Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: Gambling 102: The Best Strategies for All Casino Games
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on August 25, 2005
First a disclaimer: I work for the Wizard and I edited this book for him. That said, one reason I work for him in the first place is because I respect that he knows what he's talking about. He's the worldwide authority on gambling math, and his website WizardOfOdds.com is the definitive resource on proper gambling strategy.

Gambling 102 assumes the reader already knows how to play the games, which is why it's not called Gambling 101. In Gambling 102 the Wizard shares his strategies for a whole host of casino games, as well as for NFL sports betting, where some of the most interesting content is. There's also some info on slot machines you haven't read anywhere else, as well as rankings for hands in Texas Holdem poker.

Perhaps the best thing about this book is that it's written by an expert. There are so many gambling books out there written by hacks who are just guessing. Not this one, this is the real deal.
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on November 13, 2005
This book simply cuts to the chase with pertinent information on the various games of chance offered at the casinos. Yes, games of chance, that is what casino gambling is, and Shackleford points it out brilliantly. When my nieces and nephews turn 21, this book will be mandatory reading prior to their ever entering a casino! This book is also helpful for the advanced gambler. The insights and various charts aid to confirm/assist one in their playing the games of chance!
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on December 26, 2007
Most of the gambling books out there try to sell you on the idea of "beating the house," "making money at the casino," or tell you "You can beat the odds."

This books doesn't do any of that (thank goodness!). In fact, this book doesn't even tell you how to play any of the games. It assumes you already know the basics, but want to take a deeper look at how the different games operates (hence the "Gambling 102" title).

Michael "The Wizard of Odds" Shackleford's "Gambling 102" dives right in with top-notch, in-depth mathematical analysis of each of the most popular table games played in casino. You get the straight facts on how much you can expect to loose (or win) when playing the different games, and making different bets. By taking a statistical look at all the various games and different bets in each game, Gambling 102 provides a wealth of figures that show exactly how big the "house edge" is. For instance, did you know the best bet in the casino is the "Odds" bet on the craps table? The worst bet is on the Big 6 money wheel.

Each game is has it own chapter and is broken do into individual bets. The blackjack section also includes a chart that tells you when to hit, stand, split and double down; so you will always make the best choice when at the table. Tips like these will help maximize your money while at the casino.

I enjoyed reading about the "house edge" on my favorite casino games, and will definitely adjust how I play the next time I go to a casino.
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on October 14, 2014
The best way to bet for every casino game in the world. This book has information on the edge the casino has for each game. Just knowing the edge is an advantage for you because you can avoid the crummy bets and put your concentration on the better opportunities.
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on May 17, 2013
I've been a longtime follower of WizardofOdds.com. For the five dollar Kindle price, this book is worth it. It gives information on a wide host of games without embellishing, as many gambling writers have a penchant to do so in their works. Quite simply, the odds of the game are likely against the player. The longer you play, the more likely those odds are going to catch up with you. This book helps to remind the reader they should playing most of these games to have fun, not to win money over the long haul.
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on April 4, 2010
So many people go into the casino unarmed with the ammunition to be successful. The casinos are big and beautiful because they make money - the games are always in favor of the house. However by playing correctly and having a little "luck", one can have a night of entertainment AND come out ahead in the short term.

This book will give the math behind the games. Don't worry, it is not like reading a dull mathematics text - the games are presented to those who know something about the game but wish to see the best way to win (ie optimum strategy). Charts and tables do provide quick information and the games are explained in detail. This book will answer your questions on many of the games you will see at the casinos.

The author of this book is also known as the Wizard of Odds, having a website with more information about gaming than anyone can imagine. Here is the only flaw I have with the book - the games appear to be more in favor of the house than they really are. Most everyone thinks the house edge is what the casinos are mathematically expected to win on a given hand. In many games, this is the true house advantage. However the Wizard speaks about another measure on his website, namely the element of risk. This value is based on the total amount played on any given hand as opposed to the original bet, thus it is a better indicator of how he game actually plays out. The book does not mention this value, only stating the house edge.

Now to the punch line. My wife and I very much enjoy playing at the casinos. We are not "gamblers" - we just enjoy the entertainment value of gaming. My wife plays slots and, as I hope EVERYONE is aware, slots are the money maker of a casino. Play them for entertainment value ONLY, don't expect to walk away a winner on a regular basis. I play many of the table games described in the book. Being very good with numbers and generally luckier than most, I have been able to cover my wife's playing expenses (and then some) for the past 4 years. THAT is saying something!

If you really want to understand the games played at the casino, then this book will be of great value. I bought one for my brother-in-law (as well as one for me). Read over it and it may save you a 100 times (or more?) the cost of the book.
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on December 31, 2013
Mr. Shackelford is one of the most respected gambling authorities in the country

His knowledge of each game is capsulized for the reader in this information filled book.

Do not step into a casino without reading this.
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on October 7, 2013
Michael Shackleford has spent more than a decade writing and disseminating mathematical information on gambling odds and strategies. He is the bright light shining into dim corners of hazy casino games to bring common sense, proven and tested numbers to the table. If you want to gamble based on the best player bets, lowest house edge, and good player strategies for all well-known casino games, this book is yours for the price of one low ante. I'm happy to have it in my library and refer to it often. I have changed my preferred games based on his recommendations and used his strategy charts, and am seeing a corresponding increase in my returns during play. Play smart with this book, and have fun!
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on June 25, 2012
As the author of Not Just Another Slot Machine Strategy System: How to Win at Slot Machinesand other gambling books, I can assure you that Mike provides quality information. He doesn't glamorize or overstate your chances for success, he simply states the facts and let's you decide for yourself. All of his information is mathematically sound. Always enjoy his work.
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on July 24, 2015
Gives a clear overview and basic strategies of a wide variety of games, but the depth is not that great. I think I was expecting more like a 'Gambling 201' level treatise. Still, Mr. Shackleford has been very generous with his time and knowledge on internet forums and deserves support via book purchases.
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