The Biggest Bluff” Is Coming To Paperback

By Ben Hamill - June 04 2021

“The Biggest Bluff” Is Coming To Paperback

Bestselling author Maria Konnikova’s “The Biggest Bluff” is officially being launched in paperback format on June 8. And the Doctor of Psychology, who is also the author of three best-selling books, will on the date of launch sit down to discuss the book with Nate Silver.

Initially published last year, The Biggest Bluff, a book that is part-thesis, part memoir, explores the overlap between psychology, philosophy, and Poker, while remaining firmly rooted in real life and its everyday joys and challenges.

More than anything, The Biggest Bluff is an ode to Poker, with the author, who also happens to be a professional player, delving deep into her own personal journey with the game after a year she describes as one of the most challenging periods of her life so far. 

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Life Through Poker’s Lens

What Konnikova does exceptionally well is to invite the reader to view reality through the lens of the game, with Poker becoming a way to scrutinise and analyse the human psychological reaction to good times and bad, good luck as well as bad. This makes of the book an exploration into the author’s own decision-making processes – with a strong focus on the precarious balance and interplay between control and chance.

During a recent interview, Wray Herbert described Konnikova’s book, which is subtitled, “How I learned to pay attention, master myself, and win, as an attempt to understand the personal motivations of an individual with no former Poker experience who at a specific point in time decided to take on a seemingly romanticised sort of a pursuit. This, said Herbert, makes of the book an exploration of both the journey itself as well as the underlining factors of that journey.

Poker Reflects Real Life

But more than merely the insights gained by Konnikova about herself and her own personal journey, the book puts strong emphasis on the author’s pride derived from being an active member of the Poker community.

Konnikova says she drew a great deal of inspiration from the work of Hungarian American mathematician and engineer John van Neumann, the man largely credited with being the father of “game theory”, and who drew the very foundation of his own theories and ideas from Poker.

Konnikova says also says she firmly believes, just like Von Neumann did, that Poker reflects the everyday nuances and progression of real life. And it’s this belief Konnikova says had ultimately inspired her to compete in the World Series of Poker – an ideal once upon a time but a mountainous and improbable goal. But no longer so.

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