I am very tardy. Very, very, tardy.
Tommy Angelo sent me a copy of his latest book “A Rubber Band Story and Other Poker Tales” several months ago and I haven’t gotten around to reviewing it yet.
I don’t really offer this as an excuse but life has been very busy for me lately. Black Friday, getting married, my move back to the US, starting a new job, having to buy a car and find an apartment, blah, blah, blah. It’s been a hectic few months.
Like I said, that’s not really an excuse. The real excuse is that A Rubber Band Story is easy to put down. No, no, no. Please don’t take that the wrong way. It’s the format of the book. It’s a collection of short stories and essays about random thoughts, views, and observations Tommy has had about poker and life.
My massive delay in getting through the book is that it is so easy to read a story that lasts a page or two and then to set the book down as you ponder the greater meaning of the anecdote. The whirlwind pace that my life has followed since Black Friday often meant a week or two between picking the book back up and I didn’t want to power through 4 or 5 essays at a time and miss out on enjoying each one.
With the apologies, excuses, and other useless slobbering out of the way allow me to give A Rubber Band Story two raging thumbs up. If you like Tommy’s style or writing and have enjoyed the short stories he’s submitted on Bill’s Poker Blog you’ll love A Rubber Band Story because that’s basically what the book is.
It has all of the hallmark Tommy Angelo qualities. It’s humorous, well written, insightful, offbeat, thought provoking, and sometimes just plain silly. What I enjoy most about Tommy’s writing style is that he writes from the heart.
The book is a mixture of some new material along with what Tommy felt were his best blog posts, articles, postings, etc over the last decade or so. The information is timeless because it’s the essence of poker.
Tommy’s writings have never been about whether to fold AJs to a reraise pre-flop. It’s about getting in touch with our biggest leak in poker, ourselves. He explores different ways of thinking about the game, life, and balancing the two. And he’s able to do that through story telling that leaves most poker writers in the dust.
It’s easy to be entertained by Tommy’s stories because they’re normally witty and light but that’s often a trick Tommy is able to play on his readers because there is a more profound message underneath it all. He may write a story about folding that makes you chuckle but when you dive a little deeper he’s really seeding a message about how successful players think about their starting hands and folding differently.
If you’re a fan of any of Tommy’s writings you can find on Bill’s Poker Blog or on Tommy’s own site, you’ll love A Rubber Band Story.