Posts Tagged ‘killer poker’

Press Release: The California Roll by John Vorhaus

February 12th, 2010


A Novel by John Vorhaus



“Now that’s a scheme.” —Charles Ponzi
“It’s like an approachable Camus.” —Camus
“Please let me send you $50 million.” —Patrick Noochi, Nigerian Businessman


“The California Roll is grand entertainment . . . Double- and triple-crosses abound in the careening plot. . . . The writing is tight and wonderfully glib, and Vorhaus slyly, shrewdly hints that he’s snuking the reader. No caper-novel fan should miss this one.” —Booklist

 “John Vorhaus sure knows his stuff—a little too well, if you ask me. The California Roll is a hilarious and highly suspicious ride into the world of grift. It’s an immensely enjoyable read and an excellent primer if you’re looking for a career change.” —Lisa Lutz, New York Times bestselling author of Revenge of the Spellmans

“Whether you’re a mook or a snuke, The California Roll is more than entertainment, it’s an education. Buyer beware: John Vorhaus will steal your money and hours of your life, giving you nothing in return but a great read—fast, funny, and very, very smart.” —Harley Jane Kozak, award-winning author of A Date You Can’t Refuse



You’ve heard of a Ponzi scheme, but do you know the ins and outs of a Merlin Game, the Pigeon Drop, the Doolally Snadoodle, the Penny Skim, or the Dead Man’s Switch? World-class con artist and polymath extraordinaire Radar Hoverlander makes his living “on the snuke,” with his gift for bafflegab and an endless supply of assumed identities, the tools of a centuries-old trade. He’s very smart. And he’s very smooth. But how will he react when the snuke’s on him? As timeless as a perpetual-motion machine, and as timely as a Madoff arraignment, THE CALIFORNIA ROLL: A Novel by John Vorhaus (Shaye Areheart Books, March 16, 2010) brings you deep inside the world of con artistry, where every fact is fiction and the second liar never has a chance.


Vorhaus has created a character with a point of view like no one else’s. Radar’s been on the snuke since childhood, but he’s still looking for his California Roll, the one big scam that will set him up for life. With the mind of David Mamet, the voice of Tom Robbins, and the morals of a sailor on shore leave, Radar is one-of-a-kind—until, that is, he meets his match in the stunning, sassy package of Allie Quinn, a seemingly innocent stunner who knows far too much about him for someone he’s just met at a party. Allie is either the last true innocent or a con artist so slick she makes Radar look like a Quaker.


Radar’s sidekick, Vic Mirplo, a lovable but hapless grifter who couldn’t con a kid out of a candy cane, thinks Radar’s being played. But if love is blind, it’s also deaf, dumb, and stupid, and before Radar knows it, Allie’s straightforward request—that Radar teach her grandfather the art of the con—is the opening move in a twisted game of double-, triple-, and quadruple-crosses that threatens not only Radar’s manhood and livelihood, but perhaps most important: his life.


So clever, so witty, and so laugh-out-loud funny, THE CALIFORNIA ROLL will grab you from the first line and not let you go until the very last word (a word spoken, it should be noted, in the Hot Tub of Truth).



John Vorhaus is the author of The Comic Toolbox: How to Be Funny Even if You’re Not. An avid poker player, he has written several books on that subject, including the bestselling Killer Poker series and the poker-world novel Under the Gun. A veteran creative consultant, he has taught writing in twenty-four countries on four continents, most recently running the writing staff of the Russian version of Married . . . with Children. When not out making the world safe for situation comedy, he lives in Southern California, where he very much appreciates the weather.



by John Vorhaus

Published by Shaye Areheart Books, an imprint of the Crown Publishing Group

On sale: March 16, 2010

Price: $23.00 hardcover • Pages: 272 • ISBN: 978-0-307-46317-3

Also available as an eBook


For more information, contact:
Sarah Breivogel, 212-572-2722;


Shaye Areheart Books logo


The Crown Publishing Group