- Hardcover: 416 pages
- Publisher: Dutton; First Edition edition (June 14, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0525952829
- ISBN-13: 978-0525952824
- Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.5 x 10 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 11 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,620,001 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Last Trade Hardcover – June 14, 2012
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"The Last Trade is an instant classic of the genre, a thriller you open on the runway and don't put down until you've crossed quite a few time zones."
-Seth Godin, author of We Are All Weird
"The Last Trade is an intricately woven thriller of our time, laced with the menacing effects of uncontrolled globalization, tumultuous financial markets, and destabilized technology, simultaneously gone awry with harrowing consequences."
-Pip Coburn, founder and CEO of Coburn Ventures and author of The Change Function
"The Last Trade joins a select group of books so riveting they caused me to miss my subway stop--and not even care. Here James Conway has constructed that rarest of jewels: an exquisitely suspenseful novel that also carries real moral weight, ominously invoking, in equal parts, post 9-11 paranoia and Wall Street greed. Highly recommended."
-Keith Dixon, The New York Times technology editor and author of The Art of Losing and Ghostfires
"Smart, gripping, and disturbing, The Last Trade will hold you 'til the last word."
-Peter Moore Smith, author of Raveling and Los Angeles
"[An] impressive first thriller...[and] a compulsively readable look into the arcane world of high finance...the financial world equivalent of Lisabeth Salander."
–Publishers Weekly, (starred review)
About the Author
JAMES CONWAY is a pseudonym for a hedge fund insider and a global strategy director at a major advertising firm. The Last Trade is Conway’s first thriller. He lives in Mount Kisco, New York.
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Showing 1-8 of 11 reviews
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"Last Trade" begins with a flash back to the devastating market collapse in the fall of 2008 - the financial meltdown tied to the sub-prime lending crisis leading to the failure of Bear Sterns, Lehman Brothers, and other high profile banks. But clever Drew was able to glean the pending crisis from the numbers, crunching endless data points and connecting dots, building a case that enabled his hedge fund employer, The Rising Fund, to take short positions on mortgage-related securities, thus making a fortune when the market collapsed, and launching hedge fund boss Rick Salvado into a Wall Street Rock Star - and permanent fixture on the financial news networks. And young Drew Havens has made millions - rich beyond his proverbial wildest dreams. Party on.
Flash forward to present time. The demands of high finance and competition have taken their toll; Drew is rich but not happy; estranged from his wife and young daughter. Meanwhile, billion-dollar trades betting against US companies in various industry sectors are being directed by obscure individuals under dubious circumstances across the globe. Worse, these individual traders, starting in Hong Kong, start dying mysteriously. Drew's young protégée suspects a conspiracy, and when he is apparently murdered, Drew is convinced that something very sinister is going on at The Rising Fund, and that Rick Salvado's public image may be much different than reality. It is also the point where this potentially unique and refreshing thriller slips into banality, reverting to common clichés, unlikely coincidences, and flat characters, and an uneven pace to finish as just another pop thriller leaving unanswered threads and not much satisfaction.
To bad - and tried hard to like this one, but in the end, "The Last Trade" comes up "short."
For most books in this genre, character development and slick editing are not primary objectives - this book is no exception. There is almost a character template for this genre - a womanizer, a divorcee who cant move on from ex-spouse, a righteous protagonist whose sudden conscience creates a conflict, an evil gaming the system.... An inexplicable contrived physical confrontation between the lead protagonist at a key point of the story, shoddy editing (numerous instances of defining "smurfing" verbatim, using "Chinese" for mandarin...) do not spoil the overall entertainment value of this book.
There is not a lot of character development and back story, so if you enjoy that sort of thing you might find this book lacking in these areas. And I thought the author could have tied the ending actions and threads together more clearly for the reader.
All in all, an easy, nicely paced read....but the way the author handled the ending dropped this to a good 4 star rating for me.