Six feet tall with a don't-mess-with-me attitude, Chainey (nobody calls her Martha) is a courier transporting large sums of money under the table for casino owners. She's been around long enough to know the score and has no qualms about making her living in the shadows of Sin City's neon lights...until the day her luck runs out.
Ambushed by masked shooters who make off with seven million in cash, Chainey's been given 72 hours to recover the casino owner's moneyor else she can pick out her own coffin. Her desperate run leads her all the way to San Francisco and back home to West Las VegasBlack Vegaswhere she calls in markers from friends and foes alike. But it's on the strip's famous Glitter Gulch that chainey will enter the ultimate poker game. The stakes: winner take all. The wager: her life.
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Siblings Frankie and Victoria DeGault, owners of the Riverhead Casino on the Vegas Strip, gives Martha Chainey several million dollars to deliver to a Mill Valley, California address. However, upon arrival, nothing goes right as masked hombres interrupt the exchange killing everyone, but a diving to safety Martha. An irate Frankie accuses Martha of stealing the cash. He gives her three days to recover his money or else. To keep her on the hunt, he sends a lunatic of a thug Baker to watch over Martha. Following the money, Martha traces the robbers to an Indian reservation with a casino located on it. Even with help from a close friend and a mobster, the truth may be out there, but seems one dangerous step away from Martha attaining it and the lost loot. Gary Phillips, author of the superb Ivan Monk novels, successfully switches to a female African-American protagonist. The story line is exciting as readers obtain an in depth look at the black side of Las Vegas. Although some scenes starring Baker seem a bit depraved and profanity is used, for the most part readers will love this tale starring a Cleopatra Jones-like heroine. Harriet Klausner