SEVEN GAMES IN OCTOBER by Charles Brady

SEVEN GAMES IN OCTOBER

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KIRKUS REVIEW

To fix a World Series. . . all you need is just one player to be on your side for just one play. . . ."" So desperate Robert Hencill, a pharmaceuticals tycoon who has lost his fortune through compulsive gambling, decides to bet half a million on the Series and insure his bet by kidnapping the immediate family of star short-stop Roosevelt Chad. This he does, with the assistance of his hysterically sadistic housekeeper; and when Chad receives the kidnap threat (Throw the Series or Your Kids Will Die), he goes to the FBI. This is a fairly plausible, if unoriginal, premise for a quickie thriller--but first-novelist Brady can only keep the book going by twisting the plot into unpersuasive, awkward half-knots: the FBI brings in help from a Mafia mastermind, who quickly identifies Hencill as the kidnapper (but doesn't share this knowledge with the FBI); and Hencill chooses an unlikely method for contacting Chad, a method which allows the FBI to stage a grandiose stake-out. And meanwhile there are the Series games themselves, which are short on suspense--mostly because Chad is drawn as a tediously noble fellow incapable of betraying his team even to save his family. With the additional handicaps of miscalculated pacing and a misogynistic aroma (except for a grandma, all the women here are either vicious or dumb), this is technically deficient and vaguely unpleasant would-be suspense. Re-read Asinof's Eight Men Out (the Black Sox fix of 1919) instead.

Pub Date: Aug. 28th, 1979
Publisher: Little, Brown