Each year, Steve Bourie, in collaboration with others, puts out his American Casino Guide. The book is an amalgamation of most of the information one would want or need before setting foot in any casino in the United States. The book generally achieves its goals and manages to present its information economically and in an entertaining manner.
Bourie’s collaborators, which include Anthony Curtis of Las Vegas Advisor fame, Stanford Wong of Current Blackjack News fame, Max Rubin, author of Comp City, and many more. Collaborators like this lend the book instant credibility, and it is warranted. The information presented in this book is trustworthy, which is no small qualification.
The book starts with some advice on how to get around in a casino. There are mini-essays on using casino coupons to one’s advantage, what bets are good ones and what bets aren’t, how to get “comped”, and how to take advantage of slot clubs. The authors use real examples liberally, which give an honest portrayal of what the casino patron should expect.
The next several essays on are various casino games. You learn how to look for good slot machines, how to play video poker, blackjack, roulette, and craps. The book is honest about this; unless one is very skilled (at video poker or blackjack) or very lucky, the authors tell the readers that they can’t expect to win money, but they do tell one how to get the most enjoyment for one’s money by avoiding the worst bets. The descriptions of how to play these games are as accurate as in any book. We then have several very amusing descriptions of how various casinos have erred in the past by not calculating the odds at their games correctly, or giving away too much …