Monday, May 30, 2016

The Noble Hustle: Poker, Beef Jerky, and Death by Colson Whitehead

I wasn't a big fan of Mr. Whitehead's novels, Zone One and Intuitionist. So why did I imagine that this would be any better? Chalk it up to (uncalled for) optimism.

This is autobiographical; it covers Mr. Whitehead's participation in the 2011 World Series of Poker tournament. The big problem with this book is that is seems to reveal the author's genuine personality. Yikes. Mr. Whitehead refers to himself as a native of the "Republic of Anhedonia," and that pretty much says it all. Anhedonia is the inability to take pleasure from normally pleasurable experiences.

Oy, no wonder he refers to a recent divorce. Mr. Whitehead, it seems, is not so much of an optimist. Given my experience with his novels, he probably wouldn't have spent the $3.28 (with free shipping) for a used copy of this book. I kind of wish I hadn't either. Oh well.

Mr. Whitehead's writing is occasionally interesting and there are enjoyable moments in the book. They are few. Spoiler alert: he doesn't win the big payout at the tournament. No surprise: not having built up a ton of relationship capital with his reader, I don't really care.

No comments: