Easy Money

Jamie Reid, Author Walker & Company $17.95 (305p) ISBN 978-0-8027-0999-8
Lex Parlane, Glasgow bookmaker extraordinaire, is on top of the world. He has swindled and shoved his way to the pinnacle of the gambling business in Scotland, and now he is ready to invade the fatter pastures of the English southern circuit. But he has enemies. Of these, the most powerful is the senior steward of the Jockey Club, which governs British racing. On the other hand, Parlane has managed to enroll the senior steward's son, a compulsive gambler, among his hangers-on. Through this connection Parlane expects to guarantee his English venture. But it doesn't quite work out that way. Devotees of Dick Francis, who can be credited with inventing the British racing scene for the reading public, will be startled by this powerful tour de force. In the Francis version, the racing milieu is basically benign although sometimes threatened by crooksusually outsiders. Reid's view is altogether darker. As seen here, the gross amounts of money involved and the enfeebling of the governing classes are ruining the sport, and Reid's evocation of this scene is dynamite. (October 12)
Reviewed on: 09/30/1987
Release date: 10/01/1987
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