A sophisticated page-turner about a wealthy New York family embroiled in a financial scandal with cataclysmic consequences. Now that he’s married to Merrill Darling, daughter of billionaire financier Carter Darling, attorney Paul Ross has grown accustomed to New York society and all of its luxuries: a Park Avenue apartment, weekends in the Hamptons, bespoke suits. When Paul loses his job, Carter offers him the chance to head the legal team at his hedge fund. Thrilled with his good fortune in the midst of the worst financial downturn since the Great Depression, Paul accepts the position.
But Paul’s luck is about to shift: a tragic event catapults the Darling family into the media spotlight, a regulatory investigation, and a red-hot scandal with enormous implications for everyone involved. Suddenly, Paul must decide where his loyalties lie—will he save himself while betraying his wife and in-laws or protect the family business at all costs?
Cristina Alger’s glittering debut novel interweaves the narratives of the Darling family, two eager SEC attorneys, and a team of journalists all racing to uncover—or cover up—the truth. With echoes of a fictional Too Big to Fail and the novels of Dominick Dunne, The Darlings offers an irresistible glimpse into the highest echelons of New York society—a world seldom seen by outsiders—and a fast-paced thriller of epic proportions.
“Alger’s novel is a realist fiction that marks the revival of the finance novel today.”
–LA Review of Books
“Two parts Too Big to Fail, one part The Devil Wears Prada, Alger’s debut is taut and compelling….Alger expertly evokes both sympathy and contempt for her characters and writes with a polished ease, telling the story of our time (or a particular glittery, corrupt corner of our time) with a mix of ruthlessness and sensitivity.”
“Probably the most compulsively readable fiction to come out of the Wall Steet financial scandal so far …Alger knows the ins and outs of both Wall Street and an upscale NYC lifestyle, nailing all the details, from the plush, hushed atmosphere of high-end law firms to the right tennis togs for a “casual” weekend in the Hamptons. Delicious reading.”
“Alger introduces us to flawed but sympathetically drawn characters and depicts socialite parties, luscious dinners, exquisite clothes, and holidays in the Hamptons. …A financial thriller somewhere between the novels of Dominick Dunne (though not as flippant) and Tom Wolfe’s The Bonfire of the Vanities (though not as serious).”
“Cristina Alger is so good, you just know she’s an inside trader–as intimately familiar with the inner workings of Wall Street investment banks as she is with haute Manhattan social life. She’s also a gifted storyteller. The Darlings is an utterly compelling novel, as knowing about family as it is about money and social status, and may be the best literary product of the financial crisis to date.”
–Jay McInerney, New York Times bestselling author of The Good Life
“For those who have only gazed up at the palatial residences of Manhattan, this is a glimpse from the penthouse down, where ‘millions’ isn’t shorthand for ‘unimaginable wealth’ but a rather modest bank balance. In her engaging and assured debut, Cristina Alger weaves a complex thriller from this world, as a Wall Street scandal threatens to devastate a family far more accustomed to charity galas than to chats with the feds.”
–Tom Rachman, New York Times bestselling author of The Imperfectionists
“Cristina Alger’s debut novel offers a fresh and modern glimpse into New York’s high society. I was hooked from page one.”
–Lauren Weisberger, New York Times bestselling author of Last Night at the Chateau Marmont
“Cristina Alger has written a racing, vivid, multi-vocal chronicle of the new gilded age, with equal shades of Jay McInerney and Bernie Madoff. Start reading it and in three hundred pages or so you’ll feel like a consummate New York insider, too.”
–Charles Finch, author of A Burial at Sea
“A rare, glittering glimpse into Manhattan’s banks, bedrooms, and private clubs, a material and psychological world rendered with extraordinary detail. A smart, gripping tale… complex and mesmerizing.”
–Sara Houghteling, author of Pictures at an Exhibition