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To Bid or Not to Bid: The LAW of Total Tricks [Paperback]

Larry Cohen , Karen McCallum
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

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Paperback £8.65  
Paperback, Nov 1997 --  

Book Description

Nov 1997
To bid or not to bid -- the perennial dilemma in competitive auctions. The easy answer to the question lies in the correct use of the Law of Total Tricks. The LAW has been part of bridge literature since the 1950s, but it was in this book that Larry Cohen brought it to the attention of the majority of bridge players. Still the most lucid explanation of the LAW ever published, this is a book that every bridge player needs to own, to read, to re-read, and to study in order to improve his results.
--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

Product details

  • Paperback: 285 pages
  • Publisher: Natco Press,U.S.; New edition of Revised edition edition (Nov 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0963471503
  • ISBN-13: 978-0963471505
  • Product Dimensions: 21.5 x 14 x 1.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,330,518 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

From the Author

Complete explanation of the Law of Total Tricks
This is the best-selling bridge book of the 1990's. It starts at the very beginning and explains what the Law of Total Tricks is, and how to use it while bidding a bridge hand.

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Modern Classic 4 Jun 1999
By A Customer
The law of total tricks has been around for about 40 years, but it's never been as thoroughly and completely explained as in this book. Cohen shows how the law should be used to resolve your competitive bidding decisions and to make the opponents' life more difficult. He also shows how modern bidding, and how the conventions he developed with Marty Bergen, try to give your partnership the information you need to make total trick decisions. Simply the best book on the subject.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
By Roger
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase

The book describes a widely-known bidding method known as the Law of Total Tricks. In 2008 I wrote a review, giving it 5 stars. But, having used it for a while, and with the passage of time, I've learnt better.

The method is deceptively attractive, in that it appears to be an easy way of automating one's bidding - removing the need for judgement. It has been very popular. Unfortunately it is a bit like the talkative gambler or fisherman - entertaining and impressive when it pays off, but quickly forgotten when it doesn't.

I've now read a book by Mike Lawrence, his full critique of the Law of Total Tricks ("I Fought the Law of Total Tricks"). With the help of computers to evaluate thousands of hands the book provides convincing evidence that two of the law's most basic principles are incorrect. It also demonstrates that, on many types of hand, that the law is correct on less than 50% of occasions.

I suggest you familiarise yourself with Lawrence's work (Google it) before parting with money on this one.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How can you do better? 23 July 1999
By A Customer
If your bridge library were extremely small, one MUST item would be The Law of Total Tricks. It's a gem, one that will change the way you think at bridge and one that will help you make those tough part-score and higher competitive decisions which are ordinarily such "guess work". This book will help you evaluate your bidding options with much greater assurance and accuracy.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Chapter one and two are essential 1 Jan 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am still struggling with this game after a year............. this book takes a different approach to bidding, which is useful for beginners/intermediates, just working through the basics, there are lots of examples which clarify some bids, I find this very useful, just wish more of it would rub off!
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3.0 out of 5 stars Like it but ... 30 Dec 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A common problem at the bridge table is deciding how high you can safely compete to in the competitive auction. The STYLE - its odd to see CAPITALS used to shout important statements at READERS but maybe that's the American way - is to SAY THE LEAST, irritating ... there are other issues of presentation and layout you may find annoying.

Difficult at the bridge table are those times when opponents get busy or pre-empt - personally I always feel as if I am dealing with each situation individually with little to guide me. This book is a useful guide to those situations providing a scientific basis for action and well worth buying - but there is no easy fix for thinking.

During auctions (good) players assess there hands using points, LTC, looking at there intermediates, gauging distribution, listening to the bidding or lack of it, imagining hands, adjusting according to controls held and other methods, eyeing the opponents (no ... not that way!) - The law of total tricks provides one additional tool to guide you in a competitive auction ... but it should be used in conjunction with your assessment of opponents, the rest of the field, etc.

If you are new to the total tricks principles then "Control the bidding" by Paul Mendelson is possibly a better book to start with - and I think one that is of greater use in the competitive auction ... (but still collating the comparative evidence)
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