Two brothers. Three secret service agents. And millions for the taking. Charlie and Oliver Caruso are brothers who work at Greene and Greene, a private bank so exclusive there's a $2 million minimum to be a client. But when the door of success slams in their faces, the brothers are presented with an offer they can't refuse: $3 million in an abandoned account that can't be traced. It's the perfect victimless crime. Charlie and Oliver opt to take the money, but get much more than they bargained for. Now, with a lot of extra zeroes in their pockets and a friend found dead, the Secret Service and a female private investigator are closing in. Whose money did they take? How will they stay alive? And why is the Secret Service trying to kill them? Both Charlie and Oliver quickly realize it's not easy being The Millionaires.
This giddy fourth thriller by Meltzer (The First Counsel) mixes up banking, cyber-theft and Disney World in a fast-paced, fresh-scrubbed tale of financial adventure. Oliver Caruso is sweating out some scut work for Henry Lapidus, bigwig at Greene & Greene, a private bank so exclusive clients require $2 million just to open an account. When Oliver and his younger brother, Charlie, find proof that Lapidus has been sabotaging Oliver's career plans, the brothers conspire to rip off the lingering balance from a deceased client's account. Silly boys! Not only is the local security goon Shep (formerly Secret Service) already chiseling in on their scam, the real Secret Service thugs are on the case almost immediately. The $3 million the Carusos swiped has somehow cybernetically blossomed overnight to over $300 million. Desperate to clear their names, the boys escape to Florida, following the money to the daughter of the deceased millionaire, a former tech wizard for Disney with a secret invention everyone in this book would happily kill for. The ins and outs of how to steal money that isn't really there makes for an interesting premise if you don't think about it too much, but two flaws detract from the action. First, the narrative POV jumps too often from one character to the next and from present tense to past, making for a choppy read. Second, the novel's juvenile flavor from the PI who bluffs her way into a building by claiming to be searching for her mother's favorite sock to the hapless schoolboy dialogue ("You touched her cookies, didn't you?") loudly proclaims its Hardy Boys heritage.
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A little too much said with a look...but a good read nonetheless.
Great read! One of the best books I have read in a long time. Great from start to finish.
The book dragged on with difficult dialogue and unlivable characters. I finished it...and was glad to have it done. If Metzler hadn't droned on with boring and improbable conversations between the brothers and concentrated on the true issues driving the plot, the story would have been more enjoyable. Unanswered questions and the use of Disney world were major distractions to the book. Perhaps by including the "Mouse" The author hoped to get a screenplay deal. All in all it read like a bad and misguided screenplay for a television show.