A gripping thriller delves into the high-stakes business of Indian reservation gambling casinos where Stephen Drum--known as Sounding Drum--must risk everything, including his life, to secretly establish a Native American reservation on Manhattan Island that will showcase the largest casino in the world.
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An awkwardly plotted cautionary tale that speculates, unsuccessfully, about what Native Americans, scheming businessmen, and Sicilian mobsters might do if a document turned up that gave a valuable patch of Manhattan real estate back to the Indians. Two clever premises jump-start Martins debut thriller. The first takes the form of a crusty piece of 17th-century parchment discovered in a crypt behind the basement walls of a Manhattan skyscraper. The second is the authors smart decision to give Native American origins to his hero, handsome but driven gambling industry analyst Stephen Drum; to his heroine, archaeologist Paula Fox; and to most of the supporting cast. Martin does a nice job of showing how different tribal customs, upbringings, and relationships with American ethnic groups shape the protagonists understanding of good and evil, as well as their thoughts about what to do with an ancient deed that, if authentic, might solve the financial problems of every Native American forever. But then, alas, he clutters up this strong material with a revenge melodrama involving loathsome industrialist Alex Dragonovich, who may have murdered Drums father during a drunken tussle on a Montana reservation, and with a star-crossed romance in which Stephen pines for Angela Giovanni, whose father a preposterously rich Mafia chieftain, would rather have her marry an Italian. Nor is the narrative enriched by Martins attempt to demonstrate that gambling on reservations just might give Native Americans the financial and political clout to take charge of their destinyif they can overcome petty rivalries, become more businesslike, and beat the casino moguls at their own game. Discursive flashbacks, gloating villains, and much table-talk in atmospheric Manhattan eateries fail to convince as Drum plans to transform Midtown into a reservation and open up Rockefeller Center as a casino. A double-zero. -- Copyright ©1999, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Publishers Weekly:
The chance discovery of a 400-year-old land grant by a colonial New York governor that ceded a chunk of Manhattan Island to the local Canarsee Indian tribes sparks the roller coaster plot of western writer Martin's new thriller. Steve ("Sounding") Drum is a Montana Salish Indian turned savvy Wall Street lawyer to whom archeologist Paula Fox secretly gives the document she has unearthed. When analysis proves the deed authentic, Drum finds the Canarsee heirs among the Schomac, a small landless tribe near the Finger Lakes area of New York State. Pooling the resources of local casino-owning tribes and calling for help from the Mafioso benefactor who put him through law school, Drum launches a shrewd plan to transform part of Rockefeller Center into the Schomac reservation. Drum's scheme is complicated by his unsanctioned romance with the Don's daughter, and by a mystery stalker intent on killing him. He's also distracted by his obsession to revenge his own father's murder. The outlandish premise and the plot's compelling twists and turns more than compensate for sappy dialogue in the romantic episodes, an extraneous side plot and a glut of ethnic similes. Readers will sympathize with the Native American underdogs all the way to the surprise ending. Author tour. (June) FYI: Martin will tour with his wife, romance novelist Kat Martin.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Book Description Kensington, 1999. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX1575663686
Book Description Kensington, 1999. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M1575663686
Book Description Kensington, 1999. hardcover. Book Condition: New. Author Signed Hardcover Book. 1999 NY: Kensington First edition, first printing, mint, new/unread, flawless dust jacket, signed by author. Each dust jacket is protected in an acid-free archival quality acetate cover. signed by author. Bookseller Inventory # MARSOUN01