2022 Readers’ Favorite Book Awards Gold Medal Winner in Fiction (Thriller - Political)
2022 16th Annual National Indie Excellence Awards Winner in Literary Fiction
2022 16th Annual National Indie Excellence Awards Finalist in Political Thriller
2022 International Book Awards Finalist in Fiction: General and Fiction: Literary
2021 Firebird Book Award Winner in Political Thriller
2021 Best Book Award Finalist in Fiction: Literary
2021 Best Book Award Finalist in Best New Fiction
2021 American Fiction Awards Finalist in Thriller: Political
“An international political thriller that successfully weaves together multiple storylines. . . electrifying. . . A well-paced and timely novel.”
“Dan Schorr’s Final Table is a top-class political thriller by a professional who knows the world he writes about. Authentic and moving, Final Table lays bare the highest level of international politics, and will not let go of the reader. Highly recommended.”
—Alan Furst, best-selling author of A Hero of France and Midnight in Europe
“Final Table is a captivating, multifaceted, original debut novel that is smart and riveting from the first word to the last. Dan Schorr brings his real-world experience as a sex crimes prosecutor and investigator to create a powerful, engaging, and complex study of media, politics, and trauma. A must-read.”
—Rita Cosby, Emmy-winning TV host and best-selling author
“Final Table is a compelling, timely, and fast-paced story of a sexual assault survivor’s fight to regain control of her life in the face of fear, self-doubt, international intrigue, and looming retribution. Former sex crimes prosecutor Dan Schorr’s nuanced and layered debut novel smashes stereotypes and cliches with a strikingly original and memorable narrative.”
—Sunny Hostin, Emmy-winning cohost of The View and best-selling author of I Am These Truths and Summer on the Bluffs
“If you enjoy poker, you need to read Final Table. Dan Schorr’s novel is an exciting, unpredictable, nonstop political thriller, all told through the lens of high-stakes poker’s exhilarating triumphs and soul-crushing bad beats.”
—Chris Moneymaker, 2003 World Series of Poker Champion
“What do you get when you mix a high-stakes poker game, a #MeToo accusation, and a highly volatile political situation featuring the murder of an American journalist in a country under fire for human rights abuses? Author Dan Schorr would say it is a recipe for a mind-blowing thriller titled Final Table.”
“A great purchase for all collections as it tackles some relevant political issues, the Me Too movement, and the growing incredibility of popular social platforms.”
“A fascinating, intense, fast-moving thriller about international politics, major tournament poker, toxic social media, and high-profile sexual misconduct accusations. . . . The novel covers a myriad of events across the globe with compelling, unexpected plot twists, original characters, and engaging, entertaining poker hand analysis.”
“A captivating read and a suspenseful journey with a powerful payoff. The disparate worlds of high-stakes gambling and international politics are artfully stitched together by writer Schorr, who commands obvious real-world expertise in both arenas. On every page, we’re treated not only to the credible true-to-life narrative but also to perceptive insights into what causes people to do what they do and act the way they act. What we observe through these imperfect characters is the essence of our own souls and the discovery of what makes us all tick.”
—Nolan Dalla, author of One of a Kind: The Rise and Fall of Stuey “The Kid” Ungar, The World's Greatest Poker Player
“. . . a little crazy intellectual stimulation. . . this political thriller about sexual misconduct will not disappoint.”
“Final Table is your next must-read political thriller. . .”
DEBUT In the first political thriller by Schorr (a former New York City sex crimes prosecutor), an American journalist investigating government brutality in a fictional nation (the Kingdom) has just been murdered. Meanwhile, Maggie Raster has recently resigned from the White House to start her own political consulting firm, but she can't shake the trauma from a sexual assault by her ex-boss. Kyler Dawson is a poker player in desperate need of a win after recently losing millions. He has the opportunity to play in a $20 million jackpot tournament in the Kingdom. Because of the recent murder, Americans are boycotting the tournament and demanding that the U.S. government ban people from traveling to the Kingdom, so Kyler hires Maggie to help prevent the travel ban. This is a high-stakes political story that encompasses the lives of different people by bringing them all to a head amid diplomatic struggles between the United States and another country, which is believed to possess nuclear weapons. VERDICT This is a great purchase for all collections as it tackles some relevant political issues, the Me Too movement, and the growing incredibility of popular social platforms.
An international political thriller that successfully weaves together multiple storylines.
After leaving her position as a former special assistant to the White House chief of staff, Maggie Raster hopes to use her political experience as a consultant—a career that’s more in line with her deep ambitions. Then a celebratory night out ends in a sexual assault, and Maggie finds herself navigating an unexpected trauma. After an attempt to promote her new consulting career during a TV interview goes awry, she finds herself the focus of cable-news reports. Debut novelist Schorr deftly juggles multiple plotlines while anchoring the work in a fictional country known as the Kingdom, led by an ambitious crown prince who claims to be a progressive reformer. An acclaimed American journalist is murdered in the country, with all indications pointing to the prince’s involvement. The thinly veiled portrait of the real-life murder of Jamal Khashoggi may turn off some readers, but Schorr works hard to provide realistic stakes, and his depictions of social media and the cable news cycle add strong verisimilitude. The plot hinges on a controversial $20 million poker tournament that the crown prince is hosting in the hope of establishing international goodwill. The main character of the poker-related sections is former World Series of Poker champion Kyler Dawson, who, in spite of his success at the poker table, is mired in debt and divorce; in the tournament, he’s at odds with player Priya Varma, a courageous, beloved activist. Eventually, Kyler seeks out Maggie, seeing her as the only person with the skill to protect his reputation. Meanwhile, Maggie continues to handle the fallout of her assault. Much of the narrative centers on Kyler’s poker exploits, including lengthy flashbacks that will seem overlong for those not well versed in the game. Also, Kyler’s self-destructive tendencies aren’t contrasted with a deeper interiority; even when readers may wish to root for him, Kyler falls into self-pity. Nevertheless, the high stakes of a potential standoff between the United States and the Kingdom provide electrifying energy as the novel reaches its climax.
A well-paced and timely novel.