Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Rather Violent for a Wall Street Stockbroker: The Trust by Norb Vonnegut

Grove O'Rourke, a Wall Street stockbroker, receives a call from his mentor, Palmer Kincaid. Palmer sounds shaky. He says he needs Grove's help. As usual, things are busy on Wall Street, before Grove can respond Palmer is dead. Gove travels to Charleston for the funeral and finds that Palmer has nominated him to be on the board of the Palmetto Foundation. Not only is this a chance to sit on the board of a well-financed foundation, but it's an opportunity for Grove to renew his acquaintance with Claire Kincaid, Palmer's daughter, but something don't seem quite right at the foundation, particularly a grant to a Catholic Charity that rescues abused children in the Philipines.

I started out liking this book very much. Grove is an engaging character and the setting in Charleston is lovely. However, I had some problems with the progress of the narrative. The plot is quite complex and the story slows down as we get all the players on the scene. Although the male characters are well done, I thought the female characters were stereotypes. Grove's boss, Katy Anders, and the FBI agent, Torres, are strident bitches. Claire is a rather anemic character who never really comes into focus for me, and Jojo is not believable.

The other problem I had with the book was violence. The first half was fine, but the second half is one violent incident after another; fingers being cut off, eyes gouged out, people suffocated by putting foam into their mouths. It's hard to buy a stockbroker as the hero of all this violent activity. However, it you can stand the violence, the plot is interesting and I loved the setting.

I reviewed this book for the Amazon Vine Program.