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52 Ways to Cheat at Poker: How to Spot Them, Foil Them, and Defend Yourself Against Them Paperback – March 25, 2008


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52 Ways to Cheat at Poker: How to Spot Them, Foil Them, and Defend Yourself Against Them + Dirty Poker
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Plume (March 25, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0452289114
  • ISBN-13: 978-0452289116
  • Product Dimensions: 0.4 x 4.9 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,083,919 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

“Often entertaining...and rarely dull—this little book could actually change your life.”
—Kostya Kennedy, Sports Illustrated

“This book has class, depth and covers a mountain of territory....For the price and the depth of material offered, this could be one of the best books of the century on the subject.”
—Howard Schwartz, Gamblers Book Shop

“Provides unique insight into the art of the cheat. In a game where the accumulation of knowledge is paramount, it doesn’t make sense to miss out on this one.”
—Chuck Blount, syndicated poker columnist

“Kronzek’s delightful compendium is a fun and witty guide to the nefarious methods card thieves use to, as they put it, “get the money” – your money. He helps arm you with the knowledge you’ll need to protect yourself and he presents it with all the verve and snap of a crisply dealt card.”
—Karl Johnson, author of The Magician and the Cardsharp

“A remarkably fresh turn on a very old subject.... Without doubt, the first book I would buy a friend who asks, ‘I’m in a weekly poker game. Do you think anyone would try to cheat me?’”
—Jamy Ian Swiss, Genii Magazine

“The book is a pleasure to read and study.”
—Martin Gardner, MUM --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Allan Kronzek is a magician, writer, and educator. He is the author of the New York Times bestseller The Sorcerer’s Companion: A Guide to the Magical World of Harry Potter (Broadway Books, cowritten with his daughter Elizabeth), and the acclaimed A Book of Magic for Young Magicians – The Secrets of Alkazar. He performs and lectures on the history of conjuring at schools, colleges, libraries and museums. He was a student of the crooked gambling expert Frank Garcia.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Dave Schwartz VINE VOICE on August 2, 2008
Format: Paperback
Allan Kronzek tackles cheating in poker as a magician and treats the subject with a conjurer's dispassion. This is a relief; if there's one thing we don't need, it's another self-congratulatory, non-falsifiable "insider's" story of how to cheat people. Instead, we get a quick but surprisingly serious volume that manages to feed the reader some history amid the tricks.

The title isn't an attempt at misdirection: after a brief introduction, Kronzek runs through 52 short chapters, each detailing one or more methods of cheating. Generally, Kronzek explains the technique involved, offers notes on historical uses, and closes by telling the reader how he can protect himself. Miscellanea scatter throughout the text, such as reproductions of cheating house catalogs and excerpts from landmark books, enliven the story.

52 Ways is written to be accessible to a novice who doesn't know a shiner from a holdout. But even veteran card mechanics could probably learn a thing or two from this book. Whatever your level of experience, reading 52 Ways will at least help you appreciate the ways that you can be cheated.

That's the rub: Kronzek is honest enough to admit that no anti-cheating tactic is absolutely guaranteed. The final proof is in the pudding: if you find yourself losing one suspicious pot too many, you should suspect malfeasance.

If nothing else, incorporating some of Kronzek's anti-cheating suggestions into your "friendly" home game will, at the very least, raise the bar for cheaters and help to keep honest players honest. You'll also gain a deeper appreciation for the ingenuity with which cheaters have approached poker.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on May 6, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book as a joke. I was going to give it to a friend and tell him "this was his best chance to become a winner.....ha ha."

Well, there was a local player caught cheating using techniques similar to those included in this book. He took $$$thousands. Not so funny. This book demonstrates the importance of relatively simple techniques (such as using cut cards, plastic cards, always cutting, etc.).

Parts of the book are really dated and are used more for their historical value (and humor). But most of this book is a "must read" for anyone running a home game.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By James Swain on September 17, 2008
Format: Paperback
This is one of the best books written on poker cheating, and should be in the hands of everyone who plays for money -- from friendly Friday night games, to people who play in card rooms, to tournament pros. The author has done his homework, and gives the reader a superb education in the varied ways that hustlers and cheaters rob you of your money. Do yourself a favor and buy this book. Then read it. You will not be disappointed.
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