I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher.
THE DARLINGS offers readers a chance to view a Madoff-style scandal from the viewpoint of the 1%. New York attorney Paul Ross has finally made it. He is married to Merrill Darling, daughter of billionaire financier Carter Darling who is a successful lawyer in her own right. After weathering the downfall of his former financial employer, Paul finds a position in Carter's hedge fund as the head of the legal team. A few months into his new job, Paul and the Darling family are thrust into the media spotlight as an investigation by the SEC opens up into the dealings of the Darling Hedge Fund. The story opens with the suicide of family friend and business partner Morty Reis in an apparent attempt to avoid the pending SEC investigation and scandal surrounding a possible Ponzi scheme. The more Paul find out about the extent of the fraud, the harder it becomes for him to decide where his loyalties will lie.
Alger has experience as both a financial analyst and attorney and is able to provide fascinating insight into the events of the 2008 financial crisis that brought down so many investment firms. The book is told over the days surrounding Thanksgiving weekend which gives it a fast pace and sense of urgency as the characters race to uncover the truth. I loved seeing the financial crisis played out from the perspective of the privileged who were involved. The book was a very fast read as I was very interested to find out how the events would unfold. I wish Alger had developed the story and characters a bit more. If the story had been just a little bit meatier, it would have been really terrific. As it is, it is a very entertaining read and a compelling behind-the-scenes look at the 2008 financial crisis.
BOTTOM LINE: Recommended. A highly entertaining look behind the scenes of the 2008 financial crisis from the fictionalized perspective of the affluent and privileged individuals who were involved. This would make a nice vacation read.
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This giveaway ends on Friday, February 24 at 4:30pm PST.