The Hustlers by Douglas Thompson
John Burke and Bobby McKew first met in Dublin but their paths were to cross again in London in the late 1950s, with fateful results. By this time John was running illegal gambling parties in Belgravia and Bobby was the lieutenant of a notorious crime boss. When gambling was legalized, clubs sprang up everywhere. And for those who shared Bobby's mindset ('I would never get into a game of chance unless I knew it was bent and I was on the winning end') there was money to be made. Finally able to tell their story and name their co-conspirators without fear of reprisals, John and Bobby describe the full details of a scam they called 'the big edge', an undetectable way to fix the hugely fashionable game of chemin de fer. As John says, 'It was psychologically and mathematically brilliant. Einstein would have been proud of it.' It was the ultimate con, and those involved made tens of millions of pounds. And they stole from everyone - government ministers, the rich and titled, movie moguls as well as the ordinary punter. Told through the eyes of two charming Irishmen, evoking London society in the late 1950s and 60s, with a fantastic cast of characters ranging from legendary safecracker Eddie Chapman and Great Train Robber Bruce Reynolds to Sam Spiegel, Ian Fleming and the Maharaja of Baroda, "The Hustlers" is a gripping account of one of the twentieth century's most outrageous scams.