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Money to Burn by James Grippando (Review #3)

Reviewed by Allen Hott

Money to BurnThis is quite a story and encompasses several different things that most likely could occur to anyone. Marrying and losing a wife very suddenly doesn’t usually happen to most folks but this one is done in a different way, different scenery, and different circumstances. And those things combined all go to help Grippando lead into this book.

Michael Cantella is an extremely successful player on Wall Street and while on a celebratory cruise he marries his girlfriend, who is fairly new to Michael and the whole Wall Street scene but she is still a part of it. However while still on their own disjointed portion of the cruise Ivy, the wife, disappears and everything points to her having somehow fallen off the boat and drowned.

Michael returns to the financial world and after a period of time he remarries while still climbing higher and higher in his profession.

Much of what Michael was involved in was a somewhat strange and almost little known part of the actual stock market. He was involved in short selling which although not illegal seemed to be very borderline as far as business. Bernie Madoff not only became famous for it but also went to prison for his part in the scheme that he concocted. When this same type of Madoff occurrence happened to Michael he basically was blacklisted and except for his own immediate superior he was pushed out of work.

Since his dealings were so large many people and holdings were wiped out. It was so large that his firm took a beating and had to begin looking to file bankruptcy. Then all sort of strange things begin happening. His wife decides to divorce him while other oddities also happen. He is almost run over by a car in a very deliberate fashion; an envelope that he receives basically explodes with some very flammable powder in it burning his hand, and threats of all type force him to look for help.

His step brother who is an attorney and his grandfather who raised him appear to be the only folks interested in helping. When a stockbroker type analyst berates Michael and blames him for the disaster that occurs to his company and the entire market real problems develop the book begins its twisty way to a finish.

There are many different and interesting characters developed as Grippando pulls all of the many plots together. Most of them are described in such a way that not only can the reader see them but he can actually feel their presence while he reads. How they appear and even reappear makes for some head scratching off and on by the reader. And the communication technology is really way out there!

Even the title “Money to Burn” is woven into the storytelling in a way that not only seems logical but is almost downright brutal.

Readers of suspense have made Grippando one of the best know writers of that genre and this book is no exception. Pick it up and begin. You will not be sorry nor will you be able to put it down until the ending! Excellently done!

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