For Richer, For Poorer: A Love Affair with Poker

For Richer, For Poorer: A Love Affair with Poker

Victoria Coren

Language: English

Pages: 352

ISBN: 1847672914

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


In September 2006, Victoria Coren won a million dollars on the European Poker Tour. In her long-awaited memoir, she tells the story of that victory, but also of a 20-year obsession with the game. It is a journey which has taken Coren from a secret culture of illegal cash games to the high-stakes glamour of Las Vegas and Monte Carlo, and brought with it friendship, laughter, and money, but also loneliness, heartbreak, and defeat. With disarming honesty, Coren lays all of this bare. For Richer, For Poorer also tells the story of the poker revolution. How did this cult card game, populated by a small community of colorful and eccentric players, move from the back streets to the mainstream in a few short years? It is a fascinating story from a trusted insider.

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is in a bad mood. He’s been arguing with Pierre again. James runs a voiceover business and he made the mistake of forming a partnership with French Pierre, one of his ‘voices’. This has caused nothing but trouble. James is tense all the time now. When Hugo complains that James’s dog is farting under the table, James snaps at him. James loves that dog. Pierre comes to the game, too. Pierre looks like a Goscinny & Uderzo cartoon. He has a walrus moustache, blazing tattoos and a comedy French

amount of money. I wouldn’t pay £1,500 to enter a poker tournament and I wouldn’t pay £500 – I’ve never paid more than £50. So I persuade the Sunday Times to take an article about the experience, in return for the buy-in money. I tell them it will be a great story if I win it, and I have every chance. I am lying. ♠ Arriving nervously at the studio, I immediately recognize a handful of Vic players I’ve never spoken to. One of them I remember in particular, because I’ve been told a story about

people whose money he will be trying to take tomorrow. ‘Well, it’s inevitable,’ Ross says, ‘because the same faces travel the poker circuit. You arrive in a new city and there are the Birmingham crew, the Irish crew, different mobs from different countries. We’re out to get their money, and they’re out to get ours, but here we are shaking hands, “How’s it going?”, “Are you winning?”, and we’re genuinely happy to see each other.’ There is no dress code here. Casinos on the mainland have a dress

normal and natural to me. Midnight is when poker is played. I have been far more disadvantaged by televised matches that are played, for studio reasons, in the morning. As the others start to yawn and yearn for their beds more than victory, I am just starting to wake up. One by one, they sleepwalk out of the game and soon enough I am heads-up with Dr Raj. This proves a surprisingly easy match-up because, despite all his scientific qualifications, he doesn’t seem to have worked out that all the

By the time I leave university, comedy has changed. It has developed an unexpected cool streak. Articles in newspapers are describing it as ‘the new rock and roll’. Comedians have become sex symbols. They have groupies. They have managers and TV deals. They don’t seem to be the community of outsiders that attracted me in the first place. They have become the in-crowd. So, the natural path is to settle back behind a typewriter and try to craft my jokes from there. Broadsheet newspaper readers are

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