In the world of high finance, it's all about risk and return. With big risks come big rewards . . . and even bigger dangers. And no one knows this better than Stephen Frey. From the New York Times bestselling author of Trust Fund and The Day Trader comes an electrifying new thriller of money, mayhem, and murder
Veteran financial thriller writer Frey (Trust Fund; Day Trader; etc.) returns with another novel of greed and intrigue set in the back corridors of finance. Angela Day, an up-from-the-trailer-park young executive on the fast track at Sumter Bank in Richmond, Va., is summoned to a Tetons hideaway, lair of the reclusive and powerful moneyman Jake Lawrence. Lawrence wants Day to help him take over Sumter Bank and oust Day's boss, chairman Bob Dudley. There is no love lost between Day and the despicable racist Dudley, who schemes to keep blacks out of white neighborhoods by denying them loans; helping Lawrence would mean lots of money and a golden career for Day. But it also puts her life in danger, and she finds herself carelessly used as a pawn by both men. Toss in a muckraking black reporter friend of Day's, whose presence stirs her guilt over the horrific death of a black schoolmate at a college frat party, and a cowboyish bodyguard (complete with ten-gallon hat and pocket flask), and you have the makings of a television movie. Frey is best describing the internecine workings of financial institutions and those who manipulate them, but it's hard to spin an exciting yarn out of mortgage applications, especially when a stereotyped cast of hopeful black homeowners is pitted against nasty Southern good ol' boys. Frey's unremarkable prose ("How could humans be so awful Why couldn't they just get along ") doesn't help. (Jan.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information. -- PUBLISHERS WEEKLY.
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December 31, 2002
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Excerpt from Silent Partner by Stephen Frey
Risk versus return. What can be lost versus what can be gained. The essence of every critical decision. Invest in those dependable Treasury bonds yielding a slim but certain return, or throw caution to the wind and snap up shares of the high-tech start-up that could become next week ' s billion-dollar headline ' or, just as easily, a bankrupt memory. Marry the safe, stable person your parents adore, or run away with the lover who ignites body and soul with a single glance ' but lives only in the moment. Risk versus return. A simple concept that often imposes difficult choices. And, sometimes, terrible consequences.
Angela Day had chosen well in her business career. It was in her personal life where accepting the risks had proven catastrophic.
Until a few minutes ago the four-hour flight from Virginia had been silky smooth. Zero chop in the dark winter sky, which came as a relief because Angela hated to fly. So many times she ' d heard the catchy stat about planes being safer than cars ' usually from amused colleagues sitting beside her when she made the sign of the cross over her heart as the aircraft began to roll forward on takeoff. But as the Gulfstream V banked hard left on its final approach into Jackson Hole, Wyoming, and hurtled through a nasty air pocket, the statistical crutch disintegrated ' just as it always did.
' Get this thing on the ground, ' she whispered, her fingernails digging into the arms of the plush leather seat, her stomach starting to churn. ' Now. '
On the way west a uniformed steward had attended to her every want, serving a delicious crab imperial dinner an hour into the flight and constantly topping off her crystal glass with a dry Chardonnay. She was accustomed to commercial aircraft and economy class, accustomed to flat Coke in plastic cups, stale pretzels, and uncomfortable seats beside infants who screamed at any change in air pressure. So, being the only passenger on a private jet as lavish as a five-star hotel suite was a welcome change, even if the luxury was a one-time-only offer made available for some as-yet-unexplained reason by a reclusive billionaire she ' d only read about in the press.