Posts Tagged ‘The Social Network’

Ben Mezrich defends Angle he took in New Book “Straight Flush”

Friday, June 14th, 2013

One of the biggest stories in the poker world over the past few weeks has been Ben Mezrich’s new book Straight Flush. Mezrich, who’s famous for writing The Accidental Billionaires and Bringing Down the House, took an in-depth look at the rise and fall of Absolute Poker in his latest work. But many poker players don’t believe that Straight Flush does an adequate job of explaining the corruption involved with Absolute.

The famed author largely disagrees with this notion and defended the angle he took with his poker book in an interview with When asked about TwoPlusTwo forum members bashing how he allegedly skipped over a major cheating incident at Absolute Poker, Mezrich explained the situation with the following:

There’s a group of people who feel that Scott (Tom) is very evil and that the founders of AP are horrible and cheats. And I think the book is a works-in-all tale, although they would disagree. But I think the cheating scandal’s in there, there’s no cover-up, there’s no defense. It tells the story in their words. It’s certainly from their point of view. But I think the rise and fall of AP is told well in this story, and certainly what happened with the UIGEA and what happened with the industry, which I think is what’s important in this story.

Ben Mezrich went on to show some sympathy for those who’d lost money due to the scandal and said that he gets why the book is controversial. However, writing a book completely about the cheating scandal isn’t what he wanted to do. Instead, Mezrich wanted to focus on the rise and fall of Absolute Poker along with how unjust the UIGEA was.

The author’s recent interview with CalvinAyre is still unlikely to win Mezrich any points with hardcore poker enthusiasts, some of whom lost money when Absolute went offline following Black Friday. However, he does do a good job of defending his position, which has always been writing entertaining, glamorized stories about young college students who build financial empires, only to experience struggles and controversy along the way.

This formula has helped Mezrich’s books be spun into two huge movies in The Social Network (Accidental Billionaires) and 21 (Bringing Down the House). And as he contends in the CalvinAyre interview, it won’t be long before Straight Flush is turned into a major film.

Author Ben Mezrich to write Absolute Poker Book

Monday, August 20th, 2012

Ben Mezrich is a well known non-fiction author who has taken up a new project that focuses on the defunct Absolute Poker and its founders. As you may already know, Absolute was a fairly scandal-ridden poker site that went down after Black Friday along with millions of dollars in players’ money.

It’s still too early to see what angle the author will take with this story, but Mezrich has hinted at writing a great deal about those who started Absolute Poker – a group of University of Montana students. One of the hints Mezrich gave us was when he said, “They’re brilliant kids who built an empire in a way. And now they’re being persecuted because they did something to me that was very American.”

The only problem with this book idea as far as the poker world is concerned involves the large amount of negative feelings that most players have for Absolute Poker. Like we discussed before, Absolute Poker was responsible for losing millions of dollars in player deposits when they went offline. Furthermore, there was once a superuser scandal at Absolute that gave certain players the ability to see their opponents’ hole cards.

Ben Mezrich’s name may not be familiar to everybody, but the work he’s done should ring a few bells. He is widely recognized for his book “Bringing Down the House: The Inside Story of Six MIT Students Who Took Vegas for Millions,” which served as the basis for the movie 21.  Additionally, he wrote, “The Accidental Billionaires: The Founding of Facebook, A Take of Sex, Money, Genius, and Betrayal,” which spawned The Social Network.