I'm nearing the end of The Vegas Kid by Barney Vinson, and though the plot doesn't move much (I'm sure there's a climax coming along soon, though), Vinson mirrors the atmosphere of Las Vegas perfectly, especially this line at the beginning of chapter 17 on page 137:
"Sam was happy, though. He didn't mind being Sammy Duran or dealing crap at Blackie's. In fact, he liked living in the desert and being himself for a change instead of some chrome-plated cowboy."
Exactly. Las Vegas is all about being yourself, doing what you want to do, tapping into your deepest passions and bring them swiftly to the surface. I'm going to dive into so much after we move there, inside and outside of Southern Nevada.
I also love Vinson's "About the Author" paragraph on the very last page:
Barney Vinson was born in the U.S.A., raised in Texas, and moved to Las Vegas a long time ago. He worked as a dice dealer at the old Dunes Hotel, then went to Caesars Palace where he was the casino gaming instructor for another long time. He lives in a small house by the side of the road with the Vegas skyline in the distance and writes full-time, while his wife Debbie works and pays the bills; they take in stray cats by appointment only. Vinson is the author of 23 books (six of which have been published). The Vegas Kid is his first novel.
I want to be Barney Vinson, but not working in any casinos. I want to earn enough money to write often, and I want to live as he writes. He and I have the same sense of humor.