Vil's Books

You can now read an on-line reproduction of many of Vil's books here on this site. Just click on whichever of the blue headings you are interested in. You will be invited to download attachments to your computer. Headings without links are works in progress.

From Vil's lessons in the 1990s. Learning the SIMPLE way. Some things have changed since then but the principles are still the same. Once you have learnt to play the SIMPLE way, you will easily be able to upgrade and adjust to any system or any way of playing that you and your partner prefer.

This book follows play in the lower grades of club level. In story form, it will give the reader interesting reading and an education in certain aspects of basic play. It is made up of the following parts:

  • Simple Stories: Chapters 1 to 6
  • One Night Stand: In three parts, one full session of bridge, 24 deals

Slam bidding at lower and more advanced levels of the game. Some simple suggestions for slam bidding and play.

21 play problems and suggested answers. Not all hands are simple to play, and not all require the same methods of play. A good variety of instructive declarer play problems. Try the play yourself and then see the suggested answers.

Play and defence in No Trumps. Seventeen chapters on No Trumps and various options for No Trump openings, play, and defence against No Trump bidding.

Starting with fairly basic defence, the chapters lead you through a number of stages to help you become a very good defender. The final chapters are an update on a number of treatments. A must for any pair
that wants to get good results on defence, not just in the bidding and declarer play. How to communicate with and understanding and cooperative partner.

An attempt at humour, for those who enjoy a bit of light banter and unusual hands. Much of this book may not be considered entirely “PC” these days but many reports have been received from people who have had a good laugh, some even recognising themselves in the characters spoken of by the author, Vil's “alter ego” Raimondo Von Impski. 28 Von Impski Stories from bridge club happenings.

Just click on where it says Vil Gravis's blog underneath any of Vil's articles on this site to get a list of his Weekly Reviews of recent play at club level. These have appeared every week on the X-Clubs web site and have covered the more basic aspects of play, Wednesday being the lowest grade of play at his home club of Hutt. This is not necessarily the case for every club that plays on Wednesday nights. Each week, one deal is reviewed, and a variety of topics are covered in the 70 or so Wednesday Reviews that are reproduced here.

Other books that will be available on this site in the near future:

A sequel to “Tips and Quips”, we are back in the lower grades. More tips for the beginner, how to improve their bridge and their results in the lower grades before progressing up the ranks.

Moving up in the grades to a higher level in 'mixed grade' play.

Following our younger up and coming players, in their quest to win the Bermuda Bowl. Wishful thinking? Maybe, but New Zealand was fourth in the world in the latest tournament, and we have some great talent in our younger generation. This book will follow our quest to develop new talent and help them win the ultimate prize.

Some of Vil's own ideas on bidding and play. The term Evil is a term attributed to a lady who played against Vil's version of weak opening two bids, which will be described in detail in this book, along with many examples from actual play, as well as other innovations such as the “Evil Double”, “Evil No Trumps”, “Evil Defence” and “Evil Signals”. You will just have to wait for these to appear in the near future on this site.

Please note: Vil's current book, “Tips and Quips” which has been produced in hard copy, is available ONLY in hard copy, and can be obtained for $30 (including postage) by emailing Vil at

All of the above books listed as links can be read free on this site, but a voluntary contribution will be very much appreciated, just a few dollars paid to the following account will help us keep going in our quest to provide information and help attract new players and improve the standard of bridge. Vil's Bank Account is 38-9004-0794849-00

Final Note: All, or some, of the above books could be available in hard copy. To make it worthwhile and economical, it will be necessary to have the numbers before printing of the hard copy books. If you would be interested in a hard copy book of any of the ones you have read here, please let Vil know by email and you will be kept in touch.