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By Howard Schwartz--Gambler's Book Shop            

Bill Zender is a dedicated jack-of-all-trades. He’s a former casino manager, and was a gaming enforcement agent. He’s also an expert on casino surveillance who has written a book that anyone worth his salt should read. It’s a text that will help improve the plight of the player or the house. Titled Casino-ology--The Art of Managing Casino Games, the 313-page paper bound work ($39.95) covers some of the most recent changes made by casino management for the player and answers many of the questions players have asked in the past year.

There are almost three dozen chapters divided into the four major sections—Blackjack, Casino Management, Game Protection and Live-Game Management.

Perhaps the most valuable or innovative areas include proper treatment of Asian players include vital table etiquette by the house and an analysis of the most recent innovations by players involving dice control.

Zender, always active and aware of trends impacting bet makers and bet takers, examines the newer 6-to-5 (compared to the original three for two) blackjack payoffs; a need for more protection of the baccarat and mini-baccarat games where major cheating scandals have increased in recent years and a close look at the effectiveness of continuous shuffling machines.

Pressures on the dealers to deliver more hands per hour are always there. Zender focuses on “live game pace” and the impact of speeding up decisions in roulette, craps and 21.

An expert on detecting cheats, the author offers tips on detection of moves like marking cards and “past-posting” (betting after the decision has been made in a game).

With a handy index and more than 30 tables showing the effect of changing deck penetration in a six-deck game and the increase in theoretic hold percentage and the like, it’s mandatory reading for veterans and newcomers to casino management and should be required reading for anyone planning a career in the gaming industry.

Any item reviewed here is available from Gambler's Book Shop (Gambler's Book Club). The store's web site is You may order there using MasterCard, VISA or Discover (no CODs please) or by phoning the store any day except Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Pacific time at 1-800-522-1777. Orders usually shipped the next working day. You may view the store's complete array of books, videos and software via the Web site or request a hard copy of the catalog be mailed free and first class. The store has moved to a new location: 1550 E. Tropicana #4, Las Vegas NV 89119.