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Best / Worst Craps or Gambling Books
A Roundtable Discussion 

DiceDoctor:
I have to agree that Patrick's books are among the top for me. I especially like his Advanced Craps and his Money Management. I have read every tome written by Scoblete and have to admit it was his books (and Yuri's) that got me going in the game. When I go to the book store now, I can't even buy a book as I have purchased every book written on craps in the last twenty years. Patrick are the best, Scoblete is second. And a guy named Ellison wrote a good one too. Personally, I believe that DiceSetter.com site and the installments by Heavy and Mad Professor are the best source of info ANYWHERE. Come on, Heavy, get that book out...I'll hawk 'em for ya!

Don Guangoche:
Roadrunner, your mentioning of the Do's and Don'ts, reminded me of the Professor's Playbook of Playing4keeps.com. The information contained here works for a nickel bettor, or you high rollers. I especially like the way the pass line strategy kicks-ass on a good shooter and all you have to do is follow his easy to remember bet progression. My bias for the worst? Too many of the carps books pack complicated ways of play, for that "what if", specific conditions. They just don't make sense to me. It took me only a few winning sessions to believe in the Do's and Don'ts. And yes, the don't pass and don't come betting plays are very smart too. A complete package. (self published)

Roadrunner:
Best dice book I have run across is "Dice Doctor" by Sam Grafstein. This book gives very good money management techniques, strategy plays for do's and don't's and has a smattering of stories. I use several techniques he purports in the book for my play.

Worst is something that just came out. "50 Years At The Craps Table"  by Malcolm Jay.  This guys claim to fame is "Bet the pass line and take full odds and if it is really going well make a couple of come bets with full odds".  I thought I saw several inaccurate statements but was positive about only one.  Don't waste the $12 on this one.

Pablo:
I started out with an old one "The Winners Guide to Dice" by John Savage, copyright 1974.  It was a good primer for me back in the late 70's and I am rather attached to it even though it's very basic.

I like both Frank Scoblete and John Patrick but I would have to go with "John Patrick's Craps (So You Wanna Be a Gambler)."  I learned a lot over the years with that one.

The worst is probably "Winning Casino Craps" by Edwin Silberstang.   don't think I marked a page in the book and wondered why I bought it after the fact.

Your site, with all of the articles, playbooks and messages is probably the best information ANYWHERE!  There is a lot to sift through but it is valuable sifting!

Over the years I've found that you have to merge a gambling approach with your own personality and budget.  Some people have patience, some don't, and various approaches need to be tailored to the individual.  what works for you may not work for me.  It doesn't mean I can't learn from you and others, it's just that I have to take all of the information and make it a part of ME.  what you'll find is that a person's greatest strength is also their greatest weakness.

Roadrunner:
Have to agree that for a starting/basic information dice book John Patrick's "John Patrick's Craps (So You Wanna Be a Gambler)"  and "Advanced Craps" has a lot of good info. The Blackjack people don't care much for him because of his casino management involvement.

Billy:
I've got to go with John Patrick's two books. I have learned so much from reading them and reread the advanced book a couple of times a year. After reading Johns books I finally realized how to play the whole game of craps. I haven't read any dice book that tells the story of the whole game like these do. If you want to learn the game these are a must read. I bought Sam Grafstein's book in September and did a quick scan of it before I went to Vegas, but haven't gotten back to it yet. I did like what I read but didn't have time to really get into it.

Pork Chop:
As to the subject of gambling books, I agree with (most) of the earlier posts, with the codicil that while I admire John Patrick for his life long commitment, (let alone his verified success), I do get tired of his constant harping on bank roll management.  A few references would be sufficient, however, it seems to me that all of his books are like a sermon – and to someone who has been married four times, (all in Vegas about every six to seven years!), a sermon doesn’t hit home really well – but the general content of his books is top flight.

I also play a lot of poker, with “Super System” by Doyle Brunson being something that can be read every six months and still learning from it.

Most all of David Sklansky’s books are thought provoking, and, when not in collaboration with Mason Malmuth, not so analytical that you feel that a PHD in mathematics is a prerequisite.

The series by Tom McEvoy and T.J. Cloutier are about the best around for books by players who “have done it, and ARE doing it”.  Just a few thoughts…

Heavy:
Without question - the best book I've ever read on the subject of craps is John Patrick's Advanced Craps book.  Another guy who has a decent book - another Atlantic City player, by the way - is J. Phillip Vogel.  His book is Craps - The Real Deal - and would be a good entry level book.  His views parallel Patrick's, but his writing style is a bit more polished.  On the other hand, for me - part of Patrick's charm is his personality.  

I've enjoyed most of the Scoblete books through the years - some interesting insights there.  However, I think he often "sells out to the other side" with his magazine articles.  

Someone mentioned the Feinberg books.  I agree that they are poorly written.  Still, the content has some value.  

An unfortunate side bar to publishing and the gaming industry - at present there is only one New York publisher that will even take on a gambling book.  Those presses that will handle this type of material are usually "royalty paying" presses - which means you don't get a dime for your book until it (1) earns out - meaning all of the editing, production, printing and distribution costs are recouped - and (2) shows a profit.  At which point you might earn - oh, a buck and a half a copy for a book with a $19.99 retail price.

Some don't even pay that.  They pay the author in "copies" of his own book - which he can then take and sell for $20 a copy - and that's how he gets his money.  That's why you see a lot of gaming authors hawking their books directly through their web-sites rather than through bookstores, etc.  They're trying to get paid.  Last of all come the self-published or vanity books.  This is the one where the author pays for all of the up front costs himself and orders - say - a run of 500 books at a cost of $5.00 each or so.  So he fronts $2500 to get the books printed - and then sells them himself - again, thru web sites, personal appearances, seminars, etc.  A very tough way to go.  

Now, MOST of the gambling books on the market fall into these last two categories.  And since most are written by guys whose strength is something other than English 101 - and they have little or no editorial support - these books generally look unprofessional and amateurish.  

Mad Professor:
Lyle Stuart published a book called "Winning at Casino Gambling". The original by Carol Publishing is out of print, but am I told that his own Barricade Books has re-released a heavily revised version. It chronicles ten winning LV craps/baccarat trips that he made in '79 and '80.

It delves into being "in the zone", as well as adjusting your attitudes after both wins and losses. It had a significant impact on my early gaming activities.

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