Game of Thirty (Fiction)

Buy Print Book
Paperback Edition

"A suspense novel to rank with the classics." Stephen King – –

Streetwise PI Jimmy McShane has seen plenty, but he‘s never seen anything like the murder of Tommy Rennseler. A wealthy antiques dealer with a passion for Egyptian artifacts, Rennseler was killed like an ancient Egyptian: injected with cobra venom and ritually disembowelled. When he‘s hired by the dead man‘s daughter, McShane realizes that he‘s never seen anything like Temple Rennseler, either. She‘s beautiful, exotic and - obsessed with the Game of 30, a centuries-old form of chess that - perhaps - foretells the future. As McShane gets closer to the killer, he finds himself trapped in a more deadly game, with Manhattan as the gameboard.


"A perfect mystery, fast-paced, intricately plotted, with as many twists and turns as there are in the secret passages of King Tut's tomb… One of the best private eye novels of the past several years." - The Armchair Detective

"It is by turns funny, sad, infuriating, and as smoothly ominous as a serpent's egg. This is top-level entertainment; a page-turner that will keep its luster – and its mystery – long after the last page is turned." - Stephen King

"Meet New Yorker James McShane, private detective extraordinaire, a man of wit, confidence, and panache. Assisted by his beautiful office neighbor, a people-smart chiropractor, McShane investigates the murder by evisceration of a wealthy antiquities dealer specializing in Egyptian artifacts. He alternately charms, bluffs, or pushes his way around a short list of suspects, including the dealer's quirky family, a mysteriously ubiquitous sender of warnings, and an old-money pedophile. The author's literate, fluid prose, which sparkles with le mot juste, thus reveals an admirable hero, solid plot, and Egyptian cachet as well as the author's versatility. Sure to be popular." - Library Journal

"In this game of 30, the reader is the winner, no contest." - Publishers Weekly

"… takes crime fiction into realms of wit, imagination and deviousness seldom touched by writers of the genre." - The Dallas Morning News

"Kotzwinkle's venture into crime fiction is first rate, a delight to read and a successful attempt to expand the horizons of the genre... Unique and compelling." - Booklist

"... one of the best novels of the year, in any genre." - South Bend Tribune

"... a fast-paced, inventive thriller/mystery with something for everyone – cats, cobras, chiropractors, computer hackers, not to mention Hathor, the Cow Goddess of Love – with the added bonus of Kotzwinkle's trademark whacked-out humor." - The Times-Picayune, New Orleans

"... for thinking thriller fans." - Boston Herald

"A winner." - People Magazine