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Sounding Drum

MARTIN, Larry Jay

7 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1575663686 / ISBN 13: 9781575663685
Published by Kensington Books, [New York], 1999
From Main Street Fine Books & Mss, ABAA (Galena, IL, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Small 4to. Black cloth spine and red paper over boards, pictorial dust jacket. 345pp. Very good/very good. Slightest bit of mild jacket edgewear; black remainder mark on bottom page edges. First edition -- tight and attractive -- and inscribed and signed by the author large and bold in blue marker on the half-title page: "Your Good Friend, / LJ Martin." Thriller involving a Native American who discovers in Manhattan "the written record of a land transfer between a colonial governor and a Native American tribe" and seeks to right an old wrong. "They stole Manhattan from his people," proclaims the jacket front panel. "Now he's going to even the score.". Bookseller Inventory # 30739

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Sounding Drum

Publisher: Kensington Books, [New York]

Publication Date: 1999

Binding: Hardcover

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title


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.

From Kirkus Reviews:

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.

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