Somewhere on the journey from the comfortable upstate college town of Ithaca to the glistening moneyed world of downtown Manhattan, the Burgamots have lost their way.
This is Julian Trevelyan-Tubal, CEO of Tubals’, the last family-owned bank in London, founded by his ancestor Moses Tubal over three centuries before. He stands uneasily in the titanic shadow of his father, Sir Harry Trevelyan-Tubal, still the titular head of the bank, but long since removed from day-to-day affairs. Sir Harry lives in luxury in his villa in Antibes, his mind damaged by a stroke, dictating daily letters to his son which only his secretary Estelle understands and even reads. He is unaware of changes at the bank since his days in the office. Adventures in the hedge fund and derivatives markets have caused much the same damage to Tubals’ as to other banks, and now Julian must fly to Liechtenstein to divert ÂŁ250,000,000 illegally from the family trust to contain the damage long enough for him to sell the bank and get out, keeping this a secret from the financial world and even his own relatives.
If for nothing else, A YOUNG MAN’S GUIDE TO LATE CAPITALISM will be remembered as a clear-eyed, unsentimental look at money and our complicated relationship with it. The protagonist in Peter Mountfordâ€™s debut novel is a young biracial man, Gabriel de Boya, who is on assignment for The Calloway Group, a New York hedge fund. He finds himself in La Paz in Boliviaâ€”where the novel is setâ€”on the eve of the election that would usher in Evo Morales as President.
Gabrielâ€™s assignment is to predict first the outcome of the election, and subsequently its effect on the Bolivian gas industry. Gabrielâ€™s boss in New York, the aggressive Priya Singh, would essentially like to speculate about whether Morales would nationalize the Bolivian gas industry right away, as he promised. To obtain such sensitive information, Gabriel works incognito in the city passing off as a freelance reporter on assignment.
In HEALER, by Carol Cassella, forty-three year old stay-at-home mom Claire Boehning had been living a charmed life with her biochemist husband, Addison, and their only daughter, fourteen-year-old Jory. After Addison sold his biotech company, he and his wife bought a beautiful lakeside house in Seattle, where Jory attended private school, took ballet lessons, and enjoyed hanging out at the mall with her friends. Suddenly, everything turns sour, and mother and daughter are forced to retreat to their vacation home in the mountains of Washington State, while Addison scrambles to recoup the losses that Claire knew nothing about until a store rejected her credit card.
After reading UNION ATLANTIC, one fact becomes increasingly obvious: Adam Haslett is one heck of a talented writer. But what might not be that obvious is that he is also prescient. His gripping novel essentially revolves around a large fictional bank (Union Atlantic)â€™s spectacular failure. Get this: Haslett completed it the week that a real-life bank, Lehman Brothers, collapsed.
Haslett has said that while writing UNION ATLANTIC, he worried that no one would know what the Federal Reserve was, or â€śif they did they wouldnâ€™t want to read about it in a novel.â€ť He neednâ€™t have worried. After all, lifeâ€”in this case sadlyâ€”imitates art.
February 9, 2010
Â· Judi Clark Â· 9 Comments
Tags: Bankruptcy, Boston, Greed & Corruption, Job-centered, Money Â· Posted in: 2010 Favorites, Contemporary, Debut Novel, NE & New York, y Award Winning Author
A panoramic novel with a riveting mystery at its heart, STONE’S FALL is a quest to discover how and why John Stone dies. Chronologically, it moves backwardsâ€“from London in 1909 to Paris in 1890, and finally to Venice in 1867â€“ and in the process the quest to uncover the truth plays out against the backdrop of the evolution of high-stakes international finance, Europeâ€™s first great age of espionage, and the start of the twentieth centuryâ€™s arms race.
May 18, 2009
Â· Judi Clark Â· No Comments
Tags: 19th-Century, Espionage, Iain Pears, London, Money, Paris, Spiegel & Grau, Time Period Fiction Â· Posted in: Facing History, France, Mystery/Suspense, Thriller/Spy/Caper, United Kingdom