Sin City

Sin City

4.5 2
by Harold Robbins

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From the New York Times bestselling author of The Predators

For more than five decades, bestselling author Harold Robbins has thrilled millions of readers with tales heavy in action, ruthless characters, international intrigue, and the sexiest people ever captured in print.

Now in Sin City, he takes us to a town famous for all these, Las


From the New York Times bestselling author of The Predators

For more than five decades, bestselling author Harold Robbins has thrilled millions of readers with tales heavy in action, ruthless characters, international intrigue, and the sexiest people ever captured in print.

Now in Sin City, he takes us to a town famous for all these, Las Vegas.

Jack "Lucky" Riordan is anything but lucky. The illegitimate son of Howard Hughes, he and his mother are cast out of Las Vegas when Hughes learns of the pregnancy, only for Jack to return years later to make his fortune.

Jack might not have luck. But he has an eye for a quick con. His skills soon allow him to climb the ladder as head of security for one of Glitter Gulch's most ruthless casinos, where cheating will get you jail, if you're not crippled by security first.

Jack sees it all: the corruption of fast money, the ways his friends will stab in the back for a shot at a jackpot, and the allure of women who will do anything to hit the big time.

But the big time in Vegas always comes at a cost . . . and Jack is about to learn the price of life in Sin City.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Though questions linger about just how much Robbins (1916-1997) contributed to the later books published under his name, this posthumous novel moves quickly and is great fun, a roman clef reminiscent of his early bestselling bildungsromans Never Love a Stranger (1948) and A Stone for Danny Fisher (1952). Packed with vintage Robbins boudoir scenes, it follows a street-smart youth clawing and copulating his way to wealth and power. Born Howard Hughes Jr., the bastard son of the famous multimillionaire recluse, Zack Riordan comes to Vegas in 1966 at age 12, and 12 years later has become the youngest casino security chief on the Strip. The narrative follows Zack's career as he gets involved in a vicious rivalry with the wastrel son and snooty Vassar-educated daughter of his mentor, Con Halliday, the aging owner of the casino Zack has helped save from ruin. When Zack is unceremoniously fired, he crosses continents to cut deals with Chinese criminal elements in Hong Kong and to parlay his quick wits and daring into enough money to finance his own casino, unwinding from hard days of sordid financial exploits by bedding one beautiful woman after another. Returning home, Zack discovers that he has a son by his former mentor's daughter, and finds himself wondering if he has paid too high a price for wealth and power. Those Robbins fans who haven't already fallen by the wayside will be rewarded for their devotion with this unexpectedly lively offering. (Oct.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Hormonal Harold, hale and hearty though dead since 1997, returns with his fourth-and-a-half postmortal novel. We number 2001's Never Leave Me as a half, since it's a reprint of Avon's censored 1954 paperback, the lust and sex restored by Forge. All right, Harold's estate offers this Robbins idea-taken from "a rich heritage of novel ideas and works in progress"-now fleshed out from that big Sin City where, doubtless, Harold's ghost instructs the Devil on joys of of the blowjob and how to run a string of call girls. Well, Harold is a winner here, because his ghost writes better than he did. Tight-packed plot and inside detail on gambling cheats in Las Vegas give off blue rocket-fire. Zack Riordan is the bastard child of Howard Hughes and Betty Riordan, at 22 a pretty, tip-hungry waitress whom the skeletal Hughes has up to his room for a twenty-minute servicing. When she returns to Vegas with three-month-old Howard Hughes Jr., as she wants to name him, Hughes's bodyguards pay her off and run her out of town. So baby becomes Zack Riordan. As a kid he runs a rag trade, handing out posters for the lesser gambling joints. Then a heavy-hitter from Chicago kills Betty, and Zack leaves town. He returns much wiser, falls in with lowlife gambling wizards who know everything about cheating, and at 23 works his way up to being the youngest security manager in Vegas, being given Con Halliday's casino to manage. When Con's daughter Morgan fires him, he rapes her, joins a Chinese gangster in Macao, gets into global gambling, returns to Vegas with $5M, finds he's father to Morgan's child, and marries her. Then he builds the $100M Forbidden City, Sin City's biggest trap. Seminal Robbins. A killer. The pagesgo whoosh.
From the Publisher
“Robbins faithful fans will be lining up for this one.”—Booklist

“Tight-packed plot and inside detail on gambling cheats in Las Vegas gives off blue rocket fire . . . Seminal Robbins. The pages go whoosh.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Robbins faithful fans will be lining up for this one . . . the plot is spiced with loads of fantastical sex and nymphomaniacal women.”—Booklist

[Sin City] “moves quickly and is great fun . . . packed with vintage Robbins boudoir scenes, it follows a street-smart youth clawing his way to wealth and power. Robbins fans . . . will be rewarded for their devotion with this unexpectedly lively offering.”—Publishers Weekly

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Sin City
Part 1ZACK RIORDAN1IN THE BEGINNING, GOD SAID, "LET THERE BE LIGHT."The first time I saw the Strip I thought God lived there. I was twelve years old in 1966, when Betty and me came down on a Greyhound from northern Nevada. We'd left Mina that morning, a little alkali mudflat town with Highway 95 for a main street--the kind of dry-rotted little desert town that even rattlesnakes shied away from. When we got off the bus in Las Vegas, we put our bags in a dime locker and walked from the bus depot to the Strip. I hadn't had anything to eat except a Baby Ruth candy bar since Tonopah and my stomach was growling. Along the way Betty had dropped the three-day's pay she collected before we left Mina, plunking it into slots, a quarter at a time, whenever the bus made a stop. She only had a dollar left when we arrived in Vegas but she was sure she could get a job waitressing right away. Just walk in and go to work--Vegas was that kind of town. By the end of her shift, she'd have enough tips and maybe even an advance on her wages to get us a room and something to eat.While Betty went into a restaurant to ask for work, I wandered up the Strip alone. It sounds corny, but I got stardust in my eyes the first time I saw the boulevard. It was Times Square, the Arabian Nights, a hundred carnivals, all thrown together and lit up at the same time--the Dunes, Aladdin, Sahara, Caesar's Palace. The lights struck me first, a brilliant neon collage, rocking on the Silver Slipper, blazing at the Stardust, beaming to the heavens from the giant searchlights atop the new Aladdin hotel.And the people--holy mackerel, it was the first time I saw guys in those monkey suits they call tuxes and women in slinky dresses that sparkled. In Mina women smelled of talcum powder and wore loose-fitting flowery dresses Betty called flour sacks, and men had mud on their boots and sweat under their arms. These women in Vegas had dresses that molded to their bodies and exposed the luscious curvesof their breasts. They smelled like expensive sex, Chanel No. 5, and Fleur de Rocaille. Even the men had an expensive smell, not like the Old Spice lotion that miners splashed on after showering.Flesh and glitter, that was Vegas--flesh and glitter and the song of money. I had never heard the song before, not this loud at least. Nickels and dimes dropping in slot cups were the money sounds in places like Mina and Tonopah, but on the Strip the music was numbing, seductive, putting you in a dream state and robbing your senses, the forbidden tune played by Lorelei to lure Rhine sailors to their doom, the beckoning of the Sirens to tempt Odysseus. It filled your ears all the way down the boulevard--the rattle of dice and cries at the craps, cards being shuffled at the blackjack tables, the clatter of a roulette ball bouncing around the wheel, the hum of thousands of slot reels spinning, silver flushing from them.Something spiritual entered my body and glowed inside me that night. I guess it was like the religious experiences that Holy Rollers in Mina talked about, when they woke up in the middle of the night and heard Jesus speaking to them. I only went to the Holy Roller church once and it scared the hell out of me, all that shouting and hysterical laughing, people talking in tongues. That's what it was like on the Strip, too, people shrieking and laughing and shouting mysterious utterances. "Bless these bones!" "Holy Mother, com'on six, gimme a six." "Jesus H. Christ, I hit the big one!" "Oh my God, my God, my God!"Whenever I asked Betty about God, she always told me that God was a bright light that shined through the universe. I figured out that night, when I saw the Strip for the first time, that God lived on the Strip and lit it all up.I also figured out something else that day. As soon as I was old enough, I knew I'd have to make something for Betty and me, otherwise we'd be migrants for the rest of our lives. I loved my mother, but as a neighbor once told me, Betty would always be hopping around on one foot, trying to keep her balance. If we were ever going to have something, I'd have to be the one to get it for us. Instead of pressing our noses against the plateglass windows separating the people with tuxes and slinky dresses from us streeters, someday we'd have the limos, the jewels, the fancy clothes.I wanted everything for Betty and me.Copyright © 2002 by Jann Robbins

Meet the Author

Born in 1916 in New York City, Harold Robbins was a millionaire by the time he was twenty. He lost his fortune by speculating on the price of sugar before the outbreak of World War II. Later, his fabulously successful career as a novelist, with many of his books turned into movies, would once again make him incredibly wealthy. For many years, Robbins enjoyed the high life among the rich and famous; he owned a huge yacht and had houses on the French Riviera and in Beverly Hills. His novels often mirrored his own experiences and were often people with the characters he had met. He died at the age of eighty-one, survived by his wife, Jann, and his two daughters, Caryn and Andreana.

Born in New York City, HAROLD ROBBINS is one of the world's bestselling authors, writing novels that often mirrored his own experiences and that were peopled by characters he had met. He is the author of The Carpetbaggers.

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Sin City 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 2 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of my favorite books
harstan More than 1 year ago
Twenty-two years old Las Vegas waitress Betty Riordan receives her fifteen minutes of ¿fame¿ when an ancient Howard Hughes has sex with her. Betty gives birth to a boy she names Howard Hughes, Jr. Three months after that Betty with her infant in tow tries to visit the father of her child. However, the Hughes entourage simply hands her cash to leave town with the renamed baby, Zack Riordan.

Zack returns to Vegas at twelve where he thinks the Strip must be home to God. He earns a minor living distributing sheets for the low life casinos. However, when Betty, as he calls his mother, is killed, Zack leaves town. He returns several years later and becomes a student of the gambling experts who know every cheating trick possible. His advanced degree in cheating leads to his appointment as security manager at Vegas¿ Glitter Gulch until the owner¿s daughter Morgan fires him. In retaliation he rapes her and flees to Asia before eventually returning to SIN CITY only to learn he sired a child with Morgan.

Five years have passed since Harold Robbins died and he still is cranking out tales as a prolific ghostwriter. The latest Robbins tale, SIN CITY, is perhaps ¿his¿ best novel in many years including when the author lived. Sort of written as a biographical fiction, the reader sees Las Vegas as a siren of the desert luring wannabes and cheats to its glittery idols. Fans of the author and his living retinue will enjoy SIN CITY by far the best of the posthumous career.

Harriet Klausner