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Dear Money | [Martha McPhee]

Dear Money

India Palmer, living the cash-strapped existence of the writer, is visiting wealthy friends in Maine when a yellow biplane swoops down from the clear blue sky to bring a stranger into her life who will change everything. The stranger is Win Johns, a swaggering and intellectually bored trader of mortgage-backed securities.
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Publisher's Summary

In this Pygmalion tale of a novelist turned bond trader, Martha McPhee brings to life the greed and riotous wealth of New York during the heady days of the second gilded age.

India Palmer, living the cash-strapped existence of the writer, is visiting wealthy friends in Maine when a yellow biplane swoops down from the clear blue sky to bring a stranger into her life who will change everything. The stranger is Win Johns, a swaggering and intellectually bored trader of mortgage-backed securities. Charmed by India's intelligence, humor, and inquisitive nature, and aware of her near-desperate financial situation, Win poses a proposition: "Give me eighteen months and I'll make you a world-class bond trader." Shedding her artist's life with surprising ease, India embarks on a raucous ride to the top of the income chain, leveraging herself with crumbling real estate, never once looking back…or does she?

With a light-handed irony that is by turns as measured as Claire Messud's and as biting as Tom Wolfe's, Martha McPhee tells the classic American story of people reinventing themselves, unaware of the price they must pay for their transformation.

©2010 Martha McPhee (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

What the Critics Say

“Although no one can profess to comprehend the complexities of the current economic quagmire, McPhee dishes its jargon with all the aplomb of someone who TiVos CNBC. Delivering virulent social satire with a velvet, humanitarian touch, McPhee’s timely send-up deftly parodies the fallout from misplaced priorities.” (Booklist)

“Martha McPhee's fourth novel wouldn't be so funny if it didn't ring so true….McPhee has a lot of fun with a couple of archetypes—a Pygmalion transformation of the novelist into a financial high roller and a ‘city mouse/country mouse’ exchange of ambitions—but what makes this novel work so well is that India continues to engage the reader's empathy, even affection, as she forsakes literary high-mindedness for filthy lucre.” (Kirkus Reviews)

“I can’t remember the last time I couldn’t put a book down. I read Dear Money in cars, in waiting rooms, even at a rest stop on the turnpike. I read whole passages out loud to my husband. Martha McPhee is a wickedly good social observer, a writer of beautiful, lyrical prose, and a consummate storyteller. This is a very smart novel that unpacks small surprises and pleasures on every single page.” (Dani Shapiro, author of Black & White)

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    Jullie Plover, WI, United States 10-24-10
    Jullie Plover, WI, United States 10-24-10
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    "Liked the story but not the narrator"

    The story was good, but the narrator's voice was difficult to listen to, resulting that I could only listen to this story in short intervals.

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