WHY DO we gamble? The better question, according to SI senior writer Richard Hoffer, is why wouldn't we? Risk taking, he says, is ingrained in America's DNA, and in Jackpot Nation: Rambling and Gambling Across Our Landscape of Luck, Hoffer examines the breadth and depth of our gaming obsession. From $500 tables in Vegas to a Minnesota bar where winners walk off with a side of bacon, Hoffer takes readers on a richly researched ride through the $80 billion gambling subculture. This is no detached social history. A gambler himself, Hoffer writes eloquently about the highs and lows of the betting life.