271pp | Paperback | ISBN 978-1-894154-90-1
$13.95 $9.95 £6.95
A comprehensive, 3-week, day-by-day bridge course for the beginner by the bridge editor of The New York Times.
Alan Truscott (April 16, 1925 — September 4, 2005) was a bridge player, author and columnist. He wrote the daily bridge column for The New York Times for 41 years, from 1964 to 2005.
Truscott was born in Brixton, London, and showed early prowess at chess as well as bridge. He attended Whitgift School, and served in the Royal Navy towards the end of World War II. He studied at the University of Oxford from 1947, playing for the university at both chess and bridge. He was a member of the British team (along with Terence Reese and Boris Schapiro) that won a bronze medal at the European bridge championships in 1951, aged only 26. In 1958 he was a member of the British team that finished second, and in 1961 his team won the gold medal in the same event at Torquay. Truscott's team also finished third in the 1962 Bermuda Bowl held in New York City. He was also involved in the investigation of a cheating scandal at the Bermuda Bowl in Buenos Aires in 1965. A pair of British players (Reese and Schapiro) were accused of using their fingers to pass information about their cards by an American pair (B. Jay Becker and Dorothy Hayden). Truscott believed the British pair were guilty. They were subsequently adjudicated guilty by the World Bridge Federation authorities at the tournament in Buenos Aires. The British Bridge League (BBL) then convened its own inquiry, and several months later the BBL acquitted them. Truscott later published a book on the affair, entitled The Great Bridge Scandal. Reese published his own version of events in The Story of an Accusation. Truscott wrote 13 books on bridge, and was executive editor of the first three editions of The Official Encyclopedia of Bridge.
He had three children (Frances, Fraser and Philip) with his first wife Gloria, but they divorced in 1970. He married his second wife, Dorothy Hayden, an American mathematician and international bridge player who was one of the original accusers in the Buenos Aires affair, in 1972. He died at his holiday home in the Adirondacks.
"The student just learning the game will learn a lot from this book. Additionally, the writing in both is straightforward and compelling, making the task of learning the elements of this complex game a pleasure."
— Belleville Intelligencer
"An excellent beginner's guide. Full marks to the publisher for ensuring that the bidding methods were updated (in this new edition) rather than taking the easy route."
— The Bridge World
"Rarely do I get very excited about a book for newcomers to the game, but then I rarely have the pleasure of reading one as good as this. Indeed, if it is still eligible even though it is a reprint, I confidently predict that 'Bridge in 3 Weeks' will win the American Bridge Teachers Association's book of the year prize.
As you might expect from the title the book comes in 21 chapters. There is no rest on the Sabbath I am afraid! Each title deals with new aspects of bidding and play and, of course, the early chapters also cover matters of procedure. Each chapter ends with a quiz and a list of essential points to remember. The book concludes with a glossary and an index. If you really are a newcomer to the game, you will probably need to read each chapter two or three times in order for everything to sink in. It may also help if you have a pack of cards to hand. In a book of this nature, it is important that the writing is clear without being dictatorial and Truscott strikes this balance brilliantly. In his biography on the back cover, it makes no mention of his experience or qualifications as a bridge teacher. Perhaps he missed his calling.
I rarely mention a book's cover even once, and now I am going to mention it again. I cannot make up my mind which I like more: the pretty smiling face on the front or the very competitive price tag on the back. If I had to make an adverse comment about the book, I would be hard pressed to do so."
— Julian Pottage
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Can't recommend - it's not really updated for duplicate I bought this as an ebook download for a friend who wants to learn to play the duplicate version of bridge. The problem is the intro to the book says it's "updated" - but the updates are mostly footnotes that point to later add-on chapters. Modern duplicate bridge includes the Stayman 2 club bid asking a 1 NT opener for 4 card majors and the Jacoby transfer bids as a standard in bidding - this book covers responses to 1 NT openings without covering these - except for footnotes pointing to Chap 16 or where ever. Also, weak 2 opening bids are now standard - the old strong 2's are pretty much dead and buried - but not here, except in footnotes pointing to a later chapter. I don't see any point in learning a lot of "old" stuff and then having to re-learn to play with most modern players. There's more - but this should be enough.
Reviewer: Jeffrey Thompson Date: 2013-07-05