The idea is to write about some favorite books
that you read before you started blogging!
24/7: Living It Up and Doubling Down
by Andres Martinez
Amazon.com Review: Perhaps the most fun of a bushel of books about the “new” Las Vegas, 24/7 is as surreal and addictive as a hot game of blackjack at 4 a.m. In this first-person chronicle of a month in Las Vegas, Andrés Martinez whirls through casinos and hotels with his $50,000 book advance, taking notes on characters, nightclubs, and hotel lobbies between wild betting sprees at the blackjack table or roulette wheel. Part of what makes 24/7 enjoyable is the fact that Martinez is no down-and-out gambler, but a former lawyer with an Ivy League pedigree whose main vice seems to be an addiction to Diet Coke. He takes to his exploits with the intoxication of someone released from dull routine, without ever falling down on the job. As a result, he’s never too delirious to note the weirdest details of this desert mirage. It’s a city “where buildings themselves perform,” lined with such features as a Jules Verne theme park, erupting volcanoes, and battling pirate ships. Early on, the author gets philosophical: “What type of city did we build in the middle of a desert, a metropolis with no reason, beyond our willpower and playful imagination, to exist?” Anyone who’s ever asked themselves the same question will satisfy their curiosity with this entertaining, firsthand view of the fastest-growing city in America.
Why I Liked It
I’m not a gambler, but my husband enjoys it (and I enjoy it when he wins). So this was a book that my husband found, but I ended up reading it and really enjoying it — mostly because the author isn’t a “professional” gambler so his approaches are delightfully amateurish and amusing as he takes on baccarat, slots, roulette, blackjack and more. (Though if I got a $50,000 book advance, you’d never catch me risking it in Vegas.) The books is an easy, fun read but also full of interesting tidbits about the “new” Vegas and how the casino comp system works. I actually enjoy Las Vegas — the spectacle, glitz and absurdity of it is just mind-blowing to me — so reading this book and experiencing what it is like to be a”big time” gambler via Martinez’s writing was a vicarious thrill. One of the better books I’ve seen on gambling and Vegas in general.