Friday, May 4, 2007
Casinos & Catholic Coel's Fiction
Photo of Red River from Sam's Town hotel room by Pete Geniella; see his whole Shreveport post.
I'd like to think that most any pride I used to have is gone. Case in point: Hollie and I are staying at Sam's Town Casino Hotel in Shreveport this Sunday night. We've been wanting to get away for a weekend or a day off, and Hollie's dad ran across this $45/night Sam's Town deal for us.
Snob than I am, I always looked down on casino hotels, but I've been impressed with the Horseshoe (Harrah's) in Bossier City - although I've only eaten there - and we've had fun at the Ameristar in Vicksburg, where we've seen a couple bands and played the slots a little. I've never been to Sam's Town, but I just read that it was the original Harrah's in Shreveport; it opened in 2001 and sold to Sam's Town / Boyd Gaming in 2004, presumably around the time that Harrah's bought the Horseshoe. I'm sure the Horseshoe is more luxurious, but I've heard the Sam's Town is a close second. According to the 2006 Best of Southern Gaming Awards, for the Mid-South region (which includes the casinos in Shreveport, Bossier City, Vicksburg, Marksville, LA, and Philadelphia, MS), the Shreveport Sam's Town ranked #3 Best Overall Property, #1 Best Spa, and #1 Best Promotions. Well, they got us on the promotions. As for the spa, it's not free, but then again, what spa is? And it doesn't look outrageous to me. Maybe I'll talk Hollie into getting a massage or something and she can give us her assessment.
Incidentally, I've been reading this novel about corruption in an Indian casino. No, I don't have a gambling problem - I hardly even gamble - but if I did, this novel might help cure me! No, I just happened upon another novel (The Story Teller) by the same author recently - it was mixed in a box of assorted murder mysteries Hollie picked up on eBay once and was about to recycle on paperbackswap. Thumbing through it, I was intrigued enough to pick it up and read it, and I ended up liking it so much that I got Killing Raven from the library. It's not as good at Story Teller, but it's not bad. I'll keep reading Margaret Coel. Here's a good article about her, her faith, and her fiction, with photos from the real Wind River Reservation in central Wyoming, where her novels are set.
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