Chancing It, is a gripping read, which centres on 16 year old Steve, and the roller-coaster ride he and his family take when he becomes convinced that he has a “hotline to chance”.
"When Martin spoke afresh, he sounded like someone Steve had heard from the doorway of the bookmaker's. 'Go on then: heads ...'"
And so a matter of some consequence is settled on the toss of a coin. For Steve, gambling on the outcome of a cricket match, having a flutter on the horses, trying his luck on scratch cards, even playing virtual roulette, are nothing daunting. But then Steve is only sixteen years old, and doesn't have anything much to lose. For his stepfather Martin, who has mortgaged the roof over the family's head to underwrite his latest business enterprise, the stakes are considerably higher, however ...
Chancing It is set in a northern city undergoing radical change, a region of light industry and heavy betting. Its all-too-human characters move to the music of their speech and of their compulsions, while being convinced, some of them, that what they move to is a music altogether different, and altogether more mysterious.
“This is an admirable piece of writing. Yorke writes beautifully, and his sense of place – of a Yorkshire town given over to light industry and games of chance – is completely convincing. The characters, especially the hero, Steve, are brilliantly drawn.” – George Melly
Matthew Yorke was born in London in 1958 and now works in Leeds as an engineer. He is author of one previous novel, The March Fence, for which he won the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize, and editor of Surviving: The Uncollected Works of Henry Green.