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Bringing Down the House : The Inside Story of Six MIT Students Who Took Vegas for Millions   book icon  
by Ben Mezrich (2002)

read: 28 October 2006
rating: [+]
category: non-fiction

This is an odd story which is told like some sort of hollywood movie, yet it involves real people committing some very real crimes. The author has a connection with one of the people involved in part of the story and the rest of the story is told through this possibly disgruntled person’s eyes. It’s all about a ring of smart MIT students who used a system to play blackjack with teams and break the bank, or at least always win, at Vegas casinos. The whole time they were on this team, they were “run” by some shady underworld figures that no one really knew very well. Towards the end they start getting figured out and things get desperate, some people decide to stick it out in the risker business of evading tighter and tighter scrutiny and some got out. This book describes it all in detail. The system, the steps they took to avoid getting caught, the steps the casinos took to shut them down. It’s an interesting wacky caper story with the “criminal masterminds” just being some average suburban kids with a good head for math. Good reading, drops off a bit towards the end and definitely an early book by an author whose better writing is probably ahead of him.

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