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The Widow of Wall Street: A Novel

The Widow of Wall Street: A Novel

by Randy Susan Meyers

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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 recognizes fire in Jake Pierce’s belly from the moment they meet as teenagers. As he creates a financial dynasty, she trusts him


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 recognizes 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 her husband’s triumph and vast reach rests on an elaborate Ponzi scheme her world unravels. As Jake’s crime is uncovered, the world obsesses about Phoebe. Did she know her life was fabricated by fraud? Was she his accomplice?

While Jake is trapped in the web of his deceit, Phoebe is caught in an unbearable choice. Her children refuse to see her if she remains at their father’s side, but abandoning him 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 survive and then redefine her life as her world crumbles.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Meyers (The Murderer’s Daughter) explores the dynamics of the 20th-century bedroom and boardroom in this novel. Phoebe and Jake meet in high school, quickly falling in love despite her mother’s concerns that Phoebe is moving too fast. As they move through college and the early years of their careers, Jake’s unbridled ambition brings wealth and comfort, but at a cost: Jake is needy and manipulative, demanding that Phoebe’s goals take a backseat from the very early days of their relationship. Unwilling to acknowledge his wife’s own ambition (to care for others, rather than earn a profit), Jake is blinded to all but the careful curation of a life he always dreamed of, making pawns of everything around him in order to do it. It’s only too late that Phoebe learns the brokerage and investment firm that she and Jake have been building for decades was little more than a con, landing him in prison and leaving her picking up the pieces of a life she’d thought was secure. Carefully written to gradually expose the emotional hold Jake builds over his wife, the novel is an engaging and sharp reflection of the rapid changes in marital dynamics over the course of the 20th century, as well as a cautionary tale about the dangers and allure of ambition in the heyday of Wall Street. (Apr.)
“Meyers paints a brutal, revealing tale of a woman with everything to lose."
The Prosen People Jewish Book Council
“If you enjoy dark fiction about family relationships and deception, keep an eye out for a new novel coming out this April from bestselling author Randy Susan Meyers. The Widow of Wall Street opens in 2009 with a visit to the Ray Brook Federal Correctional Institution, where Phoebe Pierce’s husband, Jake, is imprisoned on fraud charges following the discovery of the elaborate Ponzi scheme upon which he built their fortune. The novel follows Phoebe from the beginnings of her relationship with Jake in the summer of 1960 through the present day, living with her husband’s notoriety and the world’s censure and suspicion, reminding readers with that sparkly city skyline that all that glitters is not gold.”

Praise for Accidents of Marriage:
"This novel's unsparing look at emotional abuse and its devastating consequences gives it gravity and bite, while a glimpse into a physically damaged mind both surprises and fascinates."
Boston Globe
Praise for The Comfort of Lies:

“Randy Susan Meyers’s second novel is sharp and biting, and sometimes wickedly funny when the author skewers Boston’s class and neighborhood dividing lines, but it has a lot of heart, too.”

"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 Barbara Delinsky, Amy Hatvany, and Jodi Picoult will want to add Meyers to their to-read list."
Star Tribune
"A deft exploration of the borders of abuse and the aftermath of tragedy, the triumphs and disappointments of recovery, and the possibilities of faith and forgiveness."
Concord Monitor
"Meyers writes compellingly; Maddy’s recovery is detailed and wrenching, as are vivid portraits of the children’s reactions to their family’s turmoil."
Liane Moriarty
"Many books are an absolute pleasure to read, but slip straight from your mind. Accidents of Marriage is one of those rare novels that is both unputdownable and unforgettable. I just loved it, and I'll now read everything Randy Susan Meyers writes."
#1 New York Times bestselling author of Orphan Train - Christina Baker Kline
"Maddy and Ben have a complicated marriage. He’s got anger issues; she is messy and forgetful. One fateful morning these character traits clash – with devastating consequences. In this beautifully written novel, Randy Susan Meyers traces how the repercussions of a car accident expose fissures and long-held resentments from the past that force these characters to question everything. This is a wise and penetrating book.”
New York Times bestselling author of Tempting Fate - Jane Green
"An incredibly accomplished and satisfying read, with an important message."
New York Times bestselling author of Those Who Save Us - Jenna Blum
"I read Accidents of Marriage in one day. Like Meyers' first two novels, this one—about a family paying a high price for rage and trying to reknit itself in the aftermath of the unthinkable—is compulsive reading. It's amazing how warm Meyers' writing is even as her stories grip you by the hand and don't let go."
New York Times bestselling author of The Lace Reader - Brunonia Barry
"With the heart of a novelist and the tenacity of an investigative journalist, Meyers flawlessly depicts the evolution and consequences of emotional abuse. A master of perspective with an uncanny understanding of human nature, she has managed to make us empathize with every member of this damaged family. This is an important story, one I’ll be thinking about for a long time."
author of Life Drawing - Robin Black
"Randy Susan Meyers is a genius of the human heart, and Accidents of Marriage is a profound education on the complexities of love, imperfection, damage, and responsibility. You'll feel as though a magically insightful friend is sharing the behind-the-scenes secrets of a family you may well know. She tells it like it is. No sugar-coating here, only truth in all its compelling beauty and might."
The Forever Marriage - Ann Bauer
"Every marriage has its secret deals and compromises. In Accidents of Marriage, Randy Susan Meyers explores the vast complexity of this bond and lays out how passion, allegiance and love can go terribly wrong. She gives us characters we root for, even when they’re at odds, and she asks the questions:What is forgivable? When does a marriage become too broken to fix? With wisdom, humor and great compassion, Meyers answers in a story you won’t soon forget."
author of Safe With Me - Amy Hatvany
"A bold and poignant look into the complicated, slippery world of what constitutes emotional abuse, Accidents of Marriage explores what happens when tragic circumstance forces one family to reexamine the dysfunctional dynamics that have long-defined them. Meyers deftly pulled me in to this story from the first page, tying me to its tender and fearless heartbeat, and didn't let me go until the extremely satisfying end."
author of Professor Cromer Learns to Read: A Couple's New Life after Brain Injury - Janet Cromer
"The intertwined traumas of emotional abuse and brain injury careen through every family member in this disturbing and deeply insightful story. Meyers captures the necessity and complexity of excavating the truth as the foundation of life moving forward."
J. Courtney Sullivan
“I devoured this big-hearted story of three women whose lives collide years after a baby is put up for adoption.”
Tayari Jones
“With a vision that is generous, yet unsentimental, a testimony to the healing power of the truth.”
LA Times
Praise for The Murderer’s Daughters:

“All too believable and heartbreaking.”

The Denver Post
“Unshakable truths at every turn. ”
Massachusetts Center for the Book
“The Murderer’s Daughters will have you enraptured and wanting more.”
Diane Chamberlain
“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.”
Alyson Richman
"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.”
Melanie Benjamin
Praise for The Widow of Wall Street:

“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.”

Library Journal
Phoebe and Jake fell in love when they were teens and married young. Jake, having a knack for numbers, slowly built himself up in the financial industry, creating a dynasty by the time he was an adult. He, Phoebe, and their two children never want for anything. However, as it turns out, Jake has been supporting his family under the shroud of an elaborate Ponzi scheme that went on for much longer than he thought possible. Everyone's world unravels as he is discovered, leaving Phoebe to decide if she should stand by him for better or worse—even if that means leaving their children. Meyers (Accidents of Marriage) once again pulls the reader into an tangled marriage, this time through the lens of the financial world. Full of deceit, scandal, and guilt, her novel expertly explores how rising to the top only to hit rock bottom affects a family. The consequences will leave readers reeling, as Phoebe struggles to understand Jake's reasons and redefine her life in the aftermath. VERDICT The perfect read for women's fiction lovers with an interest in finance. [See Prepub Alert, 10/31/16.]—Erin Holt, Williamson Cty. P.L., Franklin, TN
Kirkus Reviews
Meyers explores the troubled relationship between a couple during the husband's rise to riches and subsequent disgrace in a novel that mirrors the story of jailed financier Bernard Madoff and his broken family.Phoebe and Jake have been together since their teens, and when Phoebe—as a young college student—becomes pregnant by one of her professors, she makes Jake think it's his child and they marry following a miscarriage. Jake then launches a legitimate brokerage, but his big moneymaker is something he calls The Club, a private investment company reserved exclusively for the well-heeled who measure up to his standards. The Club isn't exactly aboveboard: it's basically a Ponzi scheme and a way for Jake to skim large amounts of money from investors and line his own pockets while roping in more accounts. As Jake robs Peter to pay Paul, the story follows Phoebe's venture into motherhood with two children, Noah and Katie, and her metamorphosis into Jake's accomplice as he uses her to bring in more investors. This is a great read, even when the characters are shallow and self-absorbed. Phoebe comes across as a decent but clueless woman who wants to do the right thing but ends up ignoring all the signs that Jake's business isn't what it appears to be. The couple revels in their expensive lifestyle, with plates that cost more than many people make in a month and closets full of silk and cashmere. And while the journey Phoebe makes from pampered grand dame in a penthouse to humiliated pauper living hand to mouth is compelling, readers may find themselves skimming some of the more technical details of Jake's finances. The plot is hardly unique, but the author's skillful writing overcomes the "been there, read that" feeling. An engrossing emotional journey.

Product Details

Atria Books
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Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Meet 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.