Judith D Collins
The Widow of Wall Street
Publisher: Atria Books
Publication Date: 4/11/2017
My Rating: 5 Stars A provocative new novel by bestselling author Randy Susan Meyers about the seemingly blind love of a wife for her husband as he conquers Wall Street, and her extraordinary, perhaps foolish, loyalty during his precipitous fall. Phoebe sees the fire in Jake Pierce’s belly from the moment they meet as teenagers. As he creates a financial dynasty, she trusts him without hesitation—unaware his hunger for success hides a dark talent for deception.
When Phoebe learns—along with the rest of the world—that her husband’s triumphs are the result of an elaborate Ponzi scheme her world unravels. Lies underpin her life and marriage. As Jake’s crime is uncovered, the world obsesses about Phoebe. Did she know her gilded life was fabricated by fraud? Did she partner with her husband in hustling billions from pensioners, charities, and CEOs? Was she his accomplice in stealing from their friends and neighbors?
Debate rages as to whether love and loyalty blinded her to his crimes or if she chose to live in denial. While Jake is trapped in the web of his own deceit, Phoebe is faced with unbearable choice. Her children refuse to see her if she remains at their father’s side, but abandoning Jake, a man she’s known and loved since childhood, feels cruel and impossible.
From penthouse to prison, with tragic consequences rippling well beyond Wall Street, Randy Susan Meyers’s latest novel exposes a woman struggling to redefine her life and marriage as everything she thought she knew crumbles around her.
“Meyers is quickly taking her place among the ranks of women’s fiction authors who write big-issue novels that explore the inner lives of women in crisis without descending into melodrama or cliché. Readers who enjoy Jodi Picoult will want to add Meyers to their to-read list” (Booklist Review).
Randy Susan Myers returns following Accidents of Marriage (2014) with her latest riveting domestic suspense, THE WIDOW OF WALL STREET — bold and edgy an inside look at betrayal in a marriage. The blind love, lies, dark secrets; the unraveling, devastation, and the need to rebuild a life after the fallout of Wall Street and a fraudulent husband's Ponzi scheme. Was the wife living in denial? For fans of The Good Fight, especially this week's episode. Phoebe and Jake met when they were teens. Jake and Phoebe come from different backgrounds. Jake is obsessed with money and success. He wants and needs a different future than his childhood. He thinks this will earn him the respect he craves. Phoebe makes a wrong decision, leading her to guilt and loyalty to Jake. They marry, despite her overbearing mom’s warning. He soon excels and opens a brokerage house. Things go well. However, soon greed, power, and money get in the way. He is dishonest. He thinks it is temporary. He has a private fund. A Ponzi scheme. A crime soon to be uncovered. The time bomb. Fraud. Phoebe is blind to it all. The money is flowing – wealth, prestige, homes, and power, Starting from Nov 2009, we learn Jake is now in prison. They have lost everything. Phoebe takes a Greyhound bus to the upstate NY correctional prison. She despises him. He still has her under his thumb, worrying about what she is wearing and appearances. He still has not acknowledged his part in the disaster. However, Phoebe is struggling. She has taken her husband’s side over her children, causing a huge strain. Her children are strangers to her now. She must face Jake’s crime. The wife of a demon. Her entire marriage had been a battle against being known only as Jake’s wife—now she feared the battle could be over for good. She had become a widow to a living man and a childless mother. How did they get to this place? People wondered if she knew. Was she this naïve? She trusted this man. Her life is shattered. How many people has he fooled? A monster. The author takes us back to the early days to the 1960s, where we hear from two points of view: Phoebe and Jake. The roller coaster ride from mansions, and wealth to prison. When yet another tragedy occurs, Phoebe is forced to make a decision. She has to cut Jake free, even though he felt he could straddle the world on other’s people’s legs. Love and loss. Survival. He had squandered and cheated people and fooled millionaires, and lessons never learned. Can Phoebe survive this disaster and come out whole once again? A different person perhaps? The author does an outstanding job with the couple's journey from both perspectives. What a ride. The dark secrets of a husband and his scheming. A financial empire crumbling. The betrayal. From domestic suspense to psychological. If you enjoyed the Madoff miniseries, (good), assured to find THE WIDOW OF WALL STREET engaging. Of course, in Palm Beach we hear his name often; however, Trump has taken over the spotlight here on the island. Randy Susan Myers tackles highly charged topics, telling deeply personal stories of women. Their complexities, fear, pride and despair are woven brilliantly into the absorbing narrative. Fans of Jodi Picoult, Diane Chamberlain, (A Stolen Marriage) Kimberly S. Belle (The Marriage Lie) and Liane Moriarty (Big Little Lies) will appreciate the complex relationships and the emotional inner lives of women in crisis. A special thank you to Atria and NetGalley for an early reading copy.
“I dare you not to read Randy Susan Meyers’ The Widow of Wall Street in one big gulp. What is it like to be married to a disgraced wolf of Wall Street, and how do you survive the aftermath of a scandal? Meyers answers the question with a fascinating page turner that somehow manages both to indict and absolve.” - Melanie Benjamin, New York Times Bestselling author of The Swans of Fifth Avenue.
“I’ll be honest: High finance isn’t my thing and I worried I wouldn’t be able to get into The Widow of Wall Street. How wrong I was! With all the suspense of a thriller, The Widow of Wall Street quickly pulled me into the story and didn’t let me go until the last page. Randy Susan Meyers made me feel, on a visceral level, the giddiness of Phoebe and Jake’s rise to power and the mounting panic as their lives and marriage began to crumble. Brilliantly executed and beautifully written, The Widow of Wall Street should have wide appeal.” - Diane Chamberlain, USA Today Bestselling Author of Pretending to Dance.
"Randy Susan Meyers' new novel explores the consequence of deception within a marriage driven by ambition and greed. The Widow of Wall Street is full of robust characters, scandal, and heartbreak. A riveting and engrossing read that I finished in one greedy gulp.”
- Alyson Richman, bestselling author of The Lost Wife.
About the Author
Randy Susan Meyers is the bestselling author of Accidents of Marriage, The Comfort of Lies, and The Murderer’s Daughters. Her books have twice been finalists for the Mass Book Award and named “Must Read Books” by the Massachusetts Center for the Book.
She lives with her husband in Boston, where she teaches writing at the Grub Street Writers’ Center. Read More