The 5 Best Poker Books You Have To Read in 2023

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Written by: Matt E.

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These are the best poker books in 2023. These are mandatory reads in my opinion, and while poker books don't really age that gracefully, these are evergreen and will tend to last.

Poker, particularly No Limit Texas Hold'em, has been experiencing a surge in popularity over the past few years. With the rise of online poker and a growing number of amateur players eager to learn the game, there has never been a better time to delve into the world of poker books.

While the preferred (and better) options are poker training sites, YouTube videos, or courses, some books are truly solid introductions to the world of GTO poker play and sound fundamental poker concepts.

In this blog post, we will explore the best No Limit Texas Hold'em poker books, including titles such as Modern Poker Theory by Michael Acevedo and Play Optimal Poker by Andrew Brokos. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced player, these books will help you refine your skills and deepen your understanding of the game.

Modern Poker Theory: Building an Unbeatable Strategy Based on GTO Principles by Michael Acevedo

Overview

Modern Poker Theory is a comprehensive guide to understanding the game of poker from a mathematical and strategic standpoint. Michael Acevedo, a professional poker player and coach, introduces readers to the concept of Game Theory Optimal (GTO) principles and demonstrates how to apply them to poker. This book is a must-read for those who want to stay ahead of the competition.

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Key Takeaways

  • Understanding GTO: Acevedo explains GTO principles in-depth, providing readers with a solid foundation for their poker strategy.
  • Balancing Exploitative and GTO Play: The book teaches how to find the perfect balance between exploitative and GTO play, maximizing your edge against different types of opponents.
  • Range Construction and Analysis: Readers will learn how to construct and analyze hand ranges, allowing them to make better decisions at the table.
  • Poker Mathematics: The book covers essential poker mathematics, such as pot odds, implied odds, and expected value, helping players make informed decisions.
  • Post-flop Play: Acevedo delves into post-flop play, teaching readers how to navigate tricky situations and maximize their equity.

Play Optimal Poker: Practical Game Theory for Every Poker Player by Andrew Brokos

Overview

Andrew Brokos, a professional poker player and coach offers a practical approach to incorporating game theory into your poker strategy in Play Optimal Poker. This book is perfect for players who want to improve their decision-making and reduce their mistakes at the table.

Play Optimal Poker 2: Range Construction is a great follow-up to the first book, and honestly, you can read these both as one large book that covers everything you need to know about poker theory.

Key Takeaways

  • Game Theory Simplified: Brokos breaks down complex game theory concepts into easy-to-understand explanations, making it accessible to players of all skill levels.
  • Nash Equilibrium: The book introduces the concept of Nash Equilibrium and explains its importance in poker strategy.
  • Strategic Adjustments: Brokos offers guidance on making strategic adjustments based on your opponents' tendencies and mistakes.
  • Hand Reading and Exploiting Opponents: The book teaches readers how to read hands and exploit their opponents' weaknesses for maximum profit.
  • Tournament Strategy: Play Optimal Poker includes a section on tournament strategy, helping players navigate the unique challenges of tournament play.

The Theory of Poker: A Professional Poker Player Teaches You How to Think Like One by David Sklansky

I got my copy of The Theory of Poker right here. ^

Overview

The Theory of Poker, written by renowned poker author David Sklansky, is a classic poker book that has stood the test of time. Although not solely focused on No Limit Texas Hold'em, the concepts and strategies discussed in the book are highly applicable to the game.

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Key Takeaways

  • Fundamental Theorem of Poker: Sklansky introduces the Fundamental Theorem of Poker, which is the cornerstone of any solid poker strategy.
  • Expected Value: The book covers the concept of expected value and its importance in making profitable decisions at the poker table.
  • Poker Mathematics: Sklansky delves into poker mathematics, teaching readers how to calculate pot odds, implied odds, and probability.
  • Position and Betting: The book emphasizes the importance of position and betting, offering guidance on how to use these concepts to your advantage.
  • Psychology and Bluffing: The Theory of Poker discusses the psychological aspects of the game, including reading opponents and successful bluffing techniques.

Expert Heads-Up No Limit Hold'em: Expert Advice for Winning Heads-Up Poker Matches by Will Tipton

Overview

Expert Heads-Up No Limit Hold'em, written by Will Tipton, is a must-read for players who want to excel in one-on-one poker situations. Tipton, a professional poker player with a background in mathematics, provides a detailed and systematic approach to mastering heads-up play.

Key Takeaways

  • Heads-Up Strategy: Tipton focuses on the unique aspects of heads-up play and offers strategies for dominating your opponents in this format.
  • Hand Ranges: The book teaches readers how to construct and analyze heads-up hand ranges, allowing them to make better decisions in one-on-one situations.
  • Adapting to Opponents: Tipton emphasizes the importance of adapting your play based on your opponent's tendencies, strengths, and weaknesses.
  • GTO and Exploitative Play: The book covers both GTO and exploitative play in heads-up poker, helping readers find the right balance between the two.
  • Post-flop Play: Tipton provides in-depth analysis and advice on post-flop play in heads-up situations, covering bet sizing, bluffing, and more.

Applications of No-Limit Hold'em: A Guide to Understanding Theoretical Sound Poker by Matthew Janda

Overview

Applications of No-Limit Hold'em, authored by the professional poker player and coach Matthew Janda, is a comprehensive guide to developing a theoretically sound poker strategy. Janda breaks down complex concepts and provides practical applications for players looking to improve their game.

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Key Takeaways

  • Balancing Your Strategy: Janda emphasizes the importance of balancing your poker strategy to make it harder for opponents to exploit you.
  • Range Construction: The book covers the process of constructing pre-flop and post-flop ranges, helping readers make better decisions at the table.
  • Poker Mathematics: Janda dives into poker mathematics, teaching readers how to calculate pot odds, equity, and more.
  • Board Texture: The book discusses the importance of board texture and how it influences hand strength and decision-making.
  • Hand Reading: Janda provides guidance on hand reading and exploiting opponents' tendencies for maximum profit.

Conclusion

Each of these No Limit Texas Hold'em poker books offers invaluable insights and strategies for players looking to improve their game. By studying the concepts and techniques presented in these books, you will develop a well-rounded and theoretically sound approach to poker. Remember that practice is key, so apply what you've learned from these books at the table to truly master the art of No Limit Texas Hold'em poker.

Written by

Matt E.

I've been immersed in the world of poker since 2003. Poker is hard. It has undoubtedly been a roller coaster of experiences for me over the years. My poker journey spans from playing at .01/.02 NL tables to engaging in intense sessions at $5/$10. Poker isn't just a game to me—it's a passion. Outmaneuvering opponents in this test of mental strength and strategy offers an unparalleled thrill. To deepen my understanding of the game and to assist others, I initiated this blog. It aims to elucidate the ever-evolving technologies, strategies, and legal landscapes of poker, especially in the online realm. We're now in the age of solvers, but both online and live poker continue to thrive. A quick visit to a local $1/3 game would be ample evidence of its vitality. Regardless of your proficiency level, from novice to expert, I hope my blog posts offer you valuable insights. Feel free to engage with me through messages or by commenting on my posts. Cheers!

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