Dancing Aztecs (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

"What a splendid romp! Very much a product of its time and place (New York City, mid '70's), and yet it doesn't feel dated: full of Westlake's brilliant plotting, misunderstandings, and shenanigans, and possibly the highest density of slapstick in any book I have ever read. Westlake has thoughtfully provided a Dramatis Personae at the beginning of the book, but I wish he had supplied a scorecard, so that the reader could keep track of how many times various characters get punched in the face; each face punch seems to get exponentially funnier that the previous ones. Highly recommended for fans of Paul T. Anderson's movie, American Hustle." - Spiros

— From Spiros' Staff Picks


A small South American republic has decided to capitalize on its national symbol: a prized gold statue of a dancing Aztec priest. The president asks a sculptor to make sixteen copies of it for sale abroad. The sculptor replaces the original with one of his fakes, and ships the real one to New York City for an under-the-table sale to a museum. The statues travel to America spread out among five crates, labeled to ensure that delivery goes as planned. But it doesn t work.
Asked to pick up the crate marked "E" at the airport, delivery man Jerry Manelli, confused by his client's Spanish accent, takes crate "A" instead. The statue disappears into the city, leading him on a baffling chase, which--if he comes up with the wrong Aztec--could cost him his life.

About the Author

Donald E. Westlake (1933-2008) wrote over a hundred novels under his own name and pseudonyms, including Richard Stark. Many of his books have been made into movies, including "The Hunter," which became the brilliant film noir "Point Blank," and the 1999 smash hit "Payback." The winner of the three Edgar Awards, he was named a Mystery Writers of America Grand Master, the highest honor bestowed by the society, in 1993.

Product Details
ISBN: 9781468306828
ISBN-10: 1468306820
Publisher: Overlook Press
Publication Date: July 30th, 2013
Pages: 303
Language: English