A majority of the original reviews were submitted by Charles Bahl and Robert Waters...Thanks!!!
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Game: Rook (Parker Brothers)
Submitted By: Charles Bahl (The Quake Coast Game Club, San Jose, CA)
Rook has been in print since 1906, making it among the oldest proprietary games in existence. It was originally invented by George Parker, the founder of Parker Brothers, as a card game for people whose religious scruples did not allow them to play with regular decks because they contained face cards. Although even now Rook has a dedicated following, especially in certain geographical areas of the United States, it is a game, I believe, that deserves to be better known. Rook is a great trick-taking game of far less complexity than Contract Bridge, and one that can be easily embraced by card players who love other simpler trick-taking games such as Hearts or Spades. The problem with Rook is that without a set of bidding and card-play guidelines it is difficult to play the game intelligently and consistently. Longtime players, of course, have devised their own bidding/play rules of thumb which get passed along in a kind of oral tradition (and now across the internet), but Rook calls out for a Charles Goren of its own.
This problem has been at least partially solved by the publication of Deluxe Rook by Winning Moves (under license from Hasbro). This edition includes not only the standard Rook deck and a (rather cheesy) set of score sheets, it also contains "Rook in a Book"--an 80-page guide to the game, written by Phil Orbanes. Approximately one half of the book contains rules for the many games playable with a Rook deck. The other half contains bidding/card-play guidelines for two of the most popular Rook games: "Kentucky Discard" (the official tournament game) and "Partnership Rook". In general, although I would have liked even more material, "Rook in a Book" provides the invaluable information you need to get you playing an intelligent game of Rook with a minimum of study. If you are new to Rook or somebody who would like to know how to play the game better, Deluxe Rook is definitely the edition of the game you should purchase.