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Tony Valentine is an expert at spotting cheats. He’s tossed them out of gambling casinos from Atlantic City to Las Vegas and Monaco. But though Tony has never met a scam he couldn’t crack, his son and partner, Gerry, has just walked into one with a body count.What started with a conman’s deathbed confession turns into a deadly Las Vegas grudge match during the world’s biggest poker tournament. While Gerry and his shady friends tangle with the Vegas mob, Tony enlists the aid of an aging grifter who’s fleecing suckers with a dazzling array of improbable betting stunts. Tony’s been hired to save the tournament (and stop a blind player who’s out to heist it), while Gerry’s just trying to stay alive–now that murder is in the cards.Featuring insider tips for catching poker cheats, as well as a glossary of card hustler terms!From the Paperback edition.read more
The usual detective literary devices are here and more. Swain emphasizes the psychological aspects of a father son detective team while hunting cheaters and worse in Poker Tournament obsessed Las Vegas. The plot is not credible but the narrative uses the plot to teach us about different kinds of cheating techniques used in a many different gambling settings.read more
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Gambling expert, casino consultant and retired cop Tony Valentine is back, along with his grifter-made-good son, Gerry, in the satisfying sixth installment of Swain's cards-and-cons thriller series (after Mr. Lucky). Gerry's lifelong friend Jack Donovan tells Gerry he's concocted an undetectable scheme that "can beat any poker player in the world," but dies before he can let Gerry in on it. Though ruled a suicide, Gerry is convinced Jack was murdered. Gerry's investigation leads him and his reluctant father to the World Poker Showdown in Las Vegas, where they encounter tournament darling Skip DeMarco, the legally blind nephew of a notorious mobster. Every expert Tony and Gerry speak with thinks Skip is cheating, but no one can prove it-making the Valentine boys wonder to whom Jack may have told his secret before he died. As always, Swain makes his encyclopedic mastery of gambling lore and technique look easy, and he handles Gerry and Tony's turbulent relationship with thought and humor, giving weight to the parallel dynamic between Skip and his Mafia uncle. Though many of the other supporting characters are forgettable, Swain's knowledge of the con, and of his leads, make this novel a pleasure. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved