Tuesday, March 21

For Love and Money by Leslie Glass

Review by Gloria Feit

       In a departure from her excellent April Woo series, Leslie Glass has written a fast-moving novel in which the reader is plunged, practically from page one, into this tightly constructed standalone.  Annie Custer, bright, successful and ambitious stockbroker, has a lot going on in her life;  Her out-of-work husband, Ben, also a broker, is now in melt-down after a combination of things, not least PTSD following 9/11.  Their teenage daughter, Meg, is pursued by her own demons, while her younger sister, Bebe, is smoking marijuana, and her housekeeper is leaving to go back to Argentina.  As if all this weren't enough, her best friend, Carol, at Carol's father's request, begs Annie to take possession of her mother's stocks and bonds [her mother is apparently dying of cancer and her father becoming increasingly senile].  Annie feels she has no choice but to agree, fraught as the situation is with risk.  The total value of the 'stash' of securities turns out to be well over $3 million.  Annie does take the securities [including a huge stack of bearer bonds at once incredibly valuable and dangerous for her to handle], all with appropriate powers of attorney and a complete list of what is being taken.  When Carol's father, not shockingly, promptly changes his mind, claims he 'wuz robbed,' and threatens to sue, the battle is joined.  Machinations by another client with securities purportedly worth millions make the picture complete.

Annie is an interesting protagonist, dealing with difficult situations in her personal and professional life, and the author gives us an interesting tale of loyalty, friendship, deception, and marriages teetering on the edge.

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