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The Gravy Train

3.63  ·  Rating Details ·  307 Ratings  ·  36 Reviews
Finn Keane is a novice investment banker who helps an aging Chairman try to buy his company back, while the ruthless Wall Street sharks who drove it into bankruptcy do all they can to stop them so the Wall Streeters can carve it up for themselves.
Kindle Edition, 231 pages
Published (first published January 17th 2012)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 521)
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Jun 02, 2014 Larry rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Because my former career too often collided with Wall Street, I bought this book as a “test” to determine if I could be entertained by tales of financial skullduggery. (Also, the book itself was inexpensive.)

The plot was predictable…the just-out-of-MBA new kid, the greedy investment bankers, the wise old company founder and CEO, the not-too-smart son-in-law, the attorneys that screw up the deal, etc. (By the way, I wonder if there are any good and decent investment bankers? According to literatu
Jim A
Sep 01, 2014 Jim A rated it liked it
Pretty good book about the dirty deals, backstabbing and greed that is so prevalent with Wall Street's Mergers and Acquisitions departments.

The book becomes pretty predictable near the end and the end game itself was too abrupt for this to rate four stars.

Readers who are not familiar with, or don't want to research the financial terms used in this book, will probably find it tedious. It's not for everyone, for sure.
Feb 14, 2016 Lynn rated it it was ok
The only reason I read this is because it was a Kindle giveaway. Unless you're into the minutiae of Wall Street deal making, junk bonds, and bankruptcy, I would give this a pass. What could have been an early Grisham-like peak inside this world is instead an inch deep and nowhere near a mile wide. The characters are thinly drawn, the plot's direction is obvious, and the ending is unsatisfyingly clear-cut and abrupt.
Nov 12, 2015 Tulay rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyable financial thriller.

Thanks to Amazon found another author, enjoyed this story and will be reading all his books. Finn Keane is a recent business school graduate, his first job on Wall Street. Befriends with Nick Christanapoulas. Nick doesn't underestimate him in this seedy corporate merger.
Angelo Abdela
Oct 26, 2011 Angelo Abdela rated it it was amazing
This book shows the personalities that created the global financial meltdown. Read this to see them in action. Shane, the antagonist, is the quintessential greedy banker but is created as believable flesh and blood. The plot is crafty and interesting and the other characters are as lifelike as Shane. Great read.

This was written by a former investment banker who obviously understands the people who work on Wall
Street. He brings a realistic perspective on the flawed, yet human characters who, unf
Jan 03, 2016 Ian rated it it was ok
Really shoddy writing, but I live and breathe finance, so this sort of thing entertains me on a bus ride. Unless you already understand finance and want to zone out with a nice simple page turner, no reason to look into this one.
Rich Flood
Jan 16, 2015 Rich Flood rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
good short novel, interesting plot and details.

Probably helps to know a little about finance, but not really necessary to be enjoyable. Wrapped up just a tad quickly, but at least didn't leave me hanging.
Dick Black
Oct 26, 2011 Dick Black rated it it was amazing
A tense suspense novel with characters and a story up to par with his other works. This was billed as a novella, but it's long for that format so it reads like a novel, with similar character and story development. If you are a New Yorker or just love New York this is a book you'll enjoy, because the settings and detail on New York are wonderful. It also takes you inside the world of investment banking in a way even Bull Street doesn't. I would like to see more from these characters and hope the ...more
Ruan Viljoen
Aug 17, 2014 Ruan Viljoen rated it liked it
I've ready many David Lender books and this one is probably the weakest so far. There's not much meat to this book, the character development is just OK and the ending felt a bit rushed. I think people who enjoy Wall Street type thrillers may find the book OK, but not spectacular.
Trey Janicke
Quick read

Book was ok not good not bad. Could have expanded story and added earlier references to tie in better. Story was predictable
Madeline Lewis
Not bad

It is an entertaining novel. I would recommend it for easy reading. It has enough turns to keep your attention.
Kim (Wistfulskimmies Book Reviews)
I was lucky enough to receive a free copy of this book in order to review it. It is a suspense novel all about the cut throat world of buying and selling businesses on Wall Street.

I enjoyed this quite a bit although it took me a little while to get into it. I think that was more my lack of understanding of how wall street works than anything else though! I now have a much greater understanding.

The pace of the story went along at a fair clip and there was plenty going on and I never felt like the
Richard Diver
Oct 26, 2011 Richard Diver rated it it was amazing
I read this one rainy Sunday, all in one sitting. What a pleasure. It is a microcosm of Lender's Bull Street, a more involved story of crime and punishment on Wall Street. The Gravy Train is more a parable of good and evil, with characters who have depth and passion, in which a young investment banker and a retired chairman of a company befriend each other, then team up to stop a ruthless group of Wall Street sharks. You have an idea how it will turn out, but the surprises are still there, and t ...more
Greg Eldred
Sep 27, 2016 Greg Eldred rated it liked it
Good plot but was slow at times.
Oct 15, 2014 Jim rated it really liked it
If you're a fan of Grisham I think you will enjoy this novella from David Lender. You replace the young lawyer with a young investment broker and the jaded older lawyers with jaded investment brokers. Fast paced with plenty of insider information about the working of Wall Street (it won't make you feel good about your investment portfolio) propel this story. This novella clocks in at 170 pages and reads even shorter than that due to the pacing. I enjoyed it more than I expected and will look for ...more
Jul 18, 2014 Louis rated it did not like it
Stick with Investment Banking
Edward Chapman
Oct 26, 2011 Edward Chapman rated it it was amazing
Another winner from this new author, who clearly has legs. I also see he has a new one coming out and will look forward to that one, too. This is set on Wall Street in boom years, never specified, but it all comes to an abrupt end and the story heads into the second act after that. Young, inexperienced Finn meets aging Chairman Nick, meets gorgeous Cassie with a dark past, meets Jack Shane and his band of scheming Wall Street insiders. Good guys vs the thugs, with an unexpected series of twists ...more
George Tennet
Oct 26, 2011 George Tennet rated it it was amazing
A near-perfect little book that gets you under the skin of a young, earnest MBA grad who wants to make it on Wall Street, then gets clobbered by those he encounters there. While it turns into a sort of morality play, there is nothing pat or contrived about it. It has many charming moments in the relationships, including a romance, and it also will make you cringe at the avarice and brutality of the financial professionals who are the antagonists. An excellent book you will absolutely enjoy.
Geoffrey Summer
Jul 09, 2011 Geoffrey Summer rated it it was amazing
Excellent suspense story of Wall Street skulduggery that migrates to the world of the bankruptcy courts. Finn, the young protagonist, and Nick, the world-wise elderly Chairman, make a great team in taking on Jack Shane, the really nasty king of Wall Street and his henchmen to buy Nick's company back after Jack has done deals that teeter it into bankruptcy. This has page-turning drama, unique New York and Wall Street color, realistic characters and dialog and even a romance. Surprises, too.
Feb 21, 2016 Mariam rated it liked it
well written but it couldn't hold my attention.
Howard Nissan
Oct 25, 2011 Howard Nissan rated it it was amazing
A tightly written and smaller version of his Bull Street, but in some ways more engaging and with equal twists and surprises. This isn't hold onto your hat action, but a suspenseful book that builds to a great, surprising finale. Here, as in Bull Street, the author uses his knowledge of Wall Street and its personalities to create a realistic background for his story, one of growth, coming of age and renewal. Memorable characters.
Apr 04, 2012 Jane rated it liked it
I enjoyed this novella, and I envy the author for knowing enough about banking and finance to create a solid bsis for a plot. That said, the characters were all stereotypes of one form or another, the good guys were all good and the bad guys were all bad, and the outcome was predictable even for some like me who doesn't know beans about bankruptcy settlements.
May 13, 2014 Cyndy rated it really liked it
I am working my way through David Lender's books - out of order - oops! A wall street merger and acquisition thriller - an odd premise to me, but it works. I assumed competitiveness was over the top on wall street, but I didn't expect the level of ruthlessness that Lender presents here and in Bull Street. Definitely worth the read.
Jimmey Southern
Jul 20, 2011 Jimmey Southern rated it it was amazing
Great suspense novel of Wall Street. The little guy novice against the big machine. Young Finn befriends Nick, the elder Chairman of his client on his first deal. You root for the kid and the old man to win, but it's a realistic story of modern-day finance, so will they? Enjoy finding out.
James Swift
Jul 04, 2011 James Swift rated it it was amazing
Much different than Trojan Horse, but I loved it. Shady dealings in a hazy world of nasty hard-asses against a nice old man who teams up with the novice hero. This had me spinning with the twists at the end. Totally gripping story of boardroom/backroom power, money and sex.
George Harris
Aug 04, 2011 George Harris rated it it was amazing
An engrossing, quick read with involving characters and an interesting plot with some nice twists and turns. You will not figure it out until the end. It has well-drawn antagonists and a charming interplay between the kid and the old man. A little romance, too.
Cindy Godfrey
Aug 07, 2011 Cindy Godfrey rated it it was amazing
Really fun and suspenseful little book that grew on me the farther I got into it. The New York City ambiance is terrific. I love this guy's writing, characters and dialog. He is now 3 for 3 with me and I'm looking forward to more from him.
Al Likely
Jul 19, 2011 Al Likely rated it it was amazing
Great little book, in the same vein as his Bull Street. It's a two-sitting read, and paced well, so you want to get through it quickly. Good suspense, well-defined characters and interesting details on the finance game. Highly recommended.
Apr 06, 2013 Ron rated it liked it
A little far fetched but still good story about Wall Street investment banking and the ruthless, greedy characters that populate that business. Pretty technical at times and educational if you're into such things. I liked it.

Kindle book. (L)
Jun 13, 2013 Patrick rated it really liked it
It is more Wall Street 2 than Wall Street, but still fun to see a Wall Street jerk get his comeuppance. But I prefer the business novels of Ethan Cooper: Smooth in Meetings, Tom's Job, and A Trip at the Top.
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David Lender is the bestselling author of thrillers based on his over 25-year career as a Wall Street investment banker. He draws on an insider’s knowledge from his career in mergers and acquisitions with Merrill Lynch, Rothschild and Bank of America for the international settings, obsessively driven personalities and real-world financial intrigues of his novels. His plots reveal the egos and ruth ...more
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