Bloomberg Reviews The Gods

Hedge-Fund Gods Meet Sexpot Killer in Vonnegut Thriller: Books

Bloomberg reviews The Gods of GreenwichIt’s December 2007, markets are dancing into a Grand Canyon, and Jimmy Cusack’s lead investor has just uttered the four scariest words in Hedgistan:

“I want my money,” he says.

Norb Vonnegut’s second thriller, “The Gods of Greenwich,” is off to a thumping start.

The demand amounts to financial defenestration for Jimmy, who’s locked into a lease in the Empire State Building and a $3 million mortgage on a condo in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District. There goes $120 million — 85 percent of the money managed by the Irish Catholic kid who left Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (GS) to start his own fund.

Jimmy’s troubles are just beginning. As markets flip from mean to life-threatening, he folds the fund, puts on his crooked grin and lands a job with Cyrus Leeser of LeeWell Capital in hedgehog heaven, Greenwich, Connecticut. With his winning streak, hush-hush hedges and shoulder-length black hair, Cy is a legend in the making.

What Jimmy doesn’t know is that Cy has placed a pair of massive wagers — one betting that shares in an Icelandic bank will plunge, the other assuming that alternative energy company Bentwing (ticker: BEG) will fly. What neither knows is that the Icelanders have wealthy friends in Qatar.

Seductress With Syringe

As the book opens, everyone is hiding something, not least Rachel Whittier, a sultry 27-year-old nurse to a Park Avenue plastic surgeon. She has a mysterious scar on one hand, a Texas twang and a taste for murder — a seductress with a syringe and no scruples. Has Vonnegut, a former Morgan Stanley (MS) wealth manager, written himself into a corner? No chance: The pieces of this plot mesh as smoothly as a well executed trade.

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