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A Man for All Markets

From Las Vegas to Wall Street, How I Beat the Dealer and the Market
Narrated by: Edward O. Thorp
Length: 16 hrs and 30 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (43 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

The incredible true story of the card-counting mathematics professor who taught the world how to beat the dealer and, as the first of the great quantitative investors, ushered in a revolution on Wall Street. 

A child of the Great Depression, legendary mathematician Edward O. Thorp invented card counting, proving the seemingly impossible: that you could beat the dealer at the blackjack table. As a result he launched a gambling renaissance. His remarkable success - and mathematically unassailable method - caused such an uproar that casinos altered the rules of the game to thwart him and the legions he inspired. They barred him from their premises, even put his life in jeopardy. Nonetheless, gambling was forever changed. 

Thereafter, Thorp shifted his sights to "the biggest casino in the world": Wall Street. Devising and then deploying mathematical formulas to beat the market, Thorp ushered in the era of quantitative finance we live in today. Along the way, the so-called godfather of the quants played bridge with Warren Buffett, crossed swords with a young Rudy Giuliani, detected the Bernie Madoff scheme, and, to beat the game of roulette, invented, with Claude Shannon, the world's first wearable computer. 

Here, for the first time, Thorp tells the story of what he did, how he did it, his passions and motivations, and the curiosity that has always driven him to disregard conventional wisdom and devise game-changing solutions to seemingly insoluble problems. An intellectual thrill ride, replete with practical wisdom that can guide us all in uncertain financial waters, A Man for All Markets is an instant classic - a book that challenges its readers to think logically about a seemingly irrational world.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio.

©2017 Edward O. Thorp (P)2017 Random House Audio

What the critics say

"An amazing book by a true icon...Edward O. Thorp launched revolutions in Vegas and on Wall Street by turning math into magic, and here he weaves his own life lessons into a page-turner as hot as a deck full of aces. Loved it!" (Ben Mezrich, New York Times best-selling author of Bringing Down the House and The Accidental Billionaires)
"Whether you are an aspiring professional player, a casual gambler, or an occasional visitor to Las Vegas, you can feel the impact of Edward O. Thorp's intellect on that desert city. In 1962, Thorp published the classic book Beat the Dealer. The text was based on Thorp's original research that stemmed from his curiosity about the game of 21 and was billed as a how-to book for the layperson to beat the casinos at blackjack. Simply stated, it changed everything. A Man for All Markets chronicles Thorp's personal journey in navigating the unexpected and sometimes dangerous obstacles that come along with challenging the status quo of a wealthy corporate adversary." (Nicholas G. Colon, professional advantage gambler and managing director, Alea Consulting Group)
"What a CV! Figure out how to win at blackjack using card counting? Check. Build the world's first wearable computer? Check. Find the formula for valuing financial options but use it to make money rather than win a Nobel Prize? Check. This book is in part the gripping story of how one man's genius and dedication has solved so many problems in diverse fields. But more important, it's a fascinating insight into the thought processes of someone with little interest in fame, who has mostly stayed under the radar, yet who has followed his inquisitive mind wherever it has led him, and reaped the resulting rewards. There is nothing more important than knowing how to think clearly. Read this book and learn from a master." (Paul Wilmott, founder, Wilmott magazine)

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Best of the 50+ financial books I've read!

I've listen to this audiobook multiple times, it remains the best book I have consumed ever.
Ed thorp pionnered and discovered what have made the richest Quants hedge funds today, he reveals all of it in his book. The book is really well explained from bottom up, but suits to more intermediate to advanced investors with interest in trading options or warrants back in the his days.
It starts with his story beating the Vegas casinos, then go on how he started a hedge fund and delivered amazing returns. This book is entertaining, educational and gets you reflect a lot about the financial world of today.
The Audio is great, his voice won't make you fall asleep.
Looking forward from more from this Author.

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First half is interesting rest is pretty dull

I liked the first bit about his upbringing and his time studying the casino. When he got to the investing bit, which is why I got the book, their were some useful bits of information but for me majority of it seemed common sense and lacking excitement.

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This is a great read!

I ended up purchasing the physical book, because I believe the content is priceless! I highly reccomend.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2017-05-13

Lots of information.

Have listened to many money books that miss what this book brings. Will listen several more times thru to gain a more complete trading strategy. Regards, Studabaker

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Oleksiy Volovik
  • 2017-05-08

A life of a genius

What made the experience of listening to A Man for All Markets the most enjoyable?

Personally I enjoyed the story because I relate to the author and his views on how to live a fulfilling life. From his youth he has been educating himself in science and math, improving himself, understanding how the world works. This man did not limit himself to one ambition or one career or one goal. He learned how science explains the physical world around us, how mathematical patters can predict all kinds of scenarios that seem random to most of us. I added Edward Thorp to my list of successful, rich geeks like Howard Hughes, Elon Musk, and Bill Gates. His story is an inspiration.

What did you like best about this story?

The author's intelligent approach to success.

Have you listened to any of Edward O. Thorp’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

After listening to this book I wanted to learn more about this genius that I never heard of before. I listed to some of his interviews.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

The fist half yes, I wanted to keep listening and enjoyed every bit of it. The second part dealing with finance takes more time to digest some times so it's better to pause otherwise a lot of good information just blends and mixes together and gets forgotten.

Any additional comments?

This book makes you want to be smart and successful. Even though the author is a born genius, he provides a lesson that education and ambition go hand in hand on the road to success. You have to improve yourself in order to get what you want in life.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

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  • Glenn Samia
  • 2017-02-03

Einstein

I believe he will go down in history with Einstein and Franklin and Buffett. Mr. Thorp please accept my humble gratitude for all that you shared. You are so generous. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It's long. I'd like to listen to it again. I highly recommend this book if you are and investor or a trader. I especially recommend this book if you are a quant.

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

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  • Rafael Veras
  • 2017-05-09

Great book and narration

Easy to listen. I like Thorp's pace, well articulated and somewhat slow. It's just great to hear straight from the man who lived such an exciting life journey. The book is what you would expect: casinos, markets, math, academia. Great content.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Michael Lowe
  • 2017-03-06

Many sound lessons

Many good lessons can be learned from Thorp's interesting career and family.

Although he's a "science" oriented thinker, his Warren Buffet hero worship is a little ridiculous. He tells the usual and mostly accurate 2008 crisis etiology. He criticizes those who caused the crisis and received direct government bailout money. But he conveniently omits Warren Buffet's role with AIG which received the largest bailout of them all. If AIG hadn't received the TBTF money, Buffet's current reputation as a wise/prudent investor wouldn't be as described in this book.

Other than that, it's a good read.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 2017-12-06

my favorite

out of 52 audible books this year I listened to, this is up there as candidate for my favorite

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Marink
  • 2017-03-14

An amazing life, an excellent book

This book reminded me of the content found in My Life as a Quant by Emmanuel Derman. It is original and authentic. Thorp's humility and curiosity have provoded the world through this book with a great course on how to live a good, healthy and rich life. Listened to it in 5 days.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Peter.Prajin
  • 2017-02-26

fascinating... truely a man of his time.

what an incredible and unique vision of the world , directed purpose but always on eye on what truely has worth in the world

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Andrew Frank
  • 2017-02-02

A well read biography

Great book. Enjoyed all the detail in this biography and options on the efficient market.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • Fritalci
  • 2018-11-13

I hoped for better

I bought this book because of the introduction by Nassim Taleb and could not be more disappointed. While the topics themselves are interesting and the author lived through fascinating times, the writing was so dry and devoid of color and richness that I often found myself bored. He also went into too much detail about the trivial while glossing over the richest opportunities. The narration was awful, with a staccato worse than William Shatner.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful