Nastase, the controversial Rumanian champion tennis player, has produced an almost respectable thriller sprinkled with insider details of the international male tennis circuit. The story follows various tennis typesthe poor French Canadian on his way up, the ``Mad Montenegrin'' with his amusing on-court antics, and ``King Koras'' Belynkas, the popular American champion (and the novel's central character)through the French Open, Wimbledon, and finally the U.S. Open. Koras, depicted as a mythologically attractive figure embodying ``the living glory of the grand prix tournaments,'' is also, unfortunately, a flat, egotistical, and mostly unbelievable character. Along the way several top tennis stars are murdered, but finding out who dunnit or why is only minimally suspenseful. Greed, corruption and glitz in the tennis world dominate this too-long first novel. Jean B. Palmer, Phillips Acad. Lib., Andover, Mass.