Best Poker Books to Read in 2023

posted by Theodora
October 27, 2022

Poker books can help players improve their game and develop a strategy to increase their chances of winning. Although there are numerous titles, only some of them are worth reading. Feeling overwhelmed with options? Don’t worry – we are here to help you. We have selected the best Poker books and presented them in this article. We have also chosen the best Poker books for beginners and the most interesting titles for advanced players who want to take their game strategy to the next level. Read on to find our top picks and learn more about each book.

Best Poker Books to Read in 2023

There is no question that books are a useful resource for players. We did comprehensive research to find what are the best Poker books you should read for valuable tips and advice, whether you are a beginner or an experienced player. So, we have put together a top of the most revealing, engaging, and influential Poker books of all time. Let’s take an in-depth look at the top Poker books that were even written to help you choose what to add to your reading list.

The Theory of Poker: How to Think Like a Professional Poker Player – David Sklansky

The Theory of Poker book cover with poker card symbols on a yellow background

Most game theorists and experienced players consider David Sklansky’s book to be one of the best books on Poker strategy. There are not many books that are deemed must-read Poker books, but The Theory of Poker is undoubtedly one of them. While maybe not an interesting or engaging read for anyone other than already knowledgeable players, Sklansky’s book contains the key theoretical elements of the game that apply to all Poker variations. By introducing and explaining important concepts of the game, the author explains what sets professional players apart from the crowd. Many of today’s top Poker players will tell you that this is the book that really changed their game. The subtitle of The Theory of Poker aptly sums it up, as it teaches everything you need to know in order to think like a professional Poker player.

Super System – Doyle Brunson

Super System poker book cover with author Doyle Brunson's name written in yellow on black background

Well, this one is a classic. One of the first Poker books to cover the strategy of the game, Super System was first published in the 1970s but is still relevant today. This longevity in itself makes Super System one of the all-time best books on Poker. This book is known as the Bible of Poker for a good reason. Written by one of the greatest Poker players, Doyle Brunson, Super System revealed game strategies that very few players were aware of at the time. What makes this book so great is that it explains in a conversational tone why there is much more to Poker than probability and luck. Just imagine how revolutionary this simple idea was back in the 1970s. It was also the first book to feature contributions from the best Poker players in the world, including Mike Caro, David Sklansky, Bobby Baldwin, David Reese, and Joey Hawthorne. While there are several later editions of Super System, the first one remains a classic and truly one of the best Poker books of all time.

Expert Strategy for No-Limit Tournaments – Dan Harrington

Expert Strategy for No-limit Tournaments poker book cover with portrait of author Dan Harrington on a blue background

Who else could give better advice on tournament strategy than Dan Harrington, who rose to fame by winning the Main Event at the 1995 World Series of Poker? This book covers everything you need to know to take your tournament play to the next level—from choosing the most advantageous seats in different circumstances to adjusting to your opponents to changing your playing style depending on the situation. All of this is essential knowledge for any serious Poker player. This book offers a wide range of tactics and information presented in an easy-to-read manner. It covers the No-Limit Hold’em game and the mathematical part of Poker. But it also focuses on tournament strategy and gives suggestions for every stage of the tournament, from the first table to the last. Note that this one is the first in a series of 3 Poker books, so you will probably want to read all of them to get closer to truly mastering the best No Limit Hold’em strategies.

The Mental Game of Poker – Jared Tendler

The Mental Game of Poker book cover with a blue vector figure of a man on a black background

As the title suggests, this book is imperative reading for players who want to learn how to better deal with the psychological side of Poker. Many players work on their technical skills but underestimate the importance of psychology in Poker, which can ultimately cost them a lot of money. Reading Tendler’s book will help you get a better understanding and learn to control the various mental aspects of your Poker game. The Mental Game of Poker contains simple, step-by-step instructions, proven methods, and practical exercises to permanently solve issues related to tilting, handling variation, emotional control, self-confidence, anxiety, and motivation. This very different approach from most other Poker books makes it an interesting read for beginners, and a must-read for advanced players.

Applications of No Limit Hold’em – Matthew Janda

Applications of no-limit Holde'em poker book cover with a poker cards circle on a black and red background

This book is a must-read for anyone who wants to master Texas Hold’em strategy. Applications of No Limit Hold’em will help you not only recognize and play the right hands but also understand why they are the right ones. The theory in this book is not meant to be complex or abstract, but to be immediately applicable by players with different levels of experience to achieve better results. Many concepts such as overbetting, balancing multiple bet ranges, donk betting, and check-raising as a preflop raiser are crucial to a player’s strategy, although few players implement them. After reading this book, you should be able to not only understand these ideas conceptually but also know how to incorporate them into your game to succeed even against the strongest opponents. Matthew Janda’s book is considered one of the best Poker books on Texas Hold’em and offers truly valuable insights that no player should ignore.

Excelling at No-Limit Hold’em – Jonathan Little

Excelling at tough no-limit hold'em games book cover with collage of author Jonathan Little and collaborators on a black and red background

This is probably one of the best Poker books out there. Some of the world’s greatest players are brought together by renowned Poker pro Jonathan Little to discuss all aspects of the game. This book will help you see how different players approach the game, which is very helpful to grow as a player. It covers a lot of topics, from poker tournaments strategy to cash game strategies and hand ranges to an introduction to GTO and the mental game of Poker. Each chapter is written by an experienced Poker player who specializes in the topic you are reading about. The book offers many different insights and perspectives on all sorts of unique situations you will come across when playing Poker, all from famous names like Phil Hellmuth, Chris Moneymaker, Mike Sexton, Jared Tendler, and many others.

Essential Poker Math – Alton Hardin

Essential poker math book cover with vector tree made out of numbers on a white background

Math is an important aspect of Poker strategy. So, whether you like it or not, you will need to know the basics. Unfortunately, not many Poker books focus on this side of the game and the ones that do are generally written in an overly complicated manner. This book is one of the best books on Poker math because it explains it in a simple and straightforward way, which can be a great advantage, especially for new players. You do not have to do complicated calculations when you play Poker, but if you understand the basic concepts of decision-making, you can improve very quickly. For example, you will learn how to quickly analyze your equity at the table, whether a drawing hand should be folded or called, and how often you need to be right to make hero calls.

Reading Poker Tells – Zachary Elwood

Reading Poker Tells book cover with portrait painting of a man on a black background

This book is a comprehensive guide to Poker tells and has been called one of the best books on Poker behavior by many Poker players, both amateurs, and professionals. Reading Poker Tells focuses on explaining people’s actions and helps you read your opponents at the table, all in a clearly written, well-organized, and most importantly, honest way. Being able to correctly interpret the behavior of other players can give you a significant advantage. The author covers the subject of Poker tells clearly and thoroughly, while giving honest advice on the subject and reminds readers that Poker tells are just one facet of a very complex game. So, even though this book is an excellent tool, you should not forget that great success takes time and a lot of practice.

Every Hand Revealed – Gus Hansen

Every hand revealed poker book cover with sepia portrait of author Gus Hansen

This one has a unique approach from most other Poker books. Every Hand Revealed takes the reader inside the mind of world-famous Poker pro Gus Hansen and follows his path to winning the Aussie Millions Championship, by revealing the hands he played and breaking down his thought process. The book shows how Hansen progressed over five days of play and analyzes the most intriguing hands, so you get to know the underlying principles of his game in detail. Another great thing about Every Hand Revealed is that it shows that even pros can make mistakes. Sometimes the author even points out badly played hands, situations when he made bad calls, and even wrong folds. It is a really fascinating read and you will definitely gain some important insights from this book. 

Elements of Poker – Tommy Angelo

Elements of Poker book cover with 3d red lines on a blue background

Similar to The Mental Game of Poker, Elements of Poker is not simply a strategy book, but a guide that shows you how to approach the game to be successful in the long run. To be successful in the long run, you need to learn how to manage your funds, when and how to cough up the money, how to find the best games, when to quit, and how to avoid tilting. This book will teach you all that and more. Elements of Poker was first published in 2007 and is considered by Poker professionals worldwide to be one of the few Poker books of recent years that is already a classic of Poker literature.

What are the Best Poker Books for Beginners?

Each Poker player has distinct needs and interests since we are all at different levels of experience. There are many great Poker books for beginners out there, but before you choose which ones to read, you should figure out what exactly you want to learn. Below, we have listed the 3 best Poker books for beginners. You will surely find the one that fits your needs among them. 

Poker for Dummies – Richard D. Harroch

When looking for the best Poker books for beginners, you will naturally come across Poker for Dummies. And for good reason. This is probably the cornerstone when it comes to beginner Poker books because it covers all the basics. This book does contain some information that may be a little outdated for today’s world. But if you leave that out, Poker for Dummies is one of those Poker books that are as relevant as ever in 2022. After reading this, you will have a good understanding of Poker jargon and all the rules and do’s and don’ts of the game.

Essential Poker Math – Alton Hardin

As soon as you start playing Poker, you will realize that a good strategy includes some mathematical knowledge. Essential Poker Math is an excellent resource and one of the best Poker books for beginners. This book is very helpful if you are a new player because it helps you understand how the game works, starting from the very basics. Alton Hardin also demonstrates how the theory works in practice by analyzing hands and breaking down various concepts. 

Super System – Doyle Brunson

As we already mentioned, Brunson’s legendary book is considered the Bible of Poker, which of course makes it a must-read for any enthusiast. Super System is rightfully included in our list of best beginner Poker books because it literally teaches you everything you need to know about the game as a beginner. The level of competition has increased considerably in modern Poker, and Doyle’s approach might no longer work in today’s high-stakes games. However, you will find that many of the techniques described in this book work very well in lower-stakes cash games and tournaments, which is probably the kind of games you will be playing the most as a beginner.

What are the Best Poker Strategy Books?

Most Poker books that improve our understanding of the game and encourage us to think more deeply about Poker strategies are worth reading. However, only some Poker strategy books have fundamentally changed the way Poker is played today. We have selected those that have had a profound impact on the game and even changed the way many players think and play. These Poker books will surely help you improve your strategy. Here are our top recommendations when it comes to Poker strategy books.

The Theory of Poker: How to Think Like a Professional Poker Player – David Sklansky

As described in the first list, The Theory of Poker is one of the best books on Poker ever written. This book covers a wide range of topics that can help you take your strategy to the next level. Although it starts out fairly simple, explaining the reasons for playing with different ante structures and calculating your pot odds, it quickly moves into a more complex analysis. There’s also a section on Poker psychology, which is essential for developing your strategy. Compared to other books on Poker strategy, this one can be a bit dry, and at times it may feel like you are reading a textbook, not a book. But maybe that’s the case with all the best Poker books. However, you can be sure that you’ll improve your game if you apply the strategies explained by Sklansky in this book. 

Harrington on Hold’em: Expert Strategy for No-Limit Tournaments – Dan Harrington

Although considered by some to be a bit dated as far as strategies go, Harrington on Hold’em is actually a fantastic introduction to Poker strategy with a lot of depth and good advice on how to improve your game. In fact, many later books on Poker strategy were based on this book. This one is part of a trilogy of Poker books and each of them presents valuable insights on how to progress as a player and develop a long-term winning strategy. 

The Mental Game of Poker – Jared Tendler

Of course, The Mental Game of Poker has to be on our list of top Poker books that help players improve their strategy. The first thing you should know about this book is that, unlike other books on Poker strategy, it is aimed at professionals or aspiring professionals. Even though casual Poker players can also benefit from reading it, The Mental Game of Poker is definitely one of those Poker books written for players who are trying to make a living playing Poker. What sets this book apart from other top Poker books is that in addition to useful strategies, it also includes practical exercises that you can work on.

Best Online Poker Books to Read on Mobile

Whether you are a beginner or already an experienced Poker player, you may be constantly looking for a better playing strategy. As we have already proven in this article, reading Poker books is a great stepping stone to success. Printed Poker books, however, can sometimes be inconvenient for various reasons. They can be difficult to find, expensive, or take up a lot of space.

There is a limitless selection of helpful information on the Internet, thanks to the best poker sites and blogs. Reading Poker books, however, is a completely different experience. If you are looking for online Poker books, we have great news! There is a wide selection of titles that you can easily find online. You can read the best online Poker books as PDFs in your browser, or directly on your mobile device.

For example, if you search for Poker books Amazon, you will come across the top Poker books sold on the website. You can get Poker books PDF for free or at very low prices and conveniently read them on most devices, including mobile devices such as your phone, tablet, or eBook reader. You can find online most of the Poker books we have discussed in this article, including The Theory of Poker, Harrington on Hold’em, The Mental Game of Poker, Poker for Dummies.

Bottom Line

Poker books are one of the best ways to gain knowledge and improve your strategy. The best Poker books will not only help you improve your understanding of the game, but will also give you valuable tips and advice that you won’t find anywhere else. In this article, we have selected titles that have had a profound impact on the game and even changed the way many players think and play. We hope you enjoyed it and found it helpful! We encourage you to constantly look for resources and keep learning to improve your strategy. May the odds be in your favor and don’t forget to always have fun at the table!


What is the best Poker book to read?

When it comes to Poker books, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach. All Poker books are different, and each of them can teach you something valuable, depending on your level of experience and what you’re looking for. You are sure to find the right one for you in our list of the best Poker books.

Is the Theory of Poker still relevant?

Yes, it is! The Theory of Poker was first published in 1978 and although some of the author’s advice is somewhat dated, the book contains a wealth of ideas and strategies that are still relevant and widely used today.

Should I read Modern Poker Theory?

Modern Poker Theory is considered one of the revolutionary Poker books, but it is recommended only for experienced players. The book focuses on Game Theory Optimal (GTO). So, if you want to deepen your knowledge on this topic, this is definitely a reliable source.

What are the best Poker strategy books?

The Theory of Poker, Harrington on Hold’em, and The Mental Game of Poker are some of the top Poker books for advanced players that will definitely help you refine your strategy.

What is the best online Poker book?

There is a wide selection of Poker books that you can easily find and read online. Actually, most of the Poker books we have presented in this article can be found online, including The Theory of Poker, Harrington on Hold’em, and The Mental Game of Poker.

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