Dancing Aztecs by Donald E. Westlake

By Donald E. Westlake

Unique e-book: 1976

When 16 copies of a well-known Aztec statue arrive in manhattan, males will die to determine which one is the genuine thing
A small South American republic has determined to capitalize on its nationwide image: a prized gold statue of a dancing Aztec priest. The president asks a sculptor to make 16 copies of it on the market in another country. The sculptor replaces the unique with one in all his fakes, and ships the genuine one to long island urban for an under-the-table sale to a museum. The statues commute to the US unfolded between 5 crates, classified to make sure that supply is going as deliberate. however it doesn’t work. Asked to choose up the crate marked “E” on the airport, supply guy Jerry Manelli, harassed by means of his client’s Spanish accessory, takes crate “A” as an alternative. The statue disappears into town, major him on a baffling chase, which—if he comes up with the incorrect Aztec—could fee him his lifestyles.

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Do you? ’ Johnny Mac went to the door and motioned for two young men, both looking severely uncomfortable, to remove the offending object. Sean was covered in blood now, and was having difficulty breathing. It was a definite hospital job. When the man had been removed, Johnny Mac poured two large whiskies and gave one to his friend. ’ Cain laughed. His shirt was splattered with blood and his knuckles were grazed, but Johnny could see that his temper was subsiding. ‘Oh, he did that. Fucking moron.

It wasn’t even the sex − just being near her, the smell of her, the softness of her skin. He closed his eyes in anticipation; that at least he could look forward to − a night together at last. No sounds of men groaning in their sleep, no clattering of POs as they made their rounds, no more lying awake looking at nothing, willing the dawn to break so he could get out of his cell, dreaming of decent food and a drink in a real pub, wondering what the rest of the world was doing, wishing he were still a part of it.

Now, as she sat in her transport café, eating a huge fried breakfast, shovelling the food into her mouth, her son Michael watched her with distaste. She was colossal but no one had the guts to mention it any more; it was pointless anyway − she just lost her rag. Food was Caroline’s only pleasure, and she wouldn’t listen to any kind of criticism or warning about her health. As far as she was concerned she was fine; Michael had learned long ago not to rock that particular boat. The strange thing was, she still looked after her skin and her hair.

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