Postflop Volume 1 – Book Review
Postflop play is arguably the most difficult aspect of poker. It is many times more complex than preflop play.
It is also the area of poker where you can make the biggest gains. If you improve your postflop play and decisions, you will gain a substantial edge on your opponents and you will be able to make complex decisions much more confidently.
Interestingly, there are very few poker books specifically on postflop strategy and none that present this subject in a complete and in-depth guide.
If you're struggling a lot with your postflop play and if you're often unsure how to proceed in difficult spots, this book will be of great help to you.
It is far from easy to tackle a topic as vast and complex as postflop play, while still keeping everything concise and understandable. But this book manages to do just that. It breaks down postflop play comprehensibly and logically, and it will give you the tools you need to get a thorough understanding of postflop poker.
Making Sense of the Postflop Universe
The book starts off with a "map of the postflop universe" that covers 12 different postflop dimensions. These dimensions are essentially the factors that should govern your preflop and postflop decision-making.
Becoming familiar with these 12 dimensions allows you to structure your thought processes much more comprehensively and effectively. It is the first step to making more sense of the complicated decision-making that is involved in postflop play.
The author then proceeds by listing the "6 postflop decision scenarios". These scenarios are the postflop situations you can find yourself in based on who the preflop aggressor is, what your relative position in the hand is and the action that is facing you.
The postflop dimensions and postflop decision scenarios are great tools you can use to get a better grip on your postflop decision-making.
Oftentimes when you're facing a difficult postflop decision, there are a lot of different and conflicting ideas running through your head making it very hard to come up with an appropriate solution. The postflop dimensions and decision scenarios outlined in this book bring order to this chaos. They give you a much more structured approach and help you to come up with better and more informed postflop decisions.
Structured theory and ideas about postflop decision-making are incredibly useful. But as poker players, we obviously also want to know how to apply this theory to practice.
This is done in the remainder of the book where hand examples give you specific guidance on how to proceed postflop. Hand examples are broken down according to hand strength. This book, Volume 1, deals predominantly with how to play pocket pairs, whilst Volume 2 focuses on non-pocket pairs.
The hand examples are set against the background of the postflop dimensions and postflop decision scenarios presented in the first part of the book. Each hand is then further broken down into separate sections pertaining to specific postflop situations.
For example, the book discusses extensively how to play pocket Aces with different effective stack sizes. But other scenarios are looked at as well. For example, how to play pocket Jacks is being discussed along the lines of playing the hand as the preflop defender or as the preflop aggressor. Looking at these hands from different angles is very useful and gives you a complete outlook on postflop play for pocket pairs.
Apart from preflop hand strength, strategy according to postflop hand strength is also covered. In the Part on playing mid/low pairs, for example, the book discusses postflop strategy for different situations, like how to play a set on a dry board, on a wet board, how to proceed if you flop a full house with your pocket pair etc.
What I like most about this book is the thoroughness with which it discusses postflop play. If you look at the numbers, postflop poker is incredibly complex. By the river, there are no less than 2,118,760 possible boards that go with one hand! Despite the magnitude of the subject, Postflop - The Edge You Need In No Limit Hold'Em does a fantastic job at presenting postflop strategies in a straightforward and comprehensible fashion.
Apart from teaching you the finer aspects of postflop poker, this book is also very useful as a source of reference for players. For example, if you played a tough hand with Ace-King during a session and you're unsure whether you made the right decisions postflop, you can simply go back to the section on playing Ace-King to check whether your approach to the hand was correct or not.
It is difficult to make sense of poker's incredibly complex postflop universe, but that is exactly what this book does. Postflop is a great book for every player wishing to improve his postflop play and increase his edge in the game.
Where to buy
Both volumes of Postflop are available on Amazon:
If you'd like to know more about the author, check out his site PostflopPoker.com.