Magazine article World Literature Today

What to Read Now Financial Crisis Fiction

Magazine article World Literature Today

What to Read Now Financial Crisis Fiction

Article excerpt

A friend recently came across a book review that described my novel, The Darlings, as a "financial thriller." She wrinkled her nose. "Financial thriller?" she asked me. "Isn't that an oxymoron?"

At first blush, finance can seem dry. The language of hedge funds and bond trading is admittedly anything but thrilling. The financial world is, however, wonderfully fertile ground for literary exploration. It's populated with villains and heroes. Many of the themes commonly found in great literature-greed, power, loyalty, morality-play out in grand scale on Wall Street on a daily basis. And with the recent economic collapse at the forefront of our consciousness, it makes sense that finance would increasingly find its way into fiction.

The novels selected below use the recent financial crisis as a backdrop for individual stories of love and loss. The characters-both rich and poor-contend with fear and instability in a world in the throes of financial collapse. These novels feel both relevant and timeless, as relatable today as they will be years from now. Thrilling, indeed.

The Privileges

Jonathan Dee

Adam and Cynthia Morey have it all. Both are beautiful and socially accepted. Adam's career in private equity has afforded them plenty of money. But for the Moreys, it may not be enough. As their marriage begins to fall apart, Adam is confronted with an ethical choice that will either destroy his family or secure for them a life of boundless privilege. The Privileges is an intelligent and often humorous observation of both a marriage and a particular social stratum in New York on the cusp of the financial collapse. …

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