21 Blackjack Books Every Player Should Read

21 Blackjack Books Every Player Should Read

I’ve put together a list of 21 blackjack books that every player should read.

This list includes books for beginners, intermediate players, and experts. By finding and reading the books listed below you can get a complete education in blackjack.

1 – Beat the Dealer

Edward Oakley Thorp is an American mathematics professor and blackjack player from Chicago, Illinois. He’s known as both the father of card counting for his revolutionary work in blackjack and father of the wearable computer after making the first wearable computer and using it in a casino.

He received a Ph. D in mathematics in 1958 and worked as a professor from 1959 to 1982.  During this time he developed his blackjack theory which was based on the Kelly criterion.

Over 50 years have passed since Thorp wrote Beat the Dealer and it’s still influencing how people play blackjack today. Beat the Dealer was the first book to mathematically prove you can use card counting to beat the house advantage.

His point based system revolutionized how blackjack was played. Using his system you assess the composition of the remaining cards in the deck and bet based on this. His book covers basic rules, how to overcome casino counter measures, winning strategies for any level player, charts to illustrate concepts, and ways to spot cheating.

2 – Professional Blackjack

Stanford Wong is the pen named used by John Ferguson, who is a gambling author and member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame. He created one of the first blackjack odds analyzing software called “Blackjack Analyzer” for personal use, but it later became commercially available.

Wong’s interest in blackjack started in 1964 when he was teaching a finance course. He left his teaching job to pursue his dream of a gambling career. His pen name Wong refers to an advantage in blackjack that he made popular in the 1980s.

Wong’s most popular book, Professional Blackjack, was published in 1975. His book covers what all blackjack players want to know; how to win without getting kicked out of a casino.

While reading his book you’ll learn the basics of blackjack, the High Low count system he uses, the three level Wong Halves Count, and information about the Over / Under 13 side game that can be found in some casinos. At the end of his book you’ll find 100 pages worth of charts showing various things related to the game.

3 – The Theory of Blackjack

Peter A Griffin is one of the original seven Blackjack Hall of Fame members, mathematician, and author. His first interest in blackjack was in 1970 when he went to Nevada to do research for a course on the mathematics of gambling. After losing all his money, he was determined to do further research.

In 1979 his book Theory of Blackjack was published and it became a blackjack classic. His book shares the methods behind today’s card counting system. He provides his techniques to determining the accuracy of a card counting system, how to analyze betting and playing strategies for any system, and finding the basic strategy for playing any set of rules and any number of decks. Although his book covers the background of card counting, it’s more mathematically based than your average blackjack book.

4 – Blackbelt in Blackjack

Arnold Snyder is a member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame and was making a living playing blackjack when he started writing books. He felt the need to write about blackjack because it bothered him to see all the bad information being put out by so called experts who didn’t even play the game.

His book Blackbelt in Blackjack was published in 1983. It’s said this book is for professional players who are looking to further their winning ability but this book covers the basics of blackjack to the more advanced techniques. His book covers everything you need to know on blackjack such as team play, multiple deck camouflage techniques, pros shuffle tracking, 7 count, zen count, true count, hi lo count, and more.

5 – Blackjack for Blood

Bryce Carlson started playing blackjack in 1970. His interest in blackjack didn’t stem from wanting to make a lot of money; it was from wanting to beat the casino. Carlson gained his blackjack knowledge by reading many great books and trading tips with several famous blackjack players he got to meet over the years.

His book Blackjack for Blood was published in 2001. It’s for people who don’t know anything about blackjack but want to get started. His book starts with blackjack basics and then goes to the information he learned from world class players. He covers the strategy he personally uses while playing, the Advanced Omega II System for card counting. Carlson developed the Omega II Blackjack Machine, which is computer software that helps him analyze blackjack so he can improve his playing.

6 – Knock Out Blackjack

Knock Out Blackjack was published in 1998 and written by Ken Fuchs and Olaf Vancura. This book teaches you The KO Count. This count was a revolutionary new way to count cards.

The belief that the Hi Lo involved too much counting and took the fun out of the game is what led Fuchs and Vancura to write this book. They developed the KO Count by making one major change to the Hi Lo method. This change is that 7 is a low card instead of a neutral. When you see a 7, you add a one to the count. This leads to an unbalanced system.

This book goes into depth of how the KO Count method works and some suggestions on how to play the game while using this method.

7 – Playing Blackjack as a Business

Lawrence Revere was a controversial figure in the world of gambling because he was both a player and worked for the casino. He played under several aliases such as Leonard Speck Parsons and Paul Mann. He was a pit boss, owner, troubleshooter, dealer, and professional Blackjack player over the course of 28 years. His first introduction to blackjack was when he was 13 and began dealing blackjack in home state of Iowa.

His book Playing Blackjack as a Business was published in 1971 and includes strategies he developed with the high speed computers made by Julian H. Bruan with the IBM Corporation. These counting strategies are The Revere Point Count, The Revere Five Count Strategy, The Reverse Plus Minus Strategy, and The Ten Count Strategy.

His Revere Point Count is considered a benchmark strategy. He also had a high level strategy called Revere Advanced Point Count but it’s unnecessarily complicated and rarely used today.

8 – The World’s Greatest Blackjack Book

The World’s Greatest Blackjack Book by Ken Cooper and Lance Humble was published in 1980.

This book is a complete system blackjack card counting book. It starts with information about blackjack and why card counters can win. It then jumps into the social part of blackjack card counting such as reading the dealer, talking to the pit boss, choosing the casino, and when it’s time to make a fast exit.

You then learn about the card counting system promoted in this book, Hi Opt 1 counting system using a side count of aces. After that the book covers private blackjack games, playing multiple hands, additional tips, and more.

9 – Million Dollar Blackjack

Ken Uston was a famous blackjack player best known for his concept of team play blackjack. He graduated from Yale with honors and was Senior Vice President of the Pacific Stock Exchange when he gave up his career to peruse blackjack.

He was first famous for earning millions of dollars from casino. He was then famous for being banned from many casinos around the world causing him to disguise himself to get back into these casinos.

Uston filled a high profile law suit that said casinos couldn’t ban someone for card counting, and he won. This caused casinos everywhere to change their blackjack rules and increase the decks in a game.

His book Million Dollar Blackjack was published in 1982 and includes all of his knowledge related to blackjack and his experiences throughout his gambling career.

10 – Blackjack Attack

Donald Schlesinger is a member of the Blackjack Hall of Fame and author of Blackjack Attack which is widely considered one of the most important books relating to blackjack today.

Blackjack Attack is a collection of Schlesinger’s articles from the Blackjack Forum of Arnold Snyder. First published in 1997, it’s currently in its third edition which has twice as much information as the second edition.

This book is for players that already have a good understanding of basic blackjack information and card counting and have played it in a live game setting. He covers camouflage, risk analysis, systems comparison, optimal betting, team play, and more. The third edition added his reexamination of Peter Griffin’s work and the most accurately devised basic strategy and effects of removal charts.

11 – Basic Blackjack

Another great blackjack book by Stanford Wong, Basic Blackjack was published in 1992. Basic Blackjack covers what the title says, the basics of blackjack. It covers the basic strategy variations in blackjack found whenever blackjack can be found.

He goes over common rule variations like whether the dealer hits soft seventeen or the number of decks. He also covers uncommon rule variations and how they change the player’s strategy and expectations.

At the end of the book you also find information about tells, warps, and other tricks. These last three chapters of the book have been debated as crossing the line from advantage to cheating.

12 – Play Blackjack Like the Pros

Play Blackjack Like the Pros was published in 2005 and is an instructional book by Kevin Blackwood. Blackwood is a professional blackjack player and has played in the Ultimate Blackjack Tour and the World Series of Blackjack.

In his book he teaches the million dollar strategies he uses. You’ll learn about blackjack in high and low stakes casinos, shoe games, online, and tournaments. As with most blackjack books you start with an overview of the game but then he teaches his own card counting method for novice, recreational or professional.

His book also covers information about money management, team play, and camouflaging techniques. Blackwood also shares his stories and successes at the table.

13 – Blackjack Essays

Mason Malmuth is a professional gambler that has written over 600 articles and 20 books. In 1978 Malmuths interest in gambling sparked during an overnight stop in Las Vegas on his way to California. 9 years later in 1987 he left his corporate job to pursue a career in gambling and gambling writer full time. He currently owns Two Plus Two Publishing.

His book Blackjack Essay was published in 1996 and is aimed at advanced blackjack players.

Blackjack Essay covers:

  • Shuffle tracking
  • Blackjack biases
  • Theoretical concepts
  • Current blackjack
  • Supplemental strategies
  • Mistaken ideas
  • Playing in a casino
  • Front loading
  • Obsolete techniques
  • Gambler’s ruin
  • Back counting
  • The one deck game
  • Betting strategies
  • Becoming a professional
  • Casino preparation
  • Heads up play
  • First basing
  • And more.

14 – Blackjack Blueprint

Rick “Night Train” Blaine is a well known professional blackjack player who brings in a mid-seven figure salary from his blackjack playing alone. He plays blackjack all over the world alone and also as a blackjack team player or leader. He’s best known for his teaching skills for new blackjack players.

His book Blackjack Blueprint was published in 2005 and has everything you need to know about blackjack and how to make money playing it. You learn about card counting, basic strategy, maximizing potential, playing solo or on a team, tournaments, shuffle tracking, casino comps, playing in disguise, outwitting the eye in the sky, and more.

His revised edition also contains new information about rebates on gambling losses, disguising wins, hiding chips, risk of identity theft, personal privacy, and more. His main point of the book is a blueprint layout of how you can make blackjack a part time money making career.

15 – Get the Edge at Blackjack

Get the Edge at Blackjack was published in 2003 and written by John May. This book takes you into the secret world of professional blackjack players to teach you how to win like the pros and beat the casinos.

Casinos now use high tech mechanisms that allow them to count cards with the players and use facial recognition to look through disguises. With these new improvements, winning at the casino hasn’t been harder.

In his book, May covers dealer hole card play, automatic shuffling machines, exploiting dealer errors, Kelly betting, and more. All the subjects May covers are lightly gone over and refer you to many books that go over the specific subject in greater detail.

16 – Golden Touch Blackjack Revolution!

Frank Scoblete, also known as King Scobe, is author of Gold Touch Blackjack Revolution!, which was published in 2006. Scoblete’s interest in gambling first started while he was in Atlantic City doing research for the part of a gambler in a play. In 1989 he left the theatre company and started writing about gambling.

In his book you learn about the easiest advantage blackjack method ever developed, Speed Count. Speed count is considered by some less powerful that both the Knock Out count and the Hi Low.

But this is not believed by everyone and the Speed Count is much easier to learn than the traditional count.

17 – Modern Blackjack

Modern Blackjack was written by Norm Wattenberger and published in 2010.

His book covers:

  • Over a 100 variations
  • Modern basic strategy
  • Casino heat
  • Modern card counting systems
  • Current casino conditions
  • Scams and myths
  • Casino comportment
  • Strategy comparisons
  • Hole carding
  • Shuffle tracking
  • Spanish 21 hole carding
  • And team play.

His book goes into great details and shows the remarkable amount of research he put into each subject. Modern Blackjack teaches you everything you need to know from blackjack basics to the advanced strategies used by blackjack professionals.

18 – Blackjack Bluebook II

Blackjack Bluebook II was written by Fred Renzey and was originally published in 2003. This book is a handbook on how to play blackjack and win legitimately at casinos. It contains many visual scenarios and a color coded strategy chart to help you grasp the basic strategy of the game.

He disproves many blackjack myths and correctly shows how to play several hands that are usually misplayed. You learn 3 different card counting systems for entry level up to professional. It also includes the KISS count and many outside of box tips that are rarely written about. These include:

  • The Magnificent 7 Hands
  • Profiting from Other Players’ Hands
  • Hi Card / Lo Card Layouts
  • True Fudging with Unbalanced Counts
  • The Nifty 15
  • And The Ace / 10 Front Count.

19 – Big Book of Blackjack

Another book by the Blackjack Hall of Fame member Arnold Snyder, Big Book of Blackjack was published in 2006. This book is a big book of everything you need to know about blackjack.

Snyder fills this book with his over 25 years of experience in blackjack advice for players of all stages from beginning to advance players. Along with his guidance he includes winning techniques that have never been in a nationally distributed book. He focuses on both teaching you how to play blackjack and keeping the fun of the game while winning.

20 – Blackjack Wisdom

Blackack Wisdom was written by Arnold Snyder and is a collection of his best articles. This book isn’t a guide to blackjack with a certain method; it’s a mixture of all the blackjack information Snyder has written and learned about over the years.

You’ll read how Snyder keeps blackjack fun with his humorous remarks throughout the book. He also talks about several other blackjack books and why you need to read them to build on your blackjack knowledge.

21 – Winning Blackjack for the Serious Player

Winning Blackjack for the Serious Player was written by Edwin Silberstang and published in 1993. His book covers the basic rules of the game as well as a simple card counting method.

It includes:

  • Five practice quizzes
  • Money management
  • Tipping guide
  • Eight rules of self-discipline
  • And sage advice for being a winner

His book also includes basic strategy charts based on location such as Vegas or Atlantic City. This book doesn’t go in depth about advanced card counting strategies and only covers the Hi Low counting method. It’s an easy to read book to help you get serious about playing blackjack.


21 blackjack books every player should read has a book for everyone. Among these books you can find ones that teach you the basics of blackjack to books that teach you professional strategy and secret methods used by the pros.

It doesn’t matter if you’re looking for mathematically proven systems, how to make a load of money, or how to keep the fun in the game, you can find a book that fits your needs here.

Petko Stoyanov
Get in touch with Petko
About Petko Stoyanov
My name is Petko Stoyanov, and I've been a gambling writer for more than ten years. I guess that was the natural path for me since I've loved soccer and card games for as long as I can remember! I have a long and fairly successful history with English Premier League betting and online poker, but I follow many other sports. I watch all big European soccer leagues, basketball, football, and tennis regularly, and I keep an eye on snooker, volleyball, and major UFC events.