The ONLY Poker Beginner Books You Need [2024]

Poker beginner books
People often ask me what are the best poker beginner books. And believe me, I get it. There are so many poker books out there these days, it can be hard to know where to even start!

As a 10+ year poker pro myself I have read a few poker books over the years. So I have a pretty good idea of which poker books are best for beginners.

I also know which poker books helped me the most in those crucial early stages of my poker career when I was still trying to figure it all out.

In this article I am going to list my top 5 best poker beginner books.

1. Massive Profit at the Micros - Nathan "BlackRain79" Williams

The best poker beginner book in my opinion is Massive Profit at the Micros which was written by me. Now why would I be so bold as to put my own book in the #1 position?

Because unlike every other poker author I actually have some of the best results in online poker history at the stakes that poker beginners are playing (NL2 and NL5 online in particular).

The other reason why I put Massive Profit at the Micros as the best poker beginner book is really simple.

It is the only poker beginner book that is 100% free!

Best Poker Beginner Books Massive Profit at the Micros

People actually tell me all the time that I should be charging money for this poker book. Why do I give away all this high level poker strategy for free?

And while I agree with them in theory, my #1 goal on this website has always been to help people start winning consistently in small stakes poker games.

Often people who are just starting out in poker do not have a lot of money to invest in expensive poker training materials and strategy books.

So that is why I decided to write Massive Profit at the Micros, giving away my complete poker beginner strategy, and then simply give it away for free.

The other strength of this poker beginner book is that it is only about 50 pages long. This means that you will be able to study it, and start using the strategies at the poker table, in a hour at the most.

Massive Profit at the Micros provides you with a complete step by step guide (preflop to the river) for what to do in every situation in low stakes poker games.

These are the poker strategies that I personally use to make $1000+ per month playing low stakes poker games.

Enter your details below and I will send a copy of Massive Profit at the Micros to your email right now.

2. Crushing the Microstakes - Nathan "BlackRain79" Williams

The next best poker beginner book on the list is Crushing the Microstakes which was also written by me. Now why does this book also deserve to be so high on the list?

The reason why is because this is the most popular poker book ever written for the lowest stakes games (NL2 and NL5 online or $1/$2 if you play live).

Why is this book so popular? Because, as mentioned, as the author I have some of the best results in online poker history at these stakes (my results are listed on page 1 of the book).

Best Poker Beginner Books Crushing the Microstakes

This immediately sets this beginner poker book apart from every other one out there. Crushing the Microstakes isn't about "theories" or "formulas" like so many other poker books.

Crushing the Microstakes is instead based on the proven poker strategies that I personally created to make over 6 figures in just these games alone during my poker pro career.

Crushing the Microstakes is a laser focused 250 page guide which teaches you how to absolutely crush 6-max, Zoom and full ring NL2 and NL5 games online or $1/$2 if you play live.

And it is this extremely narrow focus that has allowed so many people now to read it and then subsequently improve their results dramatically in these poker games.

Crushing the Microstakes shows you step by step how I created some of the highest profits in online poker history in these low stakes poker games with countless poker hand examples to guide you through as well.

There is also an optional video course which goes along with the book where you can actually just watch me play live and explain every decision I make (6+ hours of live play, Zoom, 6-max and full ring).

Best poker beginner book

This allows you to essentially "look over my shoulder" as I show you exactly how I created some of the highest recorded winnings in online poker history in 6max, Zoom and full ring.

Crushing the Microstakes also comes bundled with my extremely popular FREE bonuses:
  • The Starting Hand “Cheat Sheets”
  • The Ultimate Zoom Poker Strategy Guide
  • Lifetime Access to my Private Poker Forum (I personally help you with your poker hands)

You can grab your copy of Crushing the Microstakes (and the video course) right here.

Get 25% OFF Use Code: CTM25

3. The Theory of Poker - David Sklansky

The Theory of Poker was originally published in 1989 (although it has gone through many different editions since then), and therefore some people will dismiss it immediately as being too outdated.

And I get that believe me.

This is especially since it was originally written well before online poker even existed! However, there is a reason why this is the most popular poker book ever written.

Put simply, The Theory of Poker by David Sklansky teaches you how to think like a winning poker player. This is the very first poker book that I ever read and I still recommend it for beginners to this day.

Best Poker Beginner Books The Theory of Poker

Now to be honest, most of the book isn't even about No Limit Hold'em. It's actually about Limit Hold'em instead.

However, Sklansky excels at teaching the basic fundamentals of winning poker which applies to all poker game types. This poker beginner book for example will finally make you understand the true power of aggression in poker.

The Theory of Poker also includes the very famous "fundamental theorem of poker", which once you fully understand it, is an absolute game changing principle for playing winning poker.

Reading The Theory of Poker was absolutely critical for my early stage development as a professional poker player.

So for this reason, I still recommend this 30 year old book to poker beginners. In fact, every poker player should read this book and absorb the massive amounts of poker wisdom contained within it.

4. The Mental Game of Poker - Jared Tendler

People vastly, vastly under-estimate the mental side of the game of poker. I have been saying this for so many years now.

In fact, in my opinion the mental side of the game of poker is the number #1 thing that separates low stakes poker players from high stakes players and amateurs from the pros.

Specifically I am talking about tilt, but also work ethic, discipline and the ability to handle the extreme emotional swings that come along with playing poker at a high level.

And the absolute best poker book ever written for the mental side of the game is The Mental Game of Poker by Jared Tendler.

Best Poker Beginner Books The Mental Game of Poker

As a quick aside, I respect Jared's understanding of the mental side of the game so much that I have actually even hired him in the past to coach me! I have also interviewed Jared before right here on my blog.

I think the primary reason why Jared's ability to teach the mental side of poker is so high is because he is actually not even a poker player himself.

However, he does have a Master's degree in Psychology and has worked with many of the best poker players (and golfers) in the world to help them with their confidence, tilt control, focus and so on.

Having read this book multiple times, and worked with Jared personally myself to improve my own poker mental game, I always recommend this book as required reading for any poker beginner.

5. Treat Your Poker Like a Business - Dusty Schmidt

The final book on this list of the best poker beginner books was written by the legendary online poker player and original hardcore grinder, Dusty "Leatherass" Schmidt.

Dusty Schmidt has made millions of dollars at the poker tables specifically in mid and high stakes games online. And quite frankly, he was my poker hero when I was first learning how to win at poker.

I would study his poker training videos over and over. I learned how to think about this game on a much higher level primarily by studying his game inside and out.

So when Dusty released Treat Your Poker Like a Business it was literally my bible for learning how to think about this game on a world class level.

Best Poker Beginner Books Treat Your Poker Like a Business

As the title suggests, Treat Your Poker Like Business teaches you how to manage your poker career as a professional both from the financial and the emotional side of the game.

Dusty teaches you about the work ethic necessary to make it over the long run in this crazy game. He also talks about how he manages his emotions after winning (or losing) massive amounts of money every single day.

The bottom line is if you want to learn how to rise above all the other amateurs out there and really think about the game like an elite level poker pro does, then you need to read this book.

Final Thoughts

There are so many poker beginner books out there these days. It can be difficult to even know where to begin!

So this is why I recommend only a handful of poker beginner books that are actually based on proven results at the poker tables.

You always want to be learning from the very best. So that is why for poker beginners I always recommend my own poker beginner books first:

I have some of the best proven results in online poker history in these low stakes games. And this is why no other poker books can compete with them.

I also recommend David Sklansky's The Theory of Poker because it is the most fundamentally sound poker book ever written. This is your bible for learning the basics of winning poker theory.

Jared Tendler's The Mental Game of Poker is the best poker book ever written for the mental side of the game. This is absolutely required reading for all poker beginners in my opinion.

Treat Your Poker Like a Business by Dusty Schmidt brings it all together for you, teaching you how to think about this game like a world class pro does.

Lastly, if you want to learn how to start consistently making $1000 per month in low stakes poker games, make sure you grab a copy of my free poker cheat sheet.

Let me know in the comments below what you think the best poker beginner books are.

Best Poker Beginner Books


  1. I've just finished mental game of poker. It taught me a lesson not to be a mental game fish by not changing a winning simply because you have losing sessions. If you can only get a couple of pearls from these books then they will be worth it

    1. Hey cs, I agree that's a huge part of winning poker. Sticking with the game-plan no matter if you are winning or losing!

  2. Nice list! I remember reading your free book Massive Profit at the Micros when it first came out. Definitely changed my whole perspective and taught me how to finally starting winning!

    1. Awesome TJ glad it helped you! :)