Snow Job: The Great Game – Just How Corrupt are Investment Bankers?

Sometimes you will read the prologue of a book and instantly know what the story is about and how it will end, with Snow Job however, reading this really gave nothing away.  I got the sense that someone was either suffering or going to suffer; that something tragic was going to unfold, but what it was and to whom, I could not say. 

Add to this the flowery, descriptive writing style, and I am ashamed to say, that I actually had to read the prologue twice in order to try and gain an idea of what was to come.  It also made me wonder whether I would struggle with the narrative throughout and whether it would, therefore, be a novel I would enjoy.

“…No matter how drunk, stoned, sick or tired you are, at six-thirty, you must be in the boardroom and take notes on the overnight updates.” (Page 3)

The Story of Snow Job: The Great Game

This is the thought that runs through Katya Kuznetsova’s head every morning as she prepares for yet another day as an investment banker at Lehman Brothers in London.  She understands that no matter how hard you may party, however bad you feel the next day, as soon as the markets open you need to be ready and raring to go; you need to be able to understand what has happened in the world whilst you were sleeping, how that will affect the stock market and then predict what will take place over the next 24 hours.  If you succeed there is an obscene amount of money to be made, if you fail…well failure just isn’t an option for Katya.

Unfortunately, it seems that not everyone sees Kayta’s potential and one morning, unsuspecting of her fate, she is called to a meeting with the HR Manager only to be told that they are letting her go with just three months pay, which they feel is a good redundancy package for her length of service. 

It seems that sleeping with the boss doesn’t give you job security after all.

Unable to focus, she wallows in her own self-pity for a number of days before gaining the courage to go and spend the evening with Richard, one of her closest friends who just so happens to be good-looking, partly French and extremely sympathetic to Katya’s current situation.  Within hours, he has convinced her moving on is the best cure.  He helps her to sub-let her swanky apartment in Chelsea and she agrees, albeit under duress to move into his tiny flat in the East End.  A place that no-one in her inner circle would ever dream of visiting, let alone living in.

Within weeks, and thanks to the helpful guidance of Richard, Katya finds herself being interviewed, hired and moving in Moscow to become a pivotal part of a finance company. 

Perhaps things are finally on the up.

It seems that life is only going to get better now that she has moved away from Lehman Brothers.  She is respected by those in charge, is earning exuberant money once again and seems to have caught the eye of a rather fetching Oligarch willing to flash his cash in order to gain her attention.

However, as we all know the grass is not always greener and a fate floor of most human beings is that we tend to look at things through rose-tinted glasses, especially when things are going well, which can only mean that at some point in the future everything is going to come crashing down.

Katya soon finds herself mixed up in a corrupt society full of the super-rich willing to pay anything to gain power over others, regardless of the cost to the average person.  However, it is not until Katya’s own world is affected that she even begins to show an ounce of concern and regret. 

Will Katya be able to change things in time?  Will she ever be able to forgive herself to what happens those she loves most? 

Our Thoughts on Snow Job: The Great Game

Initially, I was unsure whether I was going to enjoy this particular novel.  The prologue, as I have already mentioned, was confusing and therefore I was unsure what would come next.  However, within a couple of chapters, I was hooked. 

I have read many financial focused books, some fact some fiction, over recent years and I did wonder whether I would be reading a replicate of The Wolf of Wall Street, so it was refreshing to read a completely different take on the investment banking world.

At the end of Snow Job: The Great Game Jenni Ferchenko highlights that the story is loosely based on her own experiences of the financial world and therefore whilst it is just a story, it is also very believable.

Whereas other financial-based novels and books try to expose the overabundant abuse of drugs and alcohol this is a novel that focuses on the criminal activity that could be undertaken on a daily basis by the super-rich that others would never be able to trace or stop.

Have you read Snow Job: The Great Game?  Are there other finance based books that you would recommend to others?

Looking for new releases in February to read?  Then check out our latest recommendations which include the highly anticipated novel by Jane Harper (The Force of Nature).

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Snow Job: The Great Game by Jenni Ferchenko is a novel about the criminal activity and corruption that takes place within the investment banking world. Via @tbookjunkie

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