The Druperman Tapes

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"Emmett Druperman, the CEO of the Galaxy Hotel and Casino and the head of a secret cooperative of the most powerful casinos in Las Vegas, has received a videotape threatening violence against the cooperative's casinos unless a ransom is paid. The criminals identify themselves only by a code name." "Furious and ready for a fight, the ruthless Druperman calls in Steve Forrester, the head of the Galaxy's security team and an ex-Las Vegas cop, to find out who the criminals are - and to stop them. Forrester must now rely on the best cop he knows, his
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2005 Hard cover New in new dust jacket. Sewn binding. Cloth over boards. With dust jacket. 336 p. Audience: General/trade. BOOK IS NEW

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"Emmett Druperman, the CEO of the Galaxy Hotel and Casino and the head of a secret cooperative of the most powerful casinos in Las Vegas, has received a videotape threatening violence against the cooperative's casinos unless a ransom is paid. The criminals identify themselves only by a code name." "Furious and ready for a fight, the ruthless Druperman calls in Steve Forrester, the head of the Galaxy's security team and an ex-Las Vegas cop, to find out who the criminals are - and to stop them. Forrester must now rely on the best cop he knows, his ex-partner, Frank Marshall. Unfortunately, Marshall has a drinking problem and a problem with Forrester - he hates his guts." "When the cooperative refuses to pay the ransom, the criminals go ahead with their violent plans and raise the stakes again. Banded together by greed and pulled apart by egos, the deadly group is surprisingly made up of only three small-time thieves - the glamorous, sophisticated casino grafter Dan Shiller, the mathematical genius and blackjack card counter Jurgen Voss, and the sadistic security guard Buster Malloy. Their plan is flawless - if they can only hold themselves together." As the vicious team puts together their final horrendous plan, the Las Vegas police, Forrester and Forrester's new girlfriend, Lucy Baker, scramble to stop them from killing thousands of innocent people.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Terrorist-level blackmail threatens the Las Vegas Casino Association in first-time novelist Goodger's slow-to-boil crime thriller. Videotapes of short clips of disasters taken from TV and movies mysteriously appear in the offices of the association's head, Emmett "Droopy" Druperman, a hard-nosed negotiator who refuses to make the payoff demanded by the blackmailers. Instead, he alerts his security chief, Steve Forrester, as each new threat comes in. Despite the increasingly high stakes-poisoning, fire, an Oklahoma City-style bomb-as Druperman and Forrester work desperately to keep the gaming tables open and the public in the dark, the plot seldom gains true momentum. The budding love affair between Forrester and pit supervisor Lucy Baker does nothing for the suspense because of a lack of chemistry. On the other hand, gambling fans will relish the behind-the-scenes look at Vegas-the moment when the obnoxious, aging Sinatra-esque singer Tony Francisco steps unwittingly into danger is a nice commentary on the thrill of betting and luck playing out-and the credible if unspectacular investigative search for the blackmailers builds to a solid action-movie finale. Agent, Jessica Kaye. (Nov. 19) Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Three small-time Las Vegas operators forge a bold scheme to extort millions from a casino chief. Weary Emmett Druperman, CEO of the Galaxy Hotel and Casino, has problems enough with a threatened strike and the unreasonable demands of temperamental Sinatra clone Tony Francisco. An anonymous demand for $10 million accompanied by an ominous videotape triggers an emergency call to his VP of Security Steve Forrester and a series of flashbacks to the principal players. Petty swindler Dan Shiller works various scams, targeting the weakest croupier and sneaking in late roulette bets. Egghead Jurgen Voss has a more sophisticated racket, card counting-not technically illegal but not permitted by casinos either. When Forrester confronts him at a Galaxy blackjack table, Forrester is backed up by pretty dealer Lucy Baker, and romance blossoms for the lonesome duo. Shiller and Voss are recruited into the extortion scheme by pork-bellied Buster Malloy, a veteran security guard at the Galaxy. Until recently, Malloy had a comfortable domestic relationship with aging blond hooker Helga Johanssen, who liked a little roughhousing with her sex. When he accidentally killed her, he succeeded in disposing of the body without anyone noticing, and now he's emboldened to try for the big score. The first tape he sends Druperman shows hotel guest Barney Leopold being poisoned in the coffeeshop. Game on. A character-driven debut caper with great characters and authentic atmosphere-but little tension.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312321994
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 2/1/2005
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 336
  • Product dimensions: 6.06 (w) x 9.88 (h) x 1.13 (d)

Read an Excerpt

The Druperman Tapes




Even before the envelope containing the tape and the threatening letter landed on his desk, a series of minor annoyances had upgraded Emmett Druperman's disposition from everyday irascible to red-flag aggravated.

For starters, early-morning pickets were teeming around the Galaxy like ants at a picnic, discouraging walk-in traffic and reducing the casino drop alarmingly.

Then there was this message on his machine from Tony Francisco's agent, suggesting that unless the hotel upped the ante, the singer might be "forced" to cancel an appearance on whose promotion Druperman had just invested well over half a million dollars.

And just to finish things off nicely, his hemorrhoids were on fire.

Preoccupied with these fiscal and physical irritants, Druperman came close to consigning the envelope to the trash along with the few other pieces of junk mail that had escaped Edith's steely eye. Only the envelope's very plainness saved it. The padded brown nine-by-twelve envelope bore neither postage stamp nor metered imprint; no courier slip was attached; it had no markings except for a neatly printed address label.

Which was the other funny thing. EMMETT DRUPERMAN, PRESIDENT OF LVCA, CONFIDENTIAL, the label read. Druperman never got mail in his capacity as head of the Las Vegas Casino Association. Few people knew that the LVCA even existed, fewer still that he was its president. Secrecy had always been the association's watchword. Its members, powerful men who ran most of the casinos in Las Vegas, frequently bent the law to suit their own purposes, rarely committing anything to paper. Certainly they never wrote to one another. Most of Druperman's everyday correspondents addressed him by his far better known title of Chief Executive Officer, Galaxy Hotel and Casino.

For a fleeting instant, he considered the possibility of a letter bomb. Before corporate respectability had become the norm in Vegas, the CEO had acquired his share of enemies. But just as quickly, he banished the notion—after all, this was the twenty-first century and the town had long since outgrown its gangster heritage. Besides, Edith had already slit the envelope open and survived. Druperman imagined his secretary blown to pieces, bits of her scrawny body pasted to the ceiling, those goddamn pearls she always wore embedded in the walls like bullets at a crime scene. He enjoyed the thought briefly, then put it out of his mind.

Druperman tipped the contents of the envelope onto the polished mahogany surface of his desk, noting three items: a laser-printed letter on a single unfolded sheet of white paper, a VHS tape in a generic cardboard sleeve, and a red five-dollar chip from the Dunes Hotel and Casino.

His curiosity aroused, the CEO examined the red chip. Nothing unusual about it; chips from defunct casinos were a dime a dozen in Vegas. He rolled it between thumb and forefinger absently while straightening his bifocals, then picked up the letter.

As he read, it dawned upon Emmett Druperman that he might now have a real problem on his hands, a potentially deadly one that could cause his current concerns with hard-ass unions and hemorrhoids and double-dealing entertainers to pale by comparison. With a deepening frown, he inserted the tape into one of the VCR units in his media wall. Returning to his desk, he picked up the remote and pushed PLAY. He stared at the TV in disbelief, his normally sanguine countenance darkening several shades as the message on the big screen became clear.

The CEO pushed a button on his speakerphone and barked into it. "Edith? Call Steve Forrester."

After thirty seconds, his secretary's voice came back, "He's not in yet, Mr. D."

"Well, find him. And get him in here—now."

Emmett Druperman released the speakerphone button, ending the discussion. Where the hell was his Vice President of Security when he needed him? He squirmed in his plush leather chair, trying unsuccessfully to promote a little relief from the burning pain in his ass.

THE DRUPERMAN TAPES. Copyright © 2005 by John Goodger.

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  • Posted December 9, 2008

    more from this reviewer

    enjoyable investigative tale

    The Druperman Tapes John Goodger St. Martin¿s, Nov 2004, ISBN: 0312321996 In Las Vegas normally just irascible grumpy Galaxy Hotel and Casino CEO Emmett Druperman has watched his temperament turn hot coal irate from minor irritants. Pickets were reducing the drop in leisurely casino players who detested stepping past the ¿ants¿ picketing his facility. The agent of his entertainer wants more money or he will cancel in spite of a half million ad campaign. His hemorrhoids on fire, Emmett receives a plain envelop addressed to him as the head of LVCA (Las Vegas Casino Association) containing videotapes and demanding $10 million or else from the casino owners.--- Realizing he has real trouble, Emmett hands everything over to his Vice President of Security Steve Forrester who takes the threat seriously. They think of possible strip con artists such as Dan Shiller and Jurgen Voss, but Steve cannot picture either doing what happened on the tape, the poisoning of a guest. Knowing that the culprit is most likely a casino insider, Steve needs to figure out who would be bold enough to risk murder as opposed to card game scams.--- THE DRUPERMAN TAPES is an enjoyable investigative tale that showcases Las Vegas glitz from the perspective of those who keep the casinos safe. The cast is powerful as all the key players seem genuine (hemorrhoids will do that) and a subplot involving a romance makes former cop Steve seem that much more real. Though the cat and mouse game never quite takes the audience over the edge, John Goodger hits black jack with his first hand.--- Harriet Klausner

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