, since that is one of the ways that I learn things best.

    For the others who have also responded, do any of the other books you have read present information in this fashion? I always enjoy reading discussions on specific hands.

    By Blogger Matt Silverthorn, at 2/15/2006 8:36 AM  

  • I would like to add "Tales from the Tiltboys" to the list - while it's not a book about poker/strategy/etc it's a fun book to throw in between reading "the heavier stuff"...

    It sure made my laugh on every other page, especially as I hadn't read all the trip reports etc prior to reading the book...

    By Anonymous Ingoal, at 2/15/2006 11:25 AM  

  • What a wifey! On the books, I've only read Harrington Vol 1, but I totally agree with Huma. It's great and Dan puts all these quiz or example hands into the chapters. The best part is that he not only tells you how it should be played, but he tells you how they actually were played and what the results were. Great stuff.

    By Blogger iamhoff, at 2/15/2006 12:49 PM  

  • Hey Matt.

    I could not say enough about SuperSystem (volume 1 was much more useful than volume 2 in my book, no pun intended). Also, both volumes of Harrington's books are absolutely Top Notch, both in the examples he gives and in the philosophy and other explanations provided by the author. Definitely a must read for any serious tournament holdem player.

    Other than Doyle and Dan's books, I really liked Phil Hellmuth's Holdem book as well, something which surprised me since I find him to be such an abject tool of a man. I also thought Cloutier & McEvoy's Championship Pot-Limit and NL Holdem book to be helpful, albeit not as much so as Doyle or Dan's books.

    Positively Fifth Street is a really great read, but not for poker instruction so much as for just a really great poker story.

    I got nothing out of Doyle's Wisdom of a Poker Champion, nor did I find "The Zen of Poker" or "The Pyschology of Poker" to be anything but gibberish when it came right down to it. Just my two cents. Read Doyle's Holdem chapters in SuperSystem, and read Harrington's Holdem books (both volumes), and you've got right there more book knowledge than you should ever need as far as improving your poker game.

    Oh yeah, and be a man this time and play in the Thursday night WWdN. A little late start to a tournament that won't take more than 2 hours to complete in any event is nothing. What's 1:30am when compared to winning a tournament in front of all of your friends and colleagues? Come on man.

    By Blogger Hammer Player a.k.a Hoyazo, at 2/15/2006 5:45 PM  

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