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Big Deal: One Year as a Professional Poker Player Paperback – 5 Sep 2002

4.5 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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  • Big Deal: One Year as a Professional Poker Player
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  • One of a Kind: The Rise and Fall of Stuey 'The Kid' Ungar, the World's Greatest Poker Player
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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Abacus; New Ed edition (5 Sept. 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0349115192
  • ISBN-13: 978-0349115191
  • Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 2.3 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 265,742 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

A very good book and an important addition to the literature of gambling (David Mamet)

A remarkable odyssey - part Damon Runyon, part Dostoevsky (VANITY FAIR)

The best book about poker I've ever read (Walter Matthau)

BIG DEAL is the classic book on big stakes poker. Praised from high and low, all players love this book, and all those wannabes, dreaming of raking in that monster pot, will eat it up (IRISH TIMES)

Book Description

* 'Vivid, engrossing, superb...the best description of world-class poker we've been given' - Salman Rushdie

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Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The problem with this book is that it might tempt you to abandon home, friends and family and board the next flight to Vegas, with your life savings crammed into a back pocket. Of course, for nearly all of us this would end in a real and total disaster, but Tony Holden has written so fluently and alluringly about a world of fast action, little sleep and high rolling that it's difficult not to want to give it a shot.
'One Year as a Professional Poker Player' gives you all the plot details you need, and what you get is a captivating description of high stakes Texas Hold'em played across the world, in some fairly odd places, with some fairly odd (and fascinating) people. We'd all expect poker pros to be 'characters', idiosyncrasies with attachments to outrageous hats and horrific jewellery, and the truth according to Tony Holden is frighteningly close to the stereotype. You won't read this book and ever forget who Amarillo Slim is. But there's more to them than the garish ostentation and madcap tales - there's the camaraderie, the mutual respect, the total ruthlessness at the table, the psychological secret weapons...
Tony Holden's a man with an ego, there's no doubt about that. But the great thing is he knows this more than anyone. And it's difficult not to take a liking to a man who's being that candid and straightforward with you as he recounts his journey through the world of professional poker, tells of big hands nearly won but mostly lost, and describes the colourful characters and venues that make up the circuit. And I love his mocking of amateurs and their sob stories, before diving into another elaborate telling of the time Lady Luck cheated him of $10,000 on the river card.
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Format: Paperback
This is a book for the player who loves stories of dramatic hands at poker, thrilling victories, unbelievable luck (good aswell as bad), and crushing bad-beats. Holden sublimely recalls his story of a year spent as a poker pro, and is a must-read for every poker fan. You can get away from the plethora of books offering new fang-dangled strategies and theorums, and get indulged in a book that captures a real essence of poker. From his local tuesday night game, to the out-of-his-depth high rollers ables at Vegas, Holden perfectly tells his story on. A fascinating, exciting, and captiviating book. Brilliant.
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Format: Paperback
Synopsis

The story of a year spent by biographer Anthony Holden in the tough world of the professional poker player. He spent days and nights in the poker paradise of Las Vegas, in Malta and Morocco, even shipboard, mingling with the legendary greats, sharpening his game, perfecting his repartee, and learning a great deal about himself in the process. Poker, Holden would insist, is not gambling. Like chess it is a paradigm of life at its most intense, a gladiatorial contest that brings out the best as well as the worst in people. Its heroes, its eccentrics and is comedians stalk the pages of this book, along with all the hair-raising, nail-biting excitement of the games themselves. The book is reissued with a new introduction by the author.

This is a fantastic read and extremely well written book. It makes you actually feel that you are there and shows that life as a Poker pro is not necessarily exciting but you wouldn't swap it for anything in the world.

It's about a journeyman player who decides to give it all up and turn "pro" for a year just to experience the life and see where the journey takes him.

There are lots of anecdotes about well known players (The ones about Amarillo Slim are hilarious), a brutal honesty and an excellent insight into life on the road and the places they go and people they meet. It could almost be a work of fiction.

You do not have to be a Poker fan to enjoy this book as it's not really a book about Poker but a story of a year in the life of someone living the dream.
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Format: Paperback
An English journalist and amateur/social poker player Anthony Holden takes you on a ride through the life of a professional poker player and his attack on the World Series in Vegas. He meets and plays with all the great professionals as he captures the atmosphere of playing on the pro circuit around the world suberbly as if you were there with him.
Don't want to spoil it so just buy it and see for yourself. A book of Royal Flush standard.
A must read by anyone with even a remote interest in poker and/or its chaotic lifestyle.
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