The Woman Who Stopped Traffic by Daniel Pembrey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
There is no doubt that Daniel Pembrey the author of The Woman Who Stopped Traffic is well informed about the beginning of the internet mania and the computer craze as well as the workings of Wall Street insofar as Start-Ups and IPO's go. He writes easily and authoritatively about these subjects, which is not always easy to do when communicating this information in a story plot. Since this story begins with taking the subject of this novel, Clamor.US, public to investors, it's important that the reader understands what is happening as well as knowing some basics about what social networks do with online patrons' information, and how they convince investors to put money into their businesses. Pembrey is very adept at setting up the reader with short, to the point passages on how these various entities work together as well as against each other to reach the goal of expanding business opportunities for owners and investors alike.
In the case of Chaos.US, which is modeled somewhat after Facebook, it has come to the attention of the chief characters in the book that they have a breach of security within their ranks, so a woman is brought in to supervise getting to the bottom of the problem before the Initial Public Offering date to prevent any holdups in taking the company public. Although Natalie Chevalier, the security expert, has some glitches in her past employment record she is highly qualified to do the job expected of her. Until the murders start. That detail brings with it more suspicion, distrust among employees and investors, and an overall sense that this business may never reach the stock exchange floor. I found this to be an intriguing subject and was interested from the start since I like reading about Wall Street and the way in which these start-ups get the money they need to become businesses like Amazon and the like. I haven't found many novels that deal with these subjects in such easy to understand terms.
The one problem I did have with this novel was keeping straight who was doing what to whom. I didn't develop an understanding of all the characters. Perhaps more character development would have helped; however, when it came down to understanding the end when all the loose ends were tied together, I was satisfied with the result.
I would recommend this book to anyone interested in the workings of both Wall Street and start-up businesses dealing in privacy issues. The extra bonus is there's a good mystery involved as well.
I received an ARC from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.
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