The Garden of Betrayal
Knopf, Aug 3 2010, $24.95
In 2003, three men kidnap twelve year old Kyle Wallace off the streets of Manhattan. Seven years later his parents and sister remain grief-stricken due to their loss lacking any closure as nothing has come of what happened to the boy.
Kyle’s father oil analyst Mark Wallace is considered an energy guru on Wall St. However, he finds the recent international scene disturbing. In the Baltic terrorists blow up the pipeline that delivered oil from Russia to Germany. He meets Theresa Roxas who gives Mark information on the Saudis oil reserve that she apparently received form a US senator. Mark’s friend hedge-fund player Alex Coleman obtained the same data, but he is found dead in his bathtub. Meanwhile NYPD detective Reggie Kinnard continues when he can to work the now cold case of Kyle’s abduction; recently he has begin to link the snatch to Mark’s work.
The Garden of Betrayal is an exhilarating financial international thriller that never decides between a family drama and a conspiracy novel. The insight into the finance world is clever especially the brilliant setup that looks like a class in Advanced International Finance 401; while the grieving Wallace trio comes across as genuine. Although the convergence of the two subplots occurs too early, which leaves a long denouement that feels padded; sub-genre fans will appreciate Lee Vance’s thriller (see Restitution).