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on 14 March 1999
Amidst the hype of most blackjack authors, Miller is refreshingly candid: "His winnings are reputed to be in the hundreds." Casinos everywhere have modified rules and added decks, so systems published before 1995 are likely incomplete and/or obsolete. However, Miller isn't supplying a system. He supplies the mathematical underpinnings for analyzing card-counting systems. A mathematically-inclined reader can modify other systems' calculations and tables for six-deck shoes. Unfortunately, the results confirm the sad truth of gambling-as-business: the casinos read all the books, too, and have stripped down the player's edge. (To test this empirically, I suggest you purchase the MASQUE CASINO PAK software, and play as long as you want, using a six-deck shoe, 75% penetration, and whatever counting technique you prefer.) I haven't read Wong's PROFESSIONAL BLACKJACK, so I can't compare his mathematics to Miller's, but I found this book entertaining and useful -- for card-counting analysis, and for bursting hype-bubbles floated by other authors. To quote a friend and long-time big-stakes gambler: "You should only play if you enjoy it. The real point of the game is to play as long as possible before you run out of money."
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on 30 November 2000
Looking for an unbeatable card counting system? Look elsewhere. Looking for a math-heavy analysis of Blackjack and various counting strategies? You've found it. Be warned: If the thought of statistical math scares the pants off you, I would not recommend this book. However, if you are handy with stat-math then this is certainly an interesting read. It throws light on exactly WHY you lose, and shows how difficult it really is to put into effect a blackjack count-system which is actually possible for "mortals" to execute.
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