District 13 - ACBL
Recommended Reading for Advancing Beginners

These books are recommended for players who have progressed beyond the "just beginning" stage, and who want to improve their technical skills and understanding of defense and the play of the hand. These are not the only books available, but the reviewer has read each of these books at least twice (and has them in his personal library), and can recommend them without reservation. The reviewer has no financial interest in the sale of any of these books. The list is in no way complete; there are lots of good books available, but you cannot go wrong with any of the recommendations.

Most of these books are somewhat like a workbook; you should work through all of the examples and quizzes, and, if necessary, come back to the quizzes at a later date (several weeks?) if you do not get all of the answers correct the first time through. You have to be willing to invest some time to get the full benefit. All of these books are very well-written, and have virtually no typos or other distractions.

If the book is not available at your bookstore or library: Sorry! Ask at your local bridge club. You may have to put up a financial deposit to borrow a copy from a member (Sadly, bridge players are not very good at returning borrowed bridge materials! I KNOW! and I am guilty too! All you sinners! Return what you have borrowed and hoarded!)

All of these recommendations from the webmaster and, I think, at least one past president of District 13
Defense How to Defend a Bridge Hand. William S. Root. Crown Trade Paperbacks. New York. 1994. 410 pages. Others (who should know) have stated that Bill Root (now deceased) taught more bridge players than any other teacher in bridge history.
Opening Leads. Mike Lawrence. C&T Bridge Supplies. Los Alamitos, CA. 1996. 289 pages. All of his books are good, but I think this is one of his best.
Defensive Bridge Play Complete. Edwin B. Kantar. Wilshire Book Company. 1974. 528 pages. Called the "Big Red Book" by booksellers. Apparently created on a TYPEWRITER! May be hard to find. I believe that "Eddie Kantar Teaches Modern Bridge Defense" is a 1990's version of this book (I do not have this later work, but see following entry for the 2nd book in the series, which I do have).
Eddie Kantar Teaches Advanced Bridge Defense. Edwin B. Kantar. Master Point Press. Toronto. 1999. 240 pages. I'm not sure that you need to read one of the above 2 books by Kantar before you read this, but it probably would not hurt. If this book seems too advanced, put it down, and return when you are ready.
Declarer Play How to Play a Bridge Hand. William S. Root. Three Rivers Press. New York. 1990. 309 pages. Great examples and quizzes.
Card Play Technique. Victor Mollo and Nico Gardener. George Newnes Limited. London. 1955. 384 pages. Perhaps hard to find. Look for a reprint.
General Judgment at Bridge. Mike Lawrence. Devyn Press, Inc. Louisville, KY. 1976. 151 pages. Although most examples are about bidding situations, I would not call this a book on bidding. The first book I bought after returning to bridge after a 27 year layoff. Somewhat in the style of Socrates, I think
Authors you cannot go wrong with, but many of their works are not for beginners Apologies to the many fine authors (including authors of works not in English) that I have omitted. I can only state that I will always look at materials written by any of the following: Terence Reese, Mike Lawrence, Hugh Kelsey, Marty Bergen, Jeff Rubens (weak notrumps!), Marshall Miles, Victor Mollo, Edgar Kaplan, Eddie Kantar, William S. Root, Al Roth, and undoubtably many others. As you improve in bridge, you will find out who these other authors are (Klinger, Zia, Kokish, Stewart, etc. the list is soo long!)
Bidding Ha! No way am I going to recommend anything specific re systems or conventions! Even for so-called Standard American! (although I do have some preferences). Choose whatever you like and or comfortable with, with the knowledge that many will disagree with you (recommendation: do NOT argue about bidding systems, bidding conventions, or bidding agreements; just choose something and remember it! and change when you find sometime that is better for YOU!).

I will add entries to the above list from players who have no financial interest in the sale of a recommended book, who have the book in their library (and have carefully read it from cover to cover at least once!), and who can recommend without reservation a particular book for the advancing beginner

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