Black Fridays

Black Fridays

by Michael Sears
4.3 15


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Black Fridays by Michael Sears

One of Booklist's "Year's Best Crime Novels"

After two years in federal prison, Jason Stafford is no longer welcome on Wall Street. But due to his financial crime expertise, one firm wants him to quietly look for irregularities in the books of one of their junior traders, whose body was just pulled from the Long Island Sound.

Raising an autistic five-year-old alone, Stafford can’t refuse the lucrative offer. The job is supposed to last two weeks, tops. But soon he’s facing threats and intimidation, and more people are dying. Stafford must fight for his life—while struggling to save his son from a different kind of danger…

Nominated for the Edgar® Award for Best First Novel

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780399158667
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 09/18/2012
Series: Jason Stafford Series , #1
Pages: 352
Product dimensions: 6.32(w) x 9.16(h) x 1.16(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Michael Sears spent more than twenty years on Wall Street, rising to the position of managing director in the bond trading and underwriting divisions of Paine Webber and, later, Jefferies & Company, before leaving the business in 2005. He lives in Sea Cliff, New York, with his wife, artist Barbara Segal, and is at work on a new novel featuring Jason Stafford and his son. 

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Black Fridays 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 15 reviews.
ABookAWeekES More than 1 year ago
Jason Stafford has nothing. He was once a top Wall Street trader living the high life, but after a getting in over his head with falsified profits and fraudulent trades, he finds himself at the end of a two year jail sentence with no money, an estranged ex-wife who has his only son, and seemingly no future job opportunities. You can imagine his surprise when the CEO of a large Wall Street firm asks Jason to investigate the trades of a junior trader who recently died in a boating accident. Intrigued by the prospect to work in his old environment and desperate for any kind of income, Jason accepts. As he begins to reclaim his professional dignity, Jason also is determined to gain custody from his alcoholic ex-wife. Jason Jr., nicknamed "the Kid", has been diagnosed with autism and is not getting the care he needs. With his ex just as unstable as his son, Jason is shocked to learn that the Kid is locked in a room all day. Risking his parole, Jason flies to Louisiana to retrieve his son. When he returns to New York, son in tow, Jason is forced to reevaluate his life, and learn to live with his unique son. Meanwhile, Jason's investigation is revealing a larger conspiracy than even he expected. As he digs deeper into the web of fraud he attracts the attention of Wall Streets power players as well as agents from the FBI. When he uncovers a system that will certainly rock the entire financial institution, Jason must decide what to do with the information. If he makes the wrong decision, it could cost him his life. With this excellent debut novel, author Michael Sears enters the thriller genre with a bang. His knowledge of Wall Street brings a unique perspective to the story. This timely tale of financial deceit flows at a perfect pace, never getting bogged down in the details that are presented. While the thriller side of the story is entertaining, it is the father-son relationship that really places the novel on a higher level. Jason's adjustment to becoming the guardian of his autistic son is the secret to this story's success. Sears subtly crafts the two characters, making the reader truly care about the son and root for the Father's redemption. I will admit that the secondary characters were not as strongly conceived as Jason and the Kid, but the focus on the two far outweighed the lack of development in the others. Overall, "Black Fridays" is a thriller with heart that I highly recommend.
nurse97 More than 1 year ago
Very good book! Cant wait for his next one.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I would highly recommend this book. It kept my interest and the characters evolved from beginning to end.
Jules3 More than 1 year ago
What an excellent book!! I cannot wait for the next one!! I learned so much about autism as well. I found it way more interesting than the Wall Street stuff. :)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great book
3no7 More than 1 year ago
If you are interested in fiction books that have characters with autism, check out books by Michael Seers. Start with the first one "Black Fridays." The main character is trying to get custody of his five-year old son with autism. At the same time he is entangled in Wall Street wrong doings, cover-ups, and unexplained deaths. It provides an interesting picture of a parent of a child with autism as both parent and child learn about each other in the context of a “mainstream” financial thriller.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
HuntersMom More than 1 year ago
Excellent book.   A very interesting read.
cs More than 1 year ago
Temptation, corruption, consipracy, and dead bodies. Just another day on Wall Street. Debut novel. Murder, corruption, finances, conspiracy, dead bodies, hedge funds, secret codes, the headiness of power, temptation. A man in the wrong place at the wrong time, trying to redeem his life. Reads real, thanks to investment industry veteran Sears. Makes me wonder what I would do in his shoes. The story made my head spin. And, of course, love the main character’s last name. – Clay Stafford, author and founder of Killer Nashville
48GIRL More than 1 year ago
Very good read. A lot like a John Grisham book. Enjoyed it very much!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Man_Of_La_Book_Dot_Com More than 1 year ago
Black Fri­days by Michael Sears is a novel which cap­i­tal­izes on the author’s Wall Street expe­ri­ence pro­vid­ing inter­est­ing insights on finan­cials capers. This is a first book by Mr. Sears and seems to be the first of a series. Jason Stafford has spent the past two years in jail after being caught run­ning a Wall Street scam. Now the unem­ploy­able trader is try­ing to put his life back together. A Wall Street firm has hired him to inves­ti­gate some issues which a junior trader might have had before he acci­den­tally died – but Jason might take on more than he can chew and might risk his life in the process. His only moti­va­tion to con­tinue is his only son “The Kid” who is autis­tic and needs a lot of atten­tion which money can help bring about. Black Fri­days by Michael Sears is a novel about finan­cial schemes, mur­der and greed but mostly about the mean­ing of father­hood. While I couldn’t begin to under­stand the com­plex­ity of the scam which Jason Stafford, the pro­tag­o­nist, pulled over his Wall Street bosses, I liked the other aspects of this book. Jason has a son which he is fight­ing for. After spend­ing a cou­ple of years in jail Jason cer­tainly wasn’t up for the “Father of the Year” award, but nei­ther was his white trash ex-wife, her fix­a­tion with abu­sive men and her way of deal­ing with autism (lock­ing the kid in a room at his grandmother’s house so he won’t hurt himself). I enjoyed the finan­cial aspect of the book and the moti­va­tion of the father to come back into an indus­try which deplores him (he got caught and took a few peo­ple with him on the way down), but I thought that the touch­ing rela­tion­ship between father and son gave the book unex­pected strength which turned the novel from a run of the mill book into a mem­o­rable one. I also liked the way Jason was drawn; he is by no means a good guy and cer­tainly not a moral char­ac­ter. After all, Jason doesn’t hes­i­tate steal­ing a few hun­dred thou­sand dol­lars here and there and is try­ing to jus­tify it through­out the book. The pro­tag­o­nist has no remorse, only that he got caught and missed two years with his son. Black Fri­days is an enjoy­able thriller, it is fast paced and inter­est­ing. Jason might be the only well devel­oped char­ac­ter in the book, but the novel still stands on its own strength. A won­der­ful debut for Mr. Sears and I’m look­ing for­ward to more books about Jason and his son.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Everybody go to 'blac' without the k!