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87 of 88 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Want to be a Winner? It's the only book you'll need.
BLACKJACK FOR BLOOD was the first book on BJ I ever read, and only because it was personally recommended to me several years ago by a professional player in Las Vegas. In retrospect, it is the only book I'd ever have needed to master the game, and I refer to it often while training, and while planning gaming trips.
While there are other BJ books that are perhaps...
Published on January 21, 2001

versus
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Complicated but powerful system
The system is a good one, but complicated. Way too much so for the average person. If you're a smart cookie, this book is for you with a super-powerful system. If you're a newbie to the game, go with a simpler system like Knock-Out Blackjack or High-Low. These simpler systems are almost as strong in computer simulations, and surpass the complex systems when real-world...
Published on July 6, 1999


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87 of 88 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Want to be a Winner? It's the only book you'll need., January 21, 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Blackjack for Blood: The Card-Counters' Bible, and Complete Winning Guide (Paperback)
BLACKJACK FOR BLOOD was the first book on BJ I ever read, and only because it was personally recommended to me several years ago by a professional player in Las Vegas. In retrospect, it is the only book I'd ever have needed to master the game, and I refer to it often while training, and while planning gaming trips.
While there are other BJ books that are perhaps more comprehensive about the theory and history behind the game (Julian Braun, Edward Thorpe), or more detailed about the actual life one can lead as a card counter in a casino (God, I wish I had had the chance to meet and talk with Kenny Uston before he died!) or even more fun to read (Scoblete's books are great, as well) Carlson's book is as complete as you'll need; comprehensive in its detail of the game, and all the intricacies of playing in a casino from camoflage (critical if you're going to play as a counter) to betting stategies.
When I first started playing, I just used the Basic Strategy section. When I had mastered that, I moved on to learning his Level Two count (and contrary to other reviewers, I found it easy enough to learn and master). As my game improved in actual casino play, I moved on to varying my playing (and betting) strategies based on the count of the cards. As I said, I've referred to the book often.
I now play at casinos many times a year, am almost totally comped on all my trips, and win far more than I lose. I have no desire to play professionally--why bother? But it's a terrific and lucrative hobby. And the writers, players, and counters are right: It's not the money that's the thrill for me...it's knowing you can beat the game.
Like anything else, you get out of this book what you put into it. Learning to count cards is not difficult, but it's a skill that takes work. If you really want to guarantee you'll be a winner in virtually any casino in the world, you want BLACKJACK FOR BLOOD.
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46 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AWESOME! The best BJ book in print. Period., July 28, 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Blackjack for Blood: The Card-Counters' Bible, and Complete Winning Guide (Paperback)
This book has it all. It's mathematically accurate, highly informative, up-to-date, and beautifully written. In addition, Carlson's anecdotes of high-roller life in the casino fast lane make for a really fun, entertaining read. Carlson is both a mathematician and a successful high-stakes Blackjack player, and he presents the concepts behind card counting in an easy-to-understand way that is informative, practical and very entertaining. This book is just chock full of priceless information. It presents the theory of card counting, basic strategy, game selection, camouflage, casino comportment, special "commando" tactics, money management, risk of ruin, etc., etc., as well as Carlson's own Advanced Omega II System, which all the experts agree is the strongest BJ system going. AOII is a level-2 card-counting system that I've found easy to learn and easy to use. And it works! It really gets the money. K-O and Hi-Lo don't come close. This book is da bomb! If you could only have one book on BJ, this should definitely be it. Highly recommended.
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30 of 30 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for all levels of play, June 9, 1999
By A Customer
Blackjack for blood is a great beginner as well as advanced guide to playing blackjack. For the beginner, the description and charts on playing basic strategy are great. For the intermediate player, the book offers a basic hi/lo card counting strategy. And for the advanced player, the book introduces an advanced level two count system that is more accurate to use than the simple hi/lo system. The level two system, however, is slightly more complicated and requires the player to practice longer in order to master. The author also explains all of this in an easy to understand narrated format that makes the book quite enjoyable to read. For advanced players that want to learn the intricacies of the probability theory behind blackjack, I strongly recommend reading "Professional Blackjack" by Stanford Wong. I definitely give this book 2 Thumbs UP! Maybe the only blackjack book you'll need to succeed!
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good Book - but very complicated counting system, July 25, 2004
This review is from: Blackjack for Blood: The Card-Counters' Bible, and Complete Winning Guide (Paperback)
"BlackJack for Blood" can benefit any player of 21, from new people looking for the basic rules of when to stand/hit/double, to the more ambitious card counter who wants a system that can basically guarantee success at the table.

The unnamed author mixes rules with amusing, relevant anecdotes and actually creates an interesting read. He gives information that will help counters avoid detection and also deals out less-than noble (but not exactly illegal) tricks a player can use to take a few extra chips from those evil casinos.

The meat of the book, however, is a card counting system that takes some serious brain power and practice to master. I always found math to be boring and simplistic in school and received nearly perfect scores on the math sections of scholastic standardized tests. But the card counting system covered in this book may be a little above my mental capacity. It is only for people with Mensa-level processors.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Complicated but powerful system, July 6, 1999
By A Customer
The system is a good one, but complicated. Way too much so for the average person. If you're a smart cookie, this book is for you with a super-powerful system. If you're a newbie to the game, go with a simpler system like Knock-Out Blackjack or High-Low. These simpler systems are almost as strong in computer simulations, and surpass the complex systems when real-world conditions are factored in.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome -- best blackjack book in print!, April 30, 2005
By 
This review is from: Blackjack for Blood: The Card-Counters' Bible, and Complete Winning Guide (Paperback)
Blackjack For Blood is the best book on blackjack I have ever read -- and I have read just about all of them. According to all the experts, Carlson's Advanced Omega II System (included in the book) is much stronger than Hi-Lo or K-O, and I have found it surprisingly easy to master. It definitely gets the money; that's for sure. I also like the author's writing style. He explains things very well, and he intersperses the hardcore stuff with entertaining stories about his high-rolling experiences in various casinos around the world. All in all, a terrific book on how to beat casino blackjack. I highly recommend it.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great book... but..., July 21, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Blackjack for Blood: The Card-Counters' Bible, and Complete Winning Guide (Paperback)
Blackjack for Blood is a great book that introduces you to a powerful card counting system as well as "basic strategy". My only complaint is the way the graphs and charts are organized leave little to be appreciated. Put aside that and the book is wonderful. But let me let YOU in on a little secret. You're hearing this from a Las Vegas local. The game of Blackjack is NOT the game it used to be and is not the game depicted in this book or any books written around this timeframe. Around mid to late 2000 things in the casinos have changed. The idea was to keep out card counters and weaken good basic strategy players. The result however is a game that will leave anyone angry and wishing they never approached the table in the first place. The game might as well not be called Blackjack anymore. I've read a lot of books on Blackjack and am quite good at card counting so let me tell you why you should virtually never hit a Blackjack table.

This book and many others assume you'll be playing in ideal conditions. Preferably a single deck or six deck game (you gotta be real good and have a lot of money before you hit a six deck). You need blackjack to pay at least 3 to 2. Also, you would wan't the dealer to stand on soft 17. Under these conditions you've got a lot of money ahead of you. But these rules are a thing of the past! Let me tell you first that if you want to card count Blackjack in Reno, DON'T. They reshuffle their decks, pay only 6 to 5 (sometimes even money), and they hit their soft 17s. Go to downtown Las Vegas and you're facing similar conditions. There's little deck penetration (bad for counters), you can only double down on 10s and 11s, their blackjacks usually only pay even money, and of course they hit their soft 17s. You're looking at virtually the same conditions on the strip but they have six to eight decks! Drastically decreasing the efficiency of basic strategy. On top of that they wan't you to drop even more money at most tables. Under ideal conditions, the knowledgable Blackjack player (no card counting) loses about $2.50 per hour. This makes for at least a pretty fun game. The new rules which favor the house dramatically cause a player to lose $14 dollars an hour. Let me tell you, if you're looking for a fun time at these tables JUST WALK AWAY. They're designed to take your money over time NOT GIVE YOU MONEY. These new rules also make card counting virtually not worth it. You're better off getting another job or selling drugs on Fremont street (don't do that).

My last and final advice is this. If you want to win money on Blackjack in today's world you must> memorize basic strategy, go to a freshly shuffled SINGLE deck table, put a good sum of money down on the table and just go all in, then pray you beat the dealer. If you lose, don't play anymore Blackjack. If you win, don't play anymore Blackjack! Oh and if you find a table where Blackjacks pay 3 to 2 and are single or double deck LET ME KNOW WHERE YOU FOUND IT.
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AWESOME!! The best BJ book in print. Period., June 17, 1999
By A Customer
This book has it all. It's mathematically accurate, highly informative, up-to-date, and beautifully written. In addition, Carlson's anecdotes of high-roller life in the casino fast lane make for a really fun, entertaining read. Carlson is both a mathematician and a successful high-stakes Blackjack player, and he presents the concepts behind card counting in an easy-to-understand way that is accurate, informative, and practical. This book is just chock full of priceless information. It presents the theory of card counting, basic strategy, game selection, camouflage, casino comportment, special "commando" tactics, money management, risk of ruin, etc., etc., as well as Carlson's own Advanced Omega II System, which all the experts agree is the strongest BJ system going. AOII is a level-2 card-counting system that I've found easy to learn and easy to use. And it works! It really gets the money. K-O and Hi-Lo don't come close. This book is the bomb! If you could only have one book on BJ, this should definitely be it. Highly recommended.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding BJ book for amateur or pro, July 15, 1999
By A Customer
I've read and studied just about every good Blackjack book published in the last 15 years, from Wong's Professional Blackjack to Vancura and Fuch's K-O Blackjack to Schlesinger's Blackjack Attack: Playing the Pros' Way, and believe me none of these books come close to the level of Carlson's Blackjack For Blood. It really is a BJ masterpiece. Definitely, a must have for serious players.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book - but one of many an aspiring counter should read, June 4, 2008
This review is from: Blackjack for Blood: The Card-Counters' Bible, and Complete Winning Guide (Paperback)
This book gives an excellent overview of the game of blackjack and an explanation of how to use a powerful counting system, including many index numbers. I've used this system for single-deck games for several years and, for someone who truly knows what they're doing (if you are at all uncertain as to whether or not you fit into this category, you are not in it) this book is literally worth its weight in gold. Make that platinum.

Several of the reviews posted here may lead a person to believe that card counting is easy money. I would caution anyone that it is not as simple as reading a book on a flight to Vegas. Blackjack just doesn't work that way. There is a lot more to consistently beating the game than reading one book, or even ten books. Counting is the easy part, getting away with it in casinos over the long term is a whole different ball game.
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Blackjack for Blood: The Card-Counters' Bible, and Complete Winning Guide
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