The perils of a sex party

Gstaad I cross-country ski the old-fashioned way, not skating but on machine-made narrow tracks. It is known to be the best exercise in the world. Both upper and lower body get the maximum workout as one churns along a beautiful course in Lauenen, a tiny nearby village that looks like Gstaad did 60 years ago. I used to bring my children to the lake here during the summer, warning them time and again about a horrible monster that lived underwater and specialised in grabbing little kids. They screamed and screamed in terror until they got a bit older, told me to stop talking nonsense and swam to their heart’s content.

Keeping poker-faced is no use – it’s the hands that give the game away

This is not a rip-roaring, gonzo gambling adventure. By page 66 this cautious, thoughtful author has still never played a hand of poker in her life. She has read, re-read, dissected and annotated poker textbooks. She has scribbled notes while trying to keep up with her power-walking mentor, the poker legend Erik Seidel, as he tells her she’ll need to develop the ability to be reckless. This is a swot’s progress, a fish-out-of-water experiment. It’s hard to imagine her taking on, say, Devilfish in Vegas. As she finally joins a charity tournament on page 115, I’ll admit to thinking, this had better go somewhere. And it does. Within 18 months