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Not Enough Indiansby Harry Shearer
Synopses & Reviews
Meet the residents of Gammage, NY, a town so far down on its luck that Wal Mart would rather site its new store in the middle of a lake than in Gammage. Mayor Curtis Zorn and the rest of the town council are on the verge of declaring the town bankrupt, when inspiration strikes. Why not petition for Indian Tribal status, open a casino, and sit back while the cash rolls in? With the gears in Washington appropriately greased, the ink is barely dry on their Tribal certification when Gammage is transformed into the sovereign nation of the long-lost Filaquonsett tribe. It's only a matter of trading in their housecoats and galoshes for buckskins and moccasins, and boning up on their tribal lore and ceremonial dances, until the "Council of Elders" is ready to import some casino backing and gaming know-how, both of which come in the form of Tony "Loose Slots" Silotta, and his artificially enhanced Vegas showgirl wife. In short order the Filaquonsett Casino is the biggest, richest, most authentically Native American gaming property in the nation, the envy of Las Vegas and Atlantic City alike. It's only a matter of time before the lucky Filaquonsetts get their comeuppance...
Funny, smart, antic, and scathing, Not Enough Indians is a brilliant ensemble piece mixing hilarity, misadventure, and the great American dream.
"Shearer, probably best known for his work on The Simpsons and This Is Spinal Tap, sets his farcical first novel in the world of Native American — owned casinos. After being 'savaged by downsizing, by outsourcing, by plant-closing,' the citizens of withering Gammage, N.Y., successfully petition Washington to be recognized as the Filaquonsett tribe so they can build a casino. Their gambling operation has a negative impact on the casino of a neighboring tribe, and that tribe settles the score by having a toxic waste dump built next to the Filaquonsett casino. It's a silly setup, and Shearer uses it to beat home points about greed, materialism and ethnic identity. The book often becomes a morass of easy one-liners ('the process was proceeding at a pace that glaciers and snails would envy'). Stereotypes about Italian-Americans and Native Americans similarly fail to go over the top, instead occupying the queasy middle ground between funny and unfortunate. One bit of inspired nonsense involves a group of diaper-wearing grownups (they consider holding DiaperCon XII in the Filaquonsett reservation), but the scatological humor won't be enough to pull readers through." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Shearer has a fine time lampooning just about every institution and piety modern America has to offer — even NPR. A pleasing debut, even if the spectacle of Michael Eisner action figures chills the soul." Kirkus Reviews
"[A] wickedly funny debut novel....Though Shearer's ending falls a bit flat, readers can bet on lots of guffaws along the way." Booklist
"Shearer doesn't really know where to go with his audacious premise, and the story loses steam about halfway through. And while depth of character isn't necessarily required in satire, Shearer's main technique of characterization seems to be describing people's hairstyles." Library Journal
"Sadly, this witty premise is dragged down by an ungainly number of overly broad characters...while an unfortunate penchant for narrative overchoreography buries any good jokes under a pile of adjectives. (Grade: C)" Entertainment Weekly
"Harry Shearer has one of America's great satirical minds, and he's in beautifully wicked form with Not Enough Indians." Carl Hiassen
"Harry Shearer's Not Enough Indians is a comic travelogue thru the dog eat dog, mob eat mob, quid pro quo world of contemporary corporate commerce and corruption. Sad, funny, prescient and pathetic, it will leave you shaking your head in wonder and worry." Jamie Lee Curtis
"This is a brilliant and crisp page-turner that answers the question that every novel must answer anew in every age: how is the road to Hell paved with good intentions? Shearer's swift wit takes dead-on aim at our society's compounding layers of idiocy and virtuality. His characters are not loveable, but you feel sorry for them anyway, because they are people just like us. Hell, they are us." Andrei Codrescu
"Shearer's satire is tight and his prose is witty." Portland Mercury
Meet the residents of Gammage, NY, a town on the verge of declaring bankruptcy, when inspiration strikes. Why not go native, and open a casino? With Not Enough Indians, actor, writer, producer, and former Saturday Night Live cast member Harry Shearer joins the ranks of such comedian/authors as Steve Martin and Michael Palin, with a brilliantly funny, whip-smart satire of greed, collusion, distrust and betrayal in the halls of Washington and the casinos of Native America.
A Los Angeles Times bestseller in hardcover. Not Enough Indians is the bitingly funny satire about a down and out town who tempt fate by having themselves declared a sovereign Indian nation and opening a casino. Funny, smart, antic and scathing, Not Enough Indians is a hilarious sendup of the American dream.
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