When Anthony Holden was the only British player in the 1988 world poker championships in Las Vegas - with which his classic poker book, BIG DEAL, begins - there were 167 entrants. Last year there were 2,500; this July, when he plays in it again, they are expecting 8,000. Such is the recent expansion of poker, thanks to TV and the internet, that poker has recently become very big business. The biggest online poker site, PartyPoker.com, is making 500 a minute - and about to float on the stock market, after barely five years in business, at a value of some 5.5 billion. What qualities do you need to play poker well? How do you know when to bet, raise or fold? When to bluff? What's the difference between casino poker and online poker? Where to buy chips? Which online site to choose - and how much to risk? Anthony Holden, the game's finest writer, will answer all these questions and more, adding a brief history of the game and anecdotes about its great players, how it recently got so popular, and a glossary of useful poker terms - as well as advice on the percentage chances of winning a hand, the subtleties of 'position', the difference between pot-limit and no-limit poker, and so on. Aimed at those wishing to play Texas Hold'em, the poker game played on TV and in the world championships, Holden's manual will be the definitive starter's guide.