|The Eudaemonic Pie
by Thomas A Bass
What this team set out to do was only
possible to get away with during a very narrow window in history. Sharp
analytical and electronic skills at the dawn of the microelectronic age made it
possible, and at a time when casinos weren't paying much attention to the
threat posed by this emerging technology.
Bass has done a great job of
telling the story of how a couple of physics postgraduate students and their
friends develop tiny computers controlled by toe switches enable them to
achieve an edge over the casino at roulette.
"The Eudaemonic Pie"
literally changed history, in more ways than one. First: in 1985, the Nevada
Legislature was reviewing the bill that would become N.R.S. 465.075 (a bill
considerately provided to the legistature by the casinos themselves). The law
was meant to outlaw "Devices," and the bill actually specified "card games."
When the information published in "The Eudaemonic Pie" came to light, someone
had the forethought to change the law so it applied to games other than those
in which cards were involved.
The strength of this book is weighted
heavily toward the "story" side of the spectrum, and not toward the "telling."
There are definitely stylistic weaknesses, but it could be argued that in this
case, the story itself is so strong that style might have gotten in the way of
It reads with the gravity of good fiction, but is all the
more satisfying for being true. - Editor.
Paperback - 300
pages (Reprint 7th Feb 2017)
by Pat Silver-Lasky
Think politicians and bankers have just been
revealed as fraudsters. Think again! Ponzi schemes, bank schemes that didn't
exist, fraud, deception, tricksters and fakers all here in this well researched
Scams Schemes Scumbags is a book that uncovers stories about
shysters, schemers, grifters, scam artists, hoaxers, fraudsters, rogues, and
criminal operators from the past and from the present and present each person
they write about in a brief story that stands on its own.
It is both
entertaining and intelligent and most importantly there is a wide selections of
talents on show here and stories from both sides of the pond so that North
American, British and European readers will all find something that they have
heard of, as well as plenty of others they haven't. From John Zachary DeLorean
(wonderful cars) to Victor Lustig (the man who sold the Eiffel Tower for scrap)
to PT Barnum (believe-it-or-not freaks), they are all here.
This is one
of those books that you can browse through and pick chapters at random at the
same time gaining knowledge of how to avoid being taken by such hucksters and
laughing all the way. Even those who have been victims of people and companies
like these or burned in investment frauds etc will find a laugh on every page.
The cartoons also help keep the information light.
A definite must-read
for the gambling crowd and a great little stocking filler for those people who
really have everything else - they won't have this -
Paperback -262 pages (September 2, 2012)
Smart Money: How the World's Best Sports Bettors Beat the Bookies Out of
by Michael Konik
This fascinating inside look at the gambling biz reveals so much
information that you would swear the author was breaking some sort of
Omerta-like code of silence. The author conceals the identities of the
principal players behind fake names, but his fictionalized stand-ins are so
compelling (especially the Brain Trust chieftain, Rick "Big Daddy" Matthews)
that the book feels like a mixture of true-life expose and high-stakes
A definite must-read for the gambling crowd. -
Hardcover -384 pages (14 Nov 2006)
World's Greatest Gambling Scams
by Richard Marcus
"The World's Greatest Gambling Scams" details the
best scams ever pulled off in the adrenaline-fuelled gambling world. They range
from those relying on basic sleight-of-hand manoeuvres to those that utilise
gadgets based on the very latest high-tech wizardry. Scams examined include:
the famous Ritz Roulette Scam that used mini-computers and cell phones to
determine on what number the roulette ball would drop; big-action baccarat
games in which the dealers merely pretended to shuffle the cards; a dye
solution for marking casino cards that can only be seen with special contact
lenses and disappears without trace an hour after its application; and, a tiny
weightless receiver embedded into a roulette ball and controlled by a radio
transmitter hidden in a pack of Marlboro cigarettes.
As well as
describing the scams from their inception to implementation, Marcus introduces
us to the vastly diverse characters who carried them out and analyses what made
them tick. This is a well written book. albeit with typos and not a lot spent
on proofing. The stories flow really well and its well worth a read. -
Paperback -360 pages (1 April 2007)
|Wheel of Fortune
by Archie Morrison and Joe Pieri
Many talented Scots found an exit route from
the slums of Glasgow through football, boxing or show business. Archie Morrison
discovered another way-through his skills as a croupier.
the Stakis casinos in Scotland, he was soon headhunted for the Nassau Grand in
the Bahamas, and was eventually lured to the gambling mecca of Las Vegas. Here,
in Caesar's Palace and the Sands, he dealt the cards, rolled the dice and spun
the wheel for Dean Martin, Frank Sinatra and Lee Marvin, and struck up
friendships with legendary professional gamblers like Amarillo Slim and Fast
Fortune also provides a unique insider's account on the
tricks of the croupier's trade, stories of some of the most outlandish gambling
scams ever attempted, and potted biographies of notorious players from the past
such as Nick 'the Greek' Dandalos, Sheriff Bat Masterson and 'Calamity' Jane
Paperback -160 pages (May 2004)
£8.99 no USA
by Ben Mezrich
From the author of the bestseller Bringing Down the House, another
extraordinary real-life thriller, a true story of money, risk and life lived
close to the edge, set in the Wild East of 1990s Japan. Ugly Americans tells
Malcolm's story, and that of others like him, in a cross between Mezrich's own
best-selling Bringing Down the House and Michael Lewis' Liar's Poker.
John Malcolm is barely 30, a high school football hero and Princeton graduate,
he controls a hedge fund worth USD50m. He made his millions back in the early
'90's, a time when dozens of elite young American graduates made their fortunes
in hedge funds in the Far East, beating the Japanese at their own game, riding
the crashing waves of the Asian markets and winning. Failure meant not only
bankruptcy and disgrace a la Nick Leeson, but potentially even death - at the
hands of the Japanese Yakuza.
Paperback - 352 pages (July 7, 2005)
UK Amazon £6.39 U$11.16 from Amazon USA
by John Pearson
For over thirty years, John Pearson has provided us with literary
exposures of some of the most enigmatic people and underground organisations of
our modern world. The Gamblers follows the fortunes of five men at the centre
of the ultra-fashionable Clermont Set: the Clermont Club's eccentric founder
John Asplnall; Dominic Elwes, who was to betray the Set's code of silence; the
socialite owner of Annabel's, Mark Birley; the womanising, multi millionaire
James Goldsmith; and the infamous Lord 'Lucky' Lucan.
At the heart of
the Set lay a belief that risk-takers are the people who make civilisation
tick. Cruel, heartless and snobbish, they gambled with their fortunes and kept
a stiff upper lip when they lost. This and a loyalty to each other that
transcended everything else enabled them to rise above crises such as the long
affair between Birley's wife and James Goldsmith, and the facial mutilation of
the Birley's son by one of Aspinall's tigers. Pearson revels in the charisma,
charm and wit of these dastardly but debonair millionaires, and reveals how
their code led to one of the great unsolved mysteries of the twentieth century.
Hardcover - 240 pages (July
UK Amazon £12.59
Down : Reflections on Gambling and Loss
by Frederick Barthelme,
This slim book by
the Barthelme Brothers, recounting their descent into gambling hell, is both
elegantly written and horrifying. After all, the Barthelmes are college
professors and literary stars, and if their lives could veer out of control so
suddenly and so badly, then so could yours and mine. The brothers end up
throwing away all their money, including a $300,000 inheritance, at a riverboat
casino during the year or so after their parents' deaths. Then -- as if the
story couldn't get any more gruesome -- they are indicted on charges of
cheating the casino!
Paperback - 208 pages Reprint (21 May, 2001)
expected price £8.03 Buy
This Book [U$10.40 Amazon.com]