Monday, 15 June 2015

'The Underwriting' by Michelle Miller (*****)

Happy Monday, readers! If you're not following me on twitter (and want to, of course feel free to follow me) then you will be unaware of my persistent tweeting last week about a wonderful book I finished reading, called The Underwriting by the ever-so talented Michelle Miller. I have talked to you before about FMcM and the wonderful YA and Adult books they have sent me these last few months, exposing me to authors and publishers I would not have come across otherwise. Well, The Underwriting is one of those books. When I was first told about it I had never heard of it, then later I discovered it started off as an online web-series, and was published in the USA last year. It is published in the UK on June 25th, and I highly recommend you all go and get a copy, because it is AMAZING.

I was kindly sent The Underwriting by FMcM in exchange for an honest review :)

Intrigued? Here's the blurb...

The Social Network meets The Wolf of Wall Street in The Underwriting, as it takes you behind closed doors into a post-recession world of sex scandals, power plays, and underhanded dealings.
Todd Kent is young, hot, and on his way to the top of Wall Street when the eccentric founder of Hook, the popular new dating app, handpicks him to lead its IPO. Given just two months to pull it off, Todd and his investment banking team brainy Neha, party-boy Beau, and old college flame Tara Taylor race to close the $14 billion deal of the decade. It's the chance of a lifetime for Tara, too, who sees her opportunity to break through the glass ceiling and justify six years of sacrifices for her career. But nothing is what it seems in Silicon Valley, and when tragedy strikes Stanford University's campus, there's no telling where the sparks will fly.

This is definitely one of those books I never thought I would adore, or even understand (the words 'investment' and 'banking' didn't fill me with confidence). I've never read a book like this before, but I was so pleasantly surprised at how engaged I was in the plot and the lives of all the characters. In the novel you follow the lives of Todd, Tara, Kelly, Charlie, Amanda, Juan and Nick with their entourage of business beetles scuttling within the walls of Wall Street and Silicon valley. 

Who knew investment banking could be this entertaining?!

There was nothing I could fault in this book. The characters were vivid, flawed, carefully crafted; you loved to hate them and even deliriously admired them at times. In particular, Todd Kent was someone whom I instantly disliked, yet when the book drew to a close I realised that he was one of the male characters whom I hated least. The plot was fast-moving and fluid; I was carried away with it and thoroughly caught up in the chaos until the final page. Miller herself, as a former employee of J.P. Morgan, casts an all-seeing and ruthless eye on the sparkling world where no one sleeps. It is clear that this book was not simply created to entertain. Miller leaves us as the readers to evaluate whether this is a world that should be allowed to exist, and whether some of the richest people in the world, who are behind our most well-loved apps and programs, should be allowed to carry on the way they are. 

Furthermore, Miller also showed us what it is like to be in the minority, and how social diseases such as sexism, homophobia and racism does not appear to faze most in the cut-throat world of Wall Street.

THE ENDING. Throughout the whole book I kept on wondering to myself, 'How is this going to end? What's going to happen to *character name*?' 'Will Hook go through?' But I couldn't guess at any of the answers. The ending was horrific, delightful, terrifying. The ending a book like The Underwriting should have, to remind readers that despite all preconceptions, Wall Street is not a place for happy endings. Not everyone comes out alive.

I thoroughly recommend that you, your mum, your grandpa and your uncle's dog go out on June 25th and buy this book. It will keep you captivated until the very last page, I promise you.

Buy The Underwriting here: http://www.amazon.co.uk/The-Underwriting-Michelle-Miller/dp/0399174850

Check out Michelle Miller and The Underwriting here: https://www.textpublishing.com.au/books/the-underwriting

I have an interview coming up with Michelle Miller on Wednesday! Stay tuned!

Until next time :)