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A Novel of a Legend is based on an actual character, one of the last of the ""high rollers"", George Ellsworth Smith, who after a summer of study applied to the horses, went on to make a fortune at the track. Leaving his mother and a girl behind, Smith followed the horses to Chicago where he fell in love- for the only time-with Doreen, a widowed twenty, but did not marry her because she had known other men. Moving on again, without Doreen, Smith synchronized luck with his system, made as much as $230,000 on one race, went after other women- and suggested marriage to Jessica. The Jockey Club's demand for his resignation (he had however not engaged in any malpractice) and his realization that Jessica loved a jockey, led to a complete crack-up from which he had barely recovered when he heard Doreen was dying. There is a death-bed vigil, along with some pretty silly revelations (she had lost his child-now adopted a blind one) but Doreen refuses his offer of marriage- and he goes back to the track.... A long ways from class- and the racing background certainly noses out the romantic sequences as far as entertainment value for a male market.

Publisher: Duell, Sloan & Pearce