- STAFF PICKS
- GIFTS + GIFT CARDS
- SELL BOOKS
- FIND A STORE
This item may be
Check for Availability
Lay the Favorite: A Memoir of Gamblingby Beth Raymer
Synopses & Reviews
Betting on the come in her wickedly funny debut, Beth Raymer's prose is like a virgin in a sandy bikini festooned with inotes. From Vegas to Rio, from the boxing ring to the stripper's pole, she rubs shoulders and other things with the sickest crew of action junkies since Roulettenburg. Her ear for sports bettors' patois, for the ins and outs of pleasure, self-pleasure, and getting the best of it, makes Lay the Favorite a kaleidoscope of high-test debauchery. -James McManus, author of Positively Fifth Street
Strange as hell, wildly affectionate and very, very funny. It is a world filled with scoundrels, thieves, and gamblers. It is a world we all recognize, where everyone is looking to somehow come out on top while doing what they love. The book is wise and has a relish for life that is a treat. -Stephen Frears
Beth Raymer possesses one of the most original voices I've encountered in years of teaching, reading, and reviewing young writers. And she puts that voice to ideal use in depicting the demimonde of sports gambling, the place where she finds an unlikely but uncanny surrogate family. Lay the Favorite is a coming-of-age saga like no other you're ever likely to read. -Samuel G. Freedman, author of Letters to a Young Journalist
Lay the Favorite reads more like a novel than a memoir. The rich characters are drawn in depth, yet simply and honestly.--Wall Street Journal
A] very funny and smart book.--Robert Siegel, NPR/All Things Considered
Seduced by her stories, we long for this strange, sleazy and alluring landscape, even as the stakes get higher and Raymer's search for 'the best of it' turns into a worst-case scenario. With a film adaptation in the works, it's a safe bet that Raymer's memoir will find a wide audience. In fact, her engaging voice makes her a shoe-in for a sequel. I'm setting the odds at 3 to 1.--Los Angeles Times
Raymer's crackling, hilarious memoir ricochets through the gambling underwold in Las Vegas, and is peopled with all manner of lovable wack-jobs, none of whom is quite as wacky--or lovable--as Raymer herself.--Marie Claire
Candid, smart, funny, wild and crazy.--Elle, Top 10 Summer Books for 2010
It's hard not to like the breezy, ingenuous voice of this plucky protagonist who proves she's game for any kind of new experience.--Publishers Weekly
From the Hardcover edition.
Documents the author's high-stakes adventures in the world of sports betting, tracing how she arrived in Vegas hoping to become a cocktail waitress only to be seduced by the adrenaline-fueled gambler's lifestyle and its surfeit of illusory glamour and nefarious characters.
Beth Raymer has an MFA from Columbia University. In 2007 she was awarded a Fulbright scholarship. She lives in New York City.
What Our Readers Are Saying