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The Pro Poker Playbook
John Vorhaus
Publisher: Poker Plus Publications (1995)
Pages: 173
ISBN: 1-884466-12-5
Reviewed: 8/97

I didn't have any rational basis for this, but I sort of expected John Vorhaus's book to be more along the lines of a long list of plays you can make in poker. The book is actually a wide-ranging collection of essays on poker that might strike you as anything from profound insights to vague ramblings. I lean towards vague ramblings - Vorhaus does have his own style, but I really didn't get much from the book beyond that. Someone new to poker might get more value from the book in helping develop an appropriate poker mentality.

I don't agree with everything Vorhaus says, but it's probably a good starting point. A couple of odd ideas made me wonder just how well Vorhaus knows his subject. He suggests that nut flush draws in omaha will come in at "roughly forty percent," and that if you have a large enough bankroll, you can trivially break even at omaha8 by seeing every flop (I'm no omaha8 player, but if this were true, 90% of the omaha players I've seen would be even).

The final section of the book contains a series of short short stories, set in a fictional Vegas-like town. They're not liable to show up in literary journals any time soon, and they didn't strike me as especially interesting, but if you read fiction solely for its poker content, you might enjoy them.

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