Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: How the Experts Win at Bridge
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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars23
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on January 3, 2000
This book has helped my overall game more than any other bridge book. I particularly benefitted from the concepts of "getting your bid in early" and the "5 lines of defense." The methodology suggested by the authors for when to play safe and when to take risk for the overtrick in match point play was also of major benefit.
I have purchased copies for 2 of my partners so my master point total can increase that much faster. I would recommend the book for any serious player, whether his/her game is match points, team, or rubber bridge.
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on December 24, 1999
It is direct & to the point with plenty of review questions. More suited to the intermediate bridge player, and too much for the novice, I think. as with most interesting books it is hard to put down, but you must limit your single reading time to limit the amount of info you can retain. I like the book, and have played bridge for several years, and am a director, and teacher.
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on April 10, 2007
This is a great intermediate level book for people wanting to take their game to the next level. It has a great study guide at the back that should really help you as well. Like all good bridge books this one focuses on the logic behind the decisions. It shows you how experts think about the game and how to recognize and make strategic decisions.

My one gripe is that the bibliography on bidding is a bit sparse. It includes some very simple books and some very advanced ones, but doesn't have anything to help you make the transition. Here are my suggestions for taking your bidding to the next level:

Most tournament players in the US use a system called Two-over-one. Hall lists the "bible" on the method in his bibliography, but doesn't list any of the books designed to help you learn and use it. I suggest:

Bridge: 25 Steps to learning 2/1

Workbook on the Two Over One System

The first book will walk you through learning the system and the Lawrence book will help you and your partner use the system effectively. It may be useful to get a book on tournament conventions while reading these books (Root & Pavlicek have one and Segram & Smith have a 2 volume set; both are useful; the R&P tend to have more thorough explanations, but S&S is more complete.)

The other problem with the Hall biblography is that while 2/1 is popular among US tournament players, it generally isn't used by the top-tier players. Honestly, the Precision system used by those experts is much easier to use than 2/1, it's just not popular here in the US for some reason. I suggest that you learn it if you are a serious tournament player with a regular partner; it is much better than 2/1 and takes less time to master. Books to help:

Natural precision: Effective, aggressive, but natural precision bidding,Precision in the 90s,Precision Today: Your Guide To Learning The System -- Or Fine-Tuning Your Precision Partnership. The Brown book is short and sweet and could be used by any partnership that knows the basics of bridge. The Rigal book is a bit more advanced, but it has better coverage of the system. Precision Today is targeted at near-experts, but the first several chapters mirror the Rigal book (the latter chapters do as well, but you should stay away from the "advanced" section of the Rigal book until you are a much better player.)
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on January 3, 2000
This book has helped my overall game more than any other bridge book. I particularly benefitted from the concepts of "getting your bid in early" and the "5 lines of defense." The methodology suggested by the authors for when to play safe and when to take risk for the overtrick in match point play was also of major benefit.
I have purchased copies for 2 of my partners so my master point total can increase that much faster. I would recommend the book for any serious player, whether his/her game is match points, team, or rubber bridge.
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on July 13, 2013
I was surprised by how much I learned from this book. I'm an intermediate/advancing player and this book is pitch-perfect.

The writing is terse but informative. It's almost as if the authors took their PowerPoint slides and made them into a book. I don't mind less fluff, so it's okay.

The quizzes at the end of the chapters are what make this book so good. I would *think* something was obvious, but then I would be faced with a hand in the quiz, not quite know what to do and realize that I haven't been applying the "obvious" advice at the table either.

Expert players will probably find the advice simplistic while beginning players won't get the context. I highly recommend this book for players who consistently win limited games, but barely scratch in open games. It will up your game.
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on March 15, 2006
This book outlines all the strategies required to succeed in tournament bridge play. The book focuses primarily on matchpoint events, but has an excellent chapter on team play. Each chapter includes a nice set of exercises that test the reader's understanding of the material presented.

One minor weakness is that the book describes the "5 Lines of Defense" (active, passive, forcing, defensive trump tricks, and cutting down ruffs), but overlooks a sixth strategy - killing the dummy (for an example of this type of play, see the Merrimac Coup).

All in all, I'm glad I bought this book, and I figure I have won a lot more bridge events because of it!
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on July 10, 2006
Its a good overview for Intermedaite level players that are somewhat isolated and haven't heard about Bridge innovations of the last 20-30 years.

Not a bad book. But if you are familiar with modern bridge, and have read other books, there will not be much new here.

All in all its OK, its not a great book by any means.

5 Stars? I'm curious what those reviewers would conside a 3 star book.
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on December 25, 2006
The book covers a variety of topics, and discusses changes to the game over the last 25 years (as of the publication date).

Its not going to teach you all that much. Instead it will make you aware of things you may not have known about, and you will then need to get some books to adress those subjects.

Its good, but not great. No way is it a 5 star book.
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on August 7, 2011
I've just started reading the book and find it an easy read with good examples. However, it does not have an Index. Rediculous! Why wouldn't you include an index in a book that you'd expect bridge players to return to as a reference? I haven't read past the 2nd chapter but feel that based on the fact that there's no Index the book only rates 3 stars.
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on August 29, 2014
For the most part, simple to understand and most importantly stresses the difference in bidding and play between Match Points and International Match Points.
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