This is Rage: A Novel of Silicon Valley and Other Madness

This is Rage: A Novel of Silicon Valley and Other Madness

by Ken Goldstein


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781611880717
Publisher: Story Plant
Publication date: 10/08/2013
Pages: 530
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 1.50(d)

About the Author

Ken Goldstein advises a number of start-ups and established corporations in technology, entertainment, media, and e-commerce. He served as Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of SHOP.COM, a market leader in online consumer commerce acquired by Market America. He previously served as executive vice president and managing director of Disney Online, and as vice president of entertainment at Broderbund Software. Earlier in his career, he developed computer games for Philips Interactive Media and Cinemaware Corporation, and also worked as a television executive. He is active in children's welfare issues and has served on the boards of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Greater Los Angeles, Hathaway-Sycamores Child and Family Services, and Full Circle Programs, and is currently actively in local government. He speaks and teaches frequently on topics of management, leadership, and creative destruction. He and his wife Shelley, who teaches English as a Second Language, make their home in Southern California. He received his BA in Theater Studies and Philosophy from Yale. THIS IS RAGE is his first novel.

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This is Rage: A Novel of Silicon Valley and Other Madness 3.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 10 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Gripping insider's look into the often secret world of start-ups, mergers & acquisitions .  From the very start, Ken Goldstein captivates you with his complex story of kidnapping, ruthless board members, self-serving politicians and unlikely heroes -- keeping you riveted until the very  end.    The novel is both educational and suspenseful -  peppered with wit, sarcasm and hope.   For anyone that has worked in Corporate America in the last 15 years, you've met the characters, you've watched them on TV, heard them on radio or read about them in the media.    The characters are real, the story feels real.   But what Ken has done so brilliantly, was to tap into the true emotion felt by almost every worker in America ever affected by big business.   You won't be able to put this book down. While this is his debut novel, I'm sure it won't be his last.   Well done, Mr. Goldstein!              
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A very good read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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Margitte More than 1 year ago
Five stars: When Bog Boys with Big Money clash with Small Boys with Small Voices - it gets ugly This is such a profound, evocative, thought-provoking novel, that it is difficult to just dot down a few thoughts on it. Why I wanted to read it? Because if America coughs, the rest of the world gets pneumonia, and I wanted to know how it happens. What can happen if two disgruntled IT people, two cousins named Dennis Swerlow and Sam Kisinski, decides to kidnap one of the biggest players in Silicon Valley, Daniel Steyer, and hold him for ransom. Not to take the money and run, but to start their own company?  As things work in the modern world, it took seconds for several billionaire egomaniacs, aspiring politicians, and down and out journalists to try and cash in on the situation. What looked like heroics was nothing short of attempts to score like vultures from the situation. Everything went magnificently wrong. The kidnappers ended up with the two up and coming CEOs, Stepen J. Finkelman and Calvin Choy, two star CEO's of Envisionlink as hostages, with the banker, Charles McFrank,dead. The FBI agent is unable to do his job. Feisty, street-smart Congresswoman Payne gets in on the action, raining on everyone's parade. The parade being a private Boeing which serves as the hostage hold. Employees walk out when rumors of a merger between Envisionlink and Atom Heart Entertainment start circulating. The Street (Wall Street) starts an avalanche of stones gathering no moss at a unprecedented rate, thundering down into a possible depression, fueling the fires and ripping several hidden agendas open. The only common factor, trying to keep hold of the strongs, are the internet radio freak, Kimo Balthazer.  He was all mouth, no camera candy, but he could bottle wrath and sell it in a rainbow of flavors. He’s a mud scavenger. He goes where the mud is and makes misery his triumph. Kimo, with his This is Rage' show will throw a cat in a mouse nest, understanding the soul of America, the workers who make it happen. He creates chaos which he will have to solve. "Management was in it for themselves, job security was as ancient a myth as the protective rule of the Roman Empire, C-level executives bought weekend ranches while employees lost their leveraged homes, and job engagement was limited to a tiny guild of decision-makers invited with invisible whispers to join the inner circle. It may well have been a self-selecting set of participants crying foul, but the malaise was inescapable. Employees were afraid. They felt helpless. They were angry." All Kimo wants is the US Constitution and its Bill of Rights uniting with his own Merger Bill of Rights. When people go to the ice cream shop, they usually pick something reliable like strawberry or chocolate chip, but every now and again a flavor of the day catches their fancy and they just don’t know why they are devouring bubblegum swirl. The problem with Mr. Balthazer’s bubblegum swirl is that it is unexpectedly influential—it is getting under people’s skin like a narcotic and causing them to make poor decisions." My comments: An exhausting, but absolutely brilliant book. How it will resonate in the American psyche, or the rest of the world's, begs to be seen. The author's background knowledge of Big Boys with Big Money and their counterpart the Small Boys with the Small Voices is masterfully addressed in this crime thriller. In the end, the old cliché is confirmed: the difference between a Communist and a Capitalist is a fat bank account with a noble fiduciary duty all over the ambitious journey where the common man, a few billion of the world's inhabitants, are caught in the cross-fire. This big challenge needs a big champion. But the most sober thought for me is: while we all nobly eek out honest reviews for masterfully writing like this, doing it for free, someone else, the High Tech ‘Masters of the Universe, is making money from the algorithms on our computers. After all, everything is for sale, keyword for keyword, in Silicon Valley, and nothing goes by unnoticed or untraceable, with privacy being only the last noble aspiration of a dying brain ... I recommend this action thriller debut novel to everyone who needs to know the contemporary world we are living in today. I agree, Ken Goldstein's book is smart, insightful and engaging. It enlightens while it entertains. He is one of those authors who really knows what he is talking about. Brilliant writing! Brilliant story. Really a contemporary must-read!
Dawana More than 1 year ago
If you like long drawn out stories this one is for you. It should have been a short story. It has lot of wall street and computer tech phases that unless you work in that field will go over your head. Got to read when you can't sleep, puts you to sleep in a hurry.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
No need to buy the book now that the same rude plot spoilers have ruined another book by telling the entire story in their so called review. Please bn, do something to these plot spoilers and stop them from telling everything in their posts.
DiiMI More than 1 year ago
When a plan to kidnap and ransom the return of a powerful corporate money maker goes awry, the two bumbling kidnappers find their hands full when they end up with the co-CEOs of one of Silicon Valley’s shining star software companies. Meanwhile, a has been radio talk show host who has insulted and cursed his way out of the last in a long line of opportunities, struggles to redeem himself on the internet, if only for his own sanity. Through an act of fate, or just a case of being in the right place at the right time, Kimo Balthazar finds his ‘on the air’ resurrection for his show, “this is Rage,” when he latches on to the kidnapping and its impact on the economy, the Valley, but mostly for the common man. Whether playing for the crowds or actually having struck a nerve with his followers, Kimo’s voice is heard and he is recruited to communicate with the kidnappers, who have become the working man’s heroes, as they hold the CEOs hostage in a hospital. Will he be able to strike a deal with the kidnappers, who are only looking for a break, looking for a way to create their own legendary tech company. Why hasn’t the Co-CEOs’ corporation stepped forward to pay the ransom? Is there a better deal on the table, one that will make money for the board? What about the kidnap victims? Are they on their own? This is Rage by Ken Goldstein is a fascinating and dark look into the underbelly of life in the dog-eat-dog world of high-tech loyalties, deceits and the seduction of money and power that permeates the world of those with clout. It also embraces the rebel in us all through Kimo, proving that one voice can be heard, whether we like what its saying or not. Mr. Goldstein’s ability to set the mood of each scene as it played out felt vividly realistic, as did the dialogue and attitude of each of the many characters we meet. Were some clichéd? Possibly, but together, the entertainment value of This is Rage soared for me! Did I like this? Oh YES! This is fast-paced intrigue, tempered by some comic relief in the form of the two computer geeks turned kidnappers. The star of this novel is Kimo, coarse, brash, crude and opinionated, he was the most believable of all of the characters! Is what happened in This is Rage real corporate back-stabbing and power-playing? Seriously, I don’t know, but it was entertaining, eye-opening and highly probable. I do know I can highly recommend This is Rage as a great read! An ARC edition was provided by The Story Plant in exchange for my honest review. I do not know the author, I know nothing about high level corporate machinations, but I do know when I've liked what I've read!
literarymuseVC More than 1 year ago
Once upon a time employers and employees believed they were working as a dedicated team. Each depended on and was loyal to the other in good and bad financial times. But somehow the plot went awry when profits, sales, stock values, mergers, and executive privilege replaced the security of united effort. Now lives are so much dross when the schemes for more money prevail! Sound like a fairy tale, a piece of contemporary fiction? It is and it isn’t – welcome to the world of Silicon Valley, a world of madness gone even more awry than anyone could believe possible! The real story starts out with an evening’s party attended by Silicon valley owners, investors, and underlings close to the top. The talk is all about profit margins, a potential merger, and more, talks headed by those who think they know it all about how to make companies profit and manipulate publicity so that the stock market follows their lead. But all of that is about to implode as two kidnappers arrive, inadvertently kill one man and kidnap two owners of a smaller company that is on the down side of being productive and therefore financially viable. The ransom is at first money which is totally rejected by the financiers and the FBI, whose one reluctant agent has been assigned the task of freeing the victims. But upon realizing this, the victims contrive a plan to actually benefit the kidnappers financially and free all concerned. Enter Kimo Balthazar, a renegade talk show host who’s been fired multiple times from multiple stations, a host who can’t find another station to employ him. He now turns into an Internet talk show host and picks up on the kidnapping story and the real dope on how Silicon Valley CEOs operate. Interviews with these higher-ups and even a female Congresswoman follow in which their desperate attempts to manipulate the public as usual fail miserably, resulting in a massive walkout of Silicon Valley employees. These are men and women who are sick and tired of never being able to communicate with the executives, who know they will be let go with future mergers, who know they are expendable and are demanding change – NOW! While the plot contains ample financial lingo that might be beyond most reader’s intellectual acumen, this information and the descriptions that are provided to educate the reader don’t detract from a tense, intelligent, realistic and frightening series of events that rivet the reader on every page. No, you can’t predict where it’s going initially but it’s worth every page read to see the surprising outcome, a Bill of Rights for the “little man and woman” in the intensifying battle for decent consideration and truth. One might add, the battle, as well as the outcome, are a microcosm for much of what goes on in many different avenues of corporate America! Ken Goldstein knows his facts and also is a skillful writer who has written a novel that deserves the attention of business, government, workers, employers, CEOs – everyone that keeps the economic wheel of America moving for supposedly the benefit of all! Outstanding business and thriller fiction! Highly recommended!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You do