Decide to Play Great Poker: A Strategy Guide to No-Limit Texas Hold Em

Decide to Play Great Poker: A Strategy Guide to No-Limit Texas Hold Em

by Annie Duke, John Vorhaus


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Ask the great poker players how they'd play a hand and the answer is always, "It depends." That answer can be infuriating. But guess what? It really does depend. The key to becoming a great poker player is in knowing exactly what it depends on. At last there's a book that gives you that answer.

Poker is a game of so many variables: table position, flop texture, the number of players in a hand, the personalities of your opponents, and so much more. Decide to Play Great Poker teaches you how to identify and analyze those variables, interchange them within basic game-situation templates, and become knowledgeable, comfortable, and confident in any poker situation. Instead of just dictating a bunch of rules that work only some of the time, this book teaches you to become a great poker thinker and strategist, so that you can expertly navigate any poker challenge that you encounter.

Most players think that the goal of poker is to make money. They're wrong! The goal of poker is to make good decisions. Money is simply the way you measure how well you're meeting that objective. So if you're ready to start making world-class decisions at the poker table--and to reap the substantial rewards that those decisions will yield--all you have to do is decide: Decide to Play Great Poker now.

You'll never be vexed by "it depends" again.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781935396321
Publisher: Huntington Press
Publication date: 05/31/2011
Pages: 464
Sales rank: 377,359
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.30(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Annie Duke earned a double major in English and psychology at Columbia University and an MA in Cognitive Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania. She was also a National Science Foundation Fellow from 1988 to 1991.

Since 1994, she has dominated poker, quickly establishing herself as one of the world's best players. In her very first tournament at the World Series of Poker, she placed 13th.

In 2004, she won her first WSOP bracelet (in the $2,000-buy-in Omaha Hi/Lo Split). That same year, she knocked out nine poker legends to win the no-limit Texas hold 'em invitation-only WSOP Tournament of Champions.

In 2010, Annie won the prestigious NBC National Heads-Up Poker Championship, beating 64 of the world's top players on her way to a $500,000 first prize.

Annie parlayed her skills into an industry-leading career that encompasses tournament play, advising gaming companies, authoring instructional books and videos, and as a proponent of players' rights. A longtime industry advocate, Annie has testified in front of the U.S. House of Representatives' Judiciary Committee on online poker legislation and the U.S. House of Representatives' Financial Services Committee; she continues to be a leading voice for online gaming.

Annie has also become a prominent television personality, and is recognized worldwide for her runner-up finish on Donald Trump's "Celebrity Apprentice." Today, she is League Commissioner of Federated Sports + Gaming. She's also an instructor at the World Series of Poker Academy.

John Vorhaus has written more than two million words on poker, including the Killer Poker book series and the poker novel Under the Gun. He has also penned the "sunshine noir" mystery novels The California Roll and The Albuquerque Turkey, as well as dozens of television and film scripts. He travels the world teaching and training writers--26 countries on four continents at last count.

"As a poker player," says John, "I'm a pretty good writer."

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Decide to Play Great Poker: A Strategy Guide to No-Limit Texas Hold Em 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 16 reviews.
wijjam More than 1 year ago
Being a high school math teacher and poker player, I could never understand exactly what everyone was talking about when they talked position. Annie Duke put that into a mathematical situation that I can comprehend. Thank you so much. You've helped me to understand why I always felt uncomfortable after the flop holding middle pairs with one or more people behind me.
gwolski More than 1 year ago
I am the type of person that learns by understanding concepts rather than memorizing facts. I have been playing recreational poker for about 8 years and have read many books by some great players (Harrington, Brunson and Caro to name a few). I am also very good with math so I already understood the math part of the game and the concept of "game theory". This book falls in line with all the theory I already knew, but puts it together in such a way that makes it easier and clearer to use. "Your Primary Goal is to Reduce Uncertainty" This statement alone has helped me in so many ways. Yes, I already knew that one of the reasons we raise is to gain information, but that's only part of it. Annie explains how sometimes calling is just as strong if not stronger than raising and can help you avoid tough decisions--a theme throughout the whole book. If you are new to poker and still trying to memorize hand rankings and what pot odds mean, this book is not for you (at least not yet). Annie spares us a lot of the fundamentals and jumps right into the how and why to apply the knowledge and experience we already have. Although the book is heavily based on math and Annie makes reference to odds, pot odds, reverse implied odds etc., she does not dwell on how we compute this or too much into the pure theory of the game. Rather the book is presented as a practical approach to improving your game play by reducing tough decisions. If you have been playing for a while and understand the basics this book will take you to the next level. A must read for anyone serious about improving their game.
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BQuin More than 1 year ago
Best Poker book I have read.
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david973 More than 1 year ago
The vast majority of poker books on the market are studies in starting hands - what to play when, because of the percentages or the "rules". They may offer a pseudo-creative expansion on this very basic concept, but the truth is the focus is almost always simply on which two cards you should play in a given situation. Finally, Annie Duke has given those of us looking for more insight into *how* to play No Limit Texas Hold-Em as opposed to just *what* to play. _Decide To Play Great Poker_ should be required reading for the "math jock" players out there who forever base their successes on playing the odds and blame their losses on bad beats and outs calculations, as if these number-based factors are the only things that should influence playing a particular hand. Ms. Duke makes it clear that while these *rules* are important in some situations, the *reasons* for playing a particular hand are paramount in EVERY situation you experience at the table. She helps readers understand and internalize the other components in the decisions that we make - like the contents of the flop, your position, the number of other players in the hand and their previous behavior - to help readers go from being poker PLAYERS to poker STRATEGISTS. Players might win some hands, but strategists win the game. _Decide To Play Great Poker_ will help anyone understand that difference and increase their successes at the table.