As the Yonkers Inspector General and a Westchester Assistant District Attorney, Dan Schorr led numerous high-profile, complex, and fascinating investigations and prosecutions.His experiences tackling various types of criminal activity, sexual misconduct, and other wrongdoing inspired him to write his debut novel, Final Table, which was published by SparkPress on Oct. 5.
Schorr says that his time as a Westchester sex crimes prosecutor, as well as his work investigating sexual misconduct allegations with his own firm, Dan Schorr, LLC, revealed that the real world of sexual assault allegations is often very different from accounts depicted in movies and novels.
“Fictional sexual assaults are generally committed by strangers in dangerous places or by groups of assailants, which is consistent with the ‘stranger danger’ attitude that is widespread regarding potential assaults,” Schorr says. “But, in my investigative experience, more sexual assaults are committed by people who the victim knows and trusts, and many involve victims who have engaged in some consensual sexual contact with the offender prior to the nonconsensual activity. I thought it was important in this book to depict such a scenario with all of its nuances and complications.”
Final Table has garnered excellent reviews and praise, including from Westchester resident Sunny Hostin, the Emmy-Winning Co-host of The View and best-selling author of I Am These Truths and Summer on the Bluffs. Hostin calls Final Table “a compelling, timely, and fast-paced story of a sexual assault survivor’s fight to regain control of her life in the face of fear, self-doubt, international intrigue, and looming retribution.”
The novel is a political thriller about sexual misconduct in the #MeToo era, set in the worlds of international politics and high-stakes poker. It focuses heavily on the role that cable news and social media play in amplifying the accounts of survivors, while also harassing and intimidating individuals who end up in their crosshairs.
The story follows former White House staffer Maggie Raster, who is struggling to build her own consulting firm and overcome a recent sexual assault by an ex-boss.
The other principal character, Kyler Dawson, is a broke former poker champion who desperately needs to gain entry into a controversial but highly lucrative international poker tournament. The tournament’s host nation faces widespread condemnation for the recent murder of a prominent female U.S. journalist, and a pending presidential executive order threatens to prohibit Dawson and others from entering the contest.
Maggie’s chaotic first attempt to promote her new business as a television political analyst brings her to Kyler’s attention, convincing him that her political smarts and connections can provide the help he needs. By working with him, she has a shot at scoring a share of the $20 million poker prize if he wins.
To succeed, she will have to confront numerous challenges – personal and political, foreign and domestic – including mounting pressure to publicly address the misconduct of her former boss. Kyler also has his own obstacles and checkered past to overcome, but if each of them can face down their daunting challenges, he might win the tournament – and earn them both a fortune.
Setting an international political thriller in the world of tournament poker might seem like an unusual combination, but, Schorr says, “To me, they’re a perfect fit. Both involve huge decisions that must be made under extreme stress with incomplete information. And the costs of mistakes in both politics and poker, in the novel and in the real world, are often disastrous.”
Schorr lives in White Plains with his wife and two children.