Son of a Gambling Man: My Journey to the Governor’s Mansion from a Casino

Bob Miller, Author, Bill Clinton, Foreword by
Governor Bob Miller. St. Martin’s/Thomas Dunne, $26.99 (272p) ISBN 978-0-31259181-6
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Miller, Nevada’s longest-serving governor (1989 to 1999), opens this book by saying that it is not a typical autobiography. After a capable foreword by former President Bill Clinton, Miller writes lovingly, and without apology, about his father, a Chicago bookmaker, whose word was his bond. He counted mobsters as associates, leading to business opportunities in the preglitter Las Vegas era. The fledgling gambling mecca, Las Vegas, plays an important character here, as Miller’s father becomes deeply involved in the casino life, yet shields his son from it, instead urging him to take part in the American Dream. After a stint in the service and law school, Miller rises quickly from assistant district attorney to judge, entering public office and eventually becoming governor, where he boldly takes on the gaming industry and corrupt lawmakers. In addition to providing the basis for a revealing family memoir and a triumphant political document, Miller’s unique life is a testament to persistence, ambition, and respect for blood ties, including ties to his proud casino father. (Mar.)
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