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addabook - Bringing Down the House
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Bringing Down the House
The Inside Story of Six M.I.T. Students Who Took Vegas for Millions
Ben Mezrich
read on January 25, 2010

It's hard to resist a book about MIT geniuses turned card counting experts and make millions in Vegas. This book is a fun little diddy about the MIT team's exploits and success, and ultimate demise. The book itself isn't really that well written, but it was certainly good enough to keep the story moving, which is all I really wanted. In a way, this book was actually very similar to Den of Thieves. Smart people gaming the system for quick cash. Card counting isn't illegal... but close enough to it that you never want to get caught- as the book makes pretty clear.

If anything, the book was a bit depressing to read knowing full well that I'm not as smart as these guys. I really hate it anytime I read about someone younger than me making a boatload of money... even these guy's day jobs were making them rich, outside of the tens of thousands they made each weekend in Vegas. It's always encouraging though to read about folks that beat the system with their ingenuity. It's often easy to assume that the systems that are currently in place are there because they're good, because they've been vetted and are fool proof. Turns out no, it's all just a crapshoot.

Oh well. Fun spacer book to read in between the heavier finance ones I've been doing.

Author Bio:

Ben Mezrich (born February 7, 1969) is an American author from Princeton, New Jersey, United States. Mezrich was born in Boston, Massachusetts, the son of Molli Newman, a lawyer, and Dr. Reuben Mezrich, a chairman of radiology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. He was raised in a conservative Jewish household and attended Princeton Day School, in Princeton, New Jersey. He graduated magna cum laude with a degree in Social Studies from Harvard University in 1991. Some of his books have been written under the pseudonym Holden Scott. He is known for his non-fiction books. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts. He has been married to Tonya M. Chen since 2006.