In the wake of America’s obsession with Texas Hold ’Em comes the tale of Andy Beal, the Dallas banker and amateur numbers-theory whiz whose poker-playing exploits are chronicled by MICHAEL CRAIG in THE PROFESSOR, THE BANKER, AND THE SUICIDE KING: INSIDE THE RICHEST POKER GAME OF ALL TIME (Warner). In March 2001 the self-made billionaire headed to Vegas with a goal that seemed like lunacy—to play winner-take-all Hold ’Em against a tag team of the world’s top pros, with each player bringing a cool million to the table. Three years  later, Beal had pushed the stone-cold gamblers’ skills to the limit and the pot to an eye-popping $20 million. Craig’s access to the players provides  insight into the pressure-cooker atmosphere of a big-money card room. And stay tuned. Negotiations are under way to continue play with the stakes doubled.