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Ace on the River: An Advanced Poker Guide
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Ace on the River: An Advanced Poker Guide

3.57  ·  Rating details ·  724 ratings  ·  32 reviews
Designed to help those interested in increasing their understanding of the game, this poker book is suitable for those new to the game or winning professionals. Focusing on a variety of subjects, such as the psychology of poker, money management, family issues, and sex, it gives the reader a chance to look beyond the cards to see the poker world.
Paperback, 316 pages
Published July 1st 2005 by Last Knight Publishing Company (first published June 30th 2005)
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Average rating 3.57  · 
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Cody Steele
Mar 18, 2018 rated it it was ok
Don't come here if you're looking to improve your poker game. This book is more of a look into the lifestyle that involves poker and gambling as a profession. As you'd imagine, this consists of many highs and lows and some in-betweens.

If you're looking for this type of content, you'd be better served listening to a podcast or watching YouTube videos as that type of media is more entertaining than a book, in my opinion. For that reason, I consider this book to be all but obsolete.

Gotta toss it
Jeff Wong
Oct 01, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was a fun book to read -- not entirely what I expected when I first picked it up. There is a lot of philosophy, a bit of economics, some hard realism, and some good old story-telling as it relates to the professional poker scene and those to take part in it. I especially like the "puzzles" at the end where he analyzes actual poker hands that he played and allows the reader to try to assess what to do and why. When he provides the "answers", they often illustrate errors that he believes he ...more
Jan 01, 2020 rated it did not like it
Shelves: abandoned
Nothing to offer. I wanted to finish it, just to finish it, but I couldn't ever get myself to go back to it. ...more
Scott Wilson
Jan 03, 2019 rated it did not like it
Shelves: poker
I have read many books on poker(about 50) and this is one of the worst without question. I understand a poker players hesitancy to share their secrets with the readers but then I would suggest you don't write a book. The book is so lacking in information that it should be embarrassing to Greenstein.

If your looking to learn from the pros how to play better poker I recommend Super System 2, Dan Harringtons books or the three books by Pearljammer/Apestyles/Rizen.
Oct 29, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own-audio
Primarily a book about the mindset you should have when playing and thinking about poker, rather than a book about specific poker strategy. I've read several poker strategy books already, so I think I was ready for one like this. Good for getting your mind back in the game and helping you figure out how to think about your opponents and their possible hands. It also deals with quite a bit of away-from-the-table stuff, like making sure you have enough rest before you play. Many sections of the ...more
Tyler Jones
Jul 22, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: poker
This is a heavy book - and I mean that literally. It is printed on glossy photo-stock paper that makes it so heavy that reading in bed (as I am want to do) is difficult. It is also heavy in the sense that Greenstein attempts to link the poker life to the way life in general should be conducted. I think this is a commendable approach, but what works for him won't work for everybody on that score. Still I admire the idea that a "proper" approach to life and poker (a "balanced" approach? a ...more
Jan 29, 2017 rated it liked it
After reading this book, I'm left thinking that Barry Greenstein is a well-rounded poker player who recognises that he lost touch with his family early on and now knows that there needs to be more balance in the life. Learning that is nice, but I would haved liked to have seen a lot more on the practical side of Texas Hold'em. There is a good section on hands towards the last third of the book, but I think that it needed to be a bit longer to mske the book be of more value. As well, I would like ...more
Jun 09, 2010 rated it liked it
As far as poker books go, this one is a reasonable introduction and survey into the poker lifestyle. It's also a look at the life of poker pro Barry Greenstein and tells the story of how he became a professional. Some attention is paid to both cash game and tournament strategies and some useful (but not unique) charts are provided for reference. It's a quick read, and not bad for review if you've read other poker books, but overall this one doesn't break any new ground or cover material that ...more
Scott Goddard
Oct 25, 2016 rated it it was ok
Overall, I was slightly disappointed with the book, largely due to the fact that it goes into excessive detail about how a poker professional lives, and what, moreover, they should consider and contemplate before pursuing poker as a full-time commitment. Perhaps two stars is slightly unfair, since my sole motive for reading the book, was to acquire advanced strategy about a game I enjoy playing. Notwithstanding my denigration, it was a well-written and, towards the end, there was quite a bit ...more
Mar 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Pretty interesting, different to a lot of other poker books in that it focuses a lot on Greenstein's own history and on broader life-management skills necessary to poker success. The best sections in terms of improving your game are definitely the exhaustive drawing odds charts and discussion, and the sections where Greenstein invites the reader to analyse real tournament hands he has played and establish best play, then compare it to what actually happened.
Tim Merriman
Feb 19, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: poker players
Recommended to Tim by: Russ Dickerson
This is a fascinating book and Barry is a great poker player. I read it about three years into my poker playing hobby and still did not understand much of what is said. The pros use jargon and experience-based references so much that you will have to read this sort of book over again from time to time if you want to understand much of it. Still it's well-written and a good read if poker is your game.

Mar 28, 2014 rated it it was ok
I liked the biographical part just fine. The second part was mostly about the social nuances of being a live player. Also had a lot about not doing drugs or wasting your money on sports gambling. The third part was hand examples for tournament NLH which I didn't bother reading because I'm not interested in tournaments right now.
Dec 21, 2011 rated it really liked it
A interesting coffee table book about more than just how to play poker. It's an interesting background on one of the games most notable players. High level discussions regarding gambling, psychology, sociology, and of course poker, are reviewed in a very easy to read fashion. Full color pictures make this a great coffee table book.
Mike Hoffman
Jun 16, 2009 rated it liked it
Many people swore by this book. It was PRETTY, it was nice, but it wasn't TERRIFIC. Barry's writing comes across like his personality. Deadpan, short and incredibly bland. The things he DOES are much more interesting than the man he is. He needs someone to write things FOR him about him, because THAT would be great!
Jordan Bradford
Nov 10, 2012 rated it really liked it

I really didn't find a lot of instruction or insight into Poker in this book (Things like "Don't drink to excess while playing" are kinda obvious) but what does make this book a gem is the insight into Barry's story and the beautiful color photographs. It's more of a coffee table book than instruction manual.a
May 27, 2009 rated it liked it
A lot of color photos, not a how-to on playing cards but how-to be a professional player by being disciplined outside of poker. Takes a different slant in that Greenstein talks about how to be a pro vs. playing like a pro. Chronicles a little about his own journey and why he's called the Robin Hood of poker. Great read, doesn't really expand your knowledge of the game itself.
Sep 22, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: poker
It's entirely possible that many serious poker players need to read a book that tells them to be a decent human being. I'd like to think that I'm not one of them.

The actual discussions of hands are quite informative, though, as Greenstein is as good of a player as you'll find.
Bary's now my favourite poker player -- good expert advice for all sorts of areas of value to a budding pokerpro, like money management, choosing games to suit your skills &/or luck, & more. . .

Plus you learn a lot about Barry's personality & motivations.
Tmone75 Harris
Apr 02, 2009 rated it really liked it
This is an introductory book into real life experiences of being a professional player. (through the eyes of Greenstein)
If you are thinking about going pro, or want to live through the eyes of this guy You will love this book

Jan 19, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: poker
Definitely not as much an instructional book about how to play the game well, but more of an instructional game on how to be a good poker-playing person and what sort of life The Bear has gone through to get to where he's at. After reading it, Barry's definitely my favorite!
Sam Choi
Aug 11, 2011 rated it liked it
A pretty interesting read - not actually that much about specific poker strategies, but more an idea of what it's like to be a poker pro (and what you would be concerned about if you were one). Well-written, with good pacing.
Elliott Hayes
Aug 08, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: poker-gambling
Great mix of auto-biography and poker but calling it 'an advanced poker guide' isn't really accurate, more of an autobiography with some hand examples and tips on dealing with the emotions of playing poker for a living.
Jul 16, 2009 rated it liked it
This guy is just way too smart for me!
Raphael Clayette
Aug 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poker
Nice book, full of poker truth and life tales. A lot of photo helps the reading too. Great book from a great (generous) man.
Richard Herbert
Jul 11, 2012 rated it it was ok
Most over rated poker book of all time?
Sep 14, 2009 rated it liked it
Not a great book to learn to play poker, but some interesting insights on the lifestyle and mindset of a poker pro.
Jun 07, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: games
Knowing HOW to be good is easy. BEING good is far harder.
Aug 28, 2011 rated it liked it
This is an interesting book. This is not a how to book rather it is an insightful look at the poker world. Well written and presented. If you like/play poker you will like this book.
Glen Demers
An excellent companion to all the Sklansky/Harrington type poker books. It's more about attitude and psychology than starting hands.
Feb 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
Reviewed for Card Player; a fine book by a great mind.
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An American professional poker player, Greenstein has won a number of major events, including three at the World Series of Poker and two on the World Poker Tour. Greenstein donates his profit from tournament winnings to charities, earning him the nickname "the Robin Hood of poker".He was elected into the Poker Hall of Fame in 2011.