The Trust by Norb Vonnegut

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There’s enough novelty to this plot to set “The Trust” apart from garden-variety business thrillers...
-NY Times


"Mr. Vonnegut dreams up diabolically elegant business crimes, then sends smart-talking characters to follow the money. He draws upon his own Wall Street experience (with Morgan Stanley, among other employers) to provide the sound of insider acumen.... There's enough novelty to this plot to set "The Trust" apart from garden-variety business thrillers, the ones in which Bernard Madoff stand-ins run Ponzi schemes. Anyway, Mr. Vonnegut is just getting started." -The New York Times

Norb Vonnegut lends his unique insider's perspective and his darkly humorous writing to a fast-talking suspense thriller that takes readers inside the high-rolling world of global finance.

One sultry morning in Charleston, South Carolina, real estate magnate Palmer Kincaid's body washes ashore, the apparent victim of accidental drowning. Palmer's daughter calls Grove O'Rourke, stockbroker and hero of Top Producer, for help getting her family's affairs in order. Palmer was Grove's mentor and client, the guy who opened doors to a world beyond Charleston. Grove steps in as the interim head of the Palmetto Foundation, an organization Palmer created to encourage philanthropy.
Community foundations, like the Palmetto Foundation, are conduits. Philanthropists gift money to them and propose the ultimate beneficiaries. But in exchange for miscellaneous benefits-anonymity, investment services, and favorable tax treatment-donors lose absolute control. Once funds arrive, community foundations can do whatever they decide.
For years Palmer showed great sensitivity to his donors, honoring their wishes to funnel funds into the charities of their choice-his unspoken pledge-and it was this largesse which made him a respected pillar of the Charleston community. But after Grove authorizes a $25 million transfer requested by a priest from the Catholic Fund, he discovers something is terribly wrong. He gets a call from Biscuit Hughes, a lawyer representing the people of Fayetteville, North Carolina, against a new sex superstore in their town. Biscuit has traced the store's funding to a most unlikely source: the Catholic Fund.
Together, Grove and Biscuit launch an investigation into the fund, but the deeper they dig, the more evidence they find that the fund's money isn't being used to support the impoverished-it's going somewhere much more sinister. When someone close to him disappears and the FBI starts breathing down his neck, Grove knows he has to figure out who's pulling all the strings before the shadowy figure who will stop at nothing to keep the fund a secret gets to him.


About Norb Vonnegut

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Norb Vonnegut spent over two years at a money management firm in New York City, where he was a managing director responsible for equity and fixed income portfolios. He has also worked for Morgan Stanley's Private Wealth Management Division, Paine Webber, and Kidder, Peabody. He graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College and earned his MBA from Harvard Business School. Mel Foster has narrated over 150 audiobooks and has won several awards. Twice an Audie finalist for 1864: Lincoln at the Gates of History by Charles Bracelen Flood and Finding God in Unexpected Places by Philip Yancey, he won for the latter title. He has also won several AudioFile Earphones Awards. Best known for mysteries, Mel has also narrated classic authors such as Thoreau, Nabokov, and Whitman.
Published July 17, 2012 by Minotaur Books. 317 pages
Genres: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense, Literature & Fiction. Fiction
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NY Times

Above average
Reviewed by Janet Maslin on Jul 15 2012

There’s enough novelty to this plot to set “The Trust” apart from garden-variety business thrillers...

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