Strictly For Cash


Strictly for Cash From the moment the reins of the richest casino on the Florida coast fell into his hands, he was sucked into a whirlpool of suspense, intrigue, murder and ruthless ambush from which there was no escape.

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We hit Pelotta around nine-thirty at night, after a four-hour run from Kern City. Packed with stores, souvenir stands, cafés and filling stations, it was like any of the other small towns along the Florida coast.

The trucker, whose name was Sam Williams, pointed out the places of interest as we drove along the main street.

“That’s the Ocean Hotel,” he said, jerking his thumb at a gaudy affair of chromium, neon lights and bottle-green awnings that stood at the intersection that led across the town and to the sea. “Petelli owns every brick of it. Come to that, he owns pretty well the whole town. He own s the stadium too. That’s it up there.”

I peered through the windshield of the truck. Aloof on a hill, overlooking the town, was a circular concrete building, open to the sky in the centre, and roofed in on the rear stands. Above the roof were vast batteries of lights strung together on big steel frames, and which could be focused down on the ring.

“There must be a pile of jack coming out of that joint,” Williams went on. He wiped his red, fleshy face with the back of his hand and spat out of the window. “Petelli promotes a fight programme there every Saturday night.”

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