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Is this a great country or what?

You can bet on the turn of the card or a roll of the dice, but also on the NFL, the NCAA, and which Olsen twin marries first. We bet $80 billion a year, the amount growing wildly as more and more people gain access to this huge American wheel of fortune. No longer quarantined in Las Vegas, gambling has become as local and convenient as our neighborhood cineplex. If there's not a casino around the corner, there's one on your laptop computer.

In Jackpot Nation, Richard Hoffer takes us on a headlong tour, alternately horrifying and hilarious, across our landscape of luck. Whether he's trying to win a side of bacon in a Minnesota bar, hustling a paper sack filled with $100,000 in cash across Las Vegas parking lots, poring over expansion plans with a tribal chief in California, or visiting the New York prison cell of a retired bus salesman with a poor understanding of three-game parlays, Hoffer explores with wit and heart our national inclination—a cultural predisposition, even—to take a chance.

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