cover image Drover and the Zebras: The New Drover Novel

Drover and the Zebras: The New Drover Novel

Bill Granger / Author William Morrow & Company $20 (252p) ISBN

The second adventure of former sportswriter Jimmy Drover, now a scout for Las Vegas bookies, disappoints in both style and content. Back home in Chicago, Drover runs into an old flame whose brother is now head basketball coach at their alma mater, St. Mary's (a thinly disguised Notre Dame). St. Mary's looks like a Final Four team for the first time in its history, but the coach is the subject of an NCAA investigation into recruiting and point-shaving accusations, which is spurred on by the apparent suicide of a referee. Drover looks into things and learns that the dead official did regular business with a bookie; teaming up with a tough cop, he confronts an FBI agent with more interest in his own agenda than in serving justice. None of this endears Drover to St. Mary's' look-the-other-way president and its fast-track athletic director. Few surprises and little motion accompany the truth's slow coming to light, the predictable cynical comments on big-time college athletics and the world-weary one-note dialogue. A lackluster performance by the prolific and usually sharp Granger. (June)