When it comes to gambling, we would typically associate casino related activities with travelling, socialising and having a thrilling time. Indeed, we would be less likely to connect this popular activity with traditional forms of entertainment such as books and literature.
However, in modern society casinos are used for a variety of different purposes including movies and books. As casino games have become so popular in recent years, it is worth exploring the various books that are out there with casino themes and how they integrate this theme into the storyline.
Comped by Bill Kearney
Firstly, among the many astounding gambling books on the market ‘Comped’ is a casino themed novel which chronicles how life was in Atlantic City in the 1980s. It is an interesting read as it was a time where only traditional land-based casinos existed in a period which preceded the creation and boom of online casinos.
It exposes the underbelly of Atlantic City with an inner glimpse into the world of celebrities through the eyes of a high roller and the glitzy world he lives in. However, it is worth remembering that gambling enthusiasts do not have to relegate themselves to literature to experience the world of casinos.
With technology advancing at an alarming rate, they can now enjoy themselves by venturing online and choosing an online casino to play their favourite casino games without even having to visit a traditional brick and mortar casino. Not only is this convenient and provides them with ease of access, but it is a great way to join in on the fun with others as reading is normally a solo activity.
Molly’s Game by Molly Bloom
Furthermore, avid readers will want to pick up a copy of ‘Molly’s Game’ which derives from a true story of a 26-year-old woman from Colorado. Praised for its authenticity and transparency, the mémoire tells us a story about the high-stakes poker player who organized some of the world’s largest no-limit underground poker tournaments on the east and west coasts.
As we know, many celebrities like to enjoy themselves by participating in gambling activities and this novel gives us an insight into the private games that were held for those in the inner Hollywood circles. This novel is perfect for poker fans as the protagonist transmits her knowledge about the highly popular game revealing everything from how to call someone’s bluff to developing your skills at a professional level.
In addition, for fans of the popular film Casino Royale it is worth reading the series which started off this globally renowned film franchise. Penned by Ian Fleming in 1953, its the first-ever novel written about the suave secret agent, 007 and the story revolves around the game of Texas Hold’em in Montenegro. Although it deviates from the gambling theme at times, readers will fail to set the novel down as it is face paced and thrilling.
The Gambler by Fyodor Dostoevsky
The great thing about the casino novel genre is that you can find a book for every type of casino game. The Gambler by Fyodor Dostoevsky provides a great means of entertainment for any gambling fan in between playing casino games. It follows Alexei Ivanovich and his fixation on the game of roulette. With a sub plot that integrates themes of romance, this read is truly gripping and also touches on issues of money and status.
One of a Kind: The rise and fall of Stuey by Nolan Dalla and Peter Alson
For anyone who has an inclination towards success stories, ‘One of a Kind: The Rise and Fall of Stuey’ written by Nolan Dalla is worth the hype. It is an autobiography that follows the World’s Greatest Poker Player, Stuey Ungar, who has been the champion of the Poker World Series three times. Although it touches on tragic themes, it chronicles his rise to success as he became a sensation overnight when he started playing underground card-table games.
The writing style is incredibly personal as it was developed from hundreds of hours of recordings that the author carried out of Stuey. This novel also leaves anyone who reads it with the feeling that they can accomplish anything they set their mind too. It also teaches us some valuable lessons about cherishing your wins and not squandering them.
In conclusion, as casinos are becoming more common there are now plenty of books that feature themes focusing on them. Although we have come a long way in terms of shifting online, it is still important to take time to read and seek out classic forms of entertainment. As people are fascinated with the world of gambling, reading about it is a great way of developing your vocabulary whilst learning about the industry that is taking over the world. From ‘Comped’ and ‘Molly’s Game’ to ‘Casino Royale’ and ‘The Gambler’ there should be more novels which integrate casino themes in the future to satisfy both readers and gambling fans.