Authors Showcase: Kerri’s War by Stephen Douglass
February 5, 2015
The Book: Kerri’s War
The Author: Stephen Douglass
The Book: Kerri’s War
The Author: Stephen Douglass
The Story from A Review: I have just completed this third tale of the King Family. These books are rare. While the characters in all three thread together, each book is a totally singular narrative. The plot lines are complex yet the author’s strength, and this is a rare talent, is keep you in the loop, even if an event he is referencing happened decades in the past and you haven’t read another of the King saga.
All three are well written and keep your attention in every chapter. Douglass has a firm command of the financial and commodities markets, and the legal system. His dialogs are real. He paints great scenes and portrays action well.
If you enjoy a rich read with a genuine sense of the realities the characters inhabit then these three novels will not disappoint.
You are about to read the story of a thirty-three year old woman who chose to go to war with the greed and avarice of big business, the overwhelming power of the U.S. Internal Revenue Service, and a billion dollar shareholder lawsuit against her. Simultaneously, she chose to fall in love with a man who was engaged to marry another woman.
Kerri King’s dedication and tireless work ethic had taken her to the top. She was the president and CEO of Iacardi & Sons, one of the largest and most successful commodity trading companies in the world. Everything was perfect, until the company was nearly decimated by the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Tormented by the loss of all but three of the company’s New York employees, and driven to provide a source of income for the families and loved ones of the Iacardi employees who died on that terrible day, she begins the fight to rebuild the company.
Virtually all of the cards and circumstances are stacked against her. The company is broke. Charles and Mario Iacardi, the company’s founders and financial providers, are dead. Peter Tavaris, Walter Deaks, and Billie Dukes, the three surviving New York employees, are vehemently opposed to Kerri’s continuing leadership. Enerco, a gigantic Houston based energy trading company, conspires to purchase Iacardi & Sons, and employs every dirty trick in the corporate playbook to accomplish that objective. Desperate to salvage value for their Iacardi stock, the shareholders launch a billion dollar lawsuit against Kerri, and vote to have her removed as president. In her quest to provide financial relief to the estates of deceased Iacardi employees, Kerri choses to give away to the Iacardi estates every cent of the fortune accruing from her father’s tainted trust. Her decision triggers disastrous consequences doled out by the Internal Revenue Service.
Kerri’s troubles are not confined to the corporate world. Just when she thinks she has at last found the love of her life, she is horrified to receive an invitation to his wedding in Naples, Florida, on New Years Eve, December 31, 2001. The wedding is like no other she, or any of the invitees, have ever attended.
Review by Nancy of Utah:
This is the third and last story of “The King Trilogy.” I’ve read the first two, which are excellent, but this one is the BEST! I loved it! In this last episode, Kerri King has become legendary on Wall Street. She is now the president and CEO of Iacardi and Sons, commodities brokers, with offices in the South Tower of the World Trade Center. She should be at work today,
Tuesday, but she’s down with a with a severe case of influenza. It’s September 11, 2001. Her life is spared, but her company is being ripped and torn apart as the building is struck by a huge hijacked Boeing 767, Flight 175. In London, Peter Tavaris, a senior trader for Iacardi postpones the conference so he can follow the news of the NYC disaster. He has frequently been passed over by Charles Iacardi for senior management positions and also as president in favor of Kerri King.
He hates women, especially Kerri and has a vindictive core. Kerri’s dad, Mike King, and his wife Karen arrive home to Muskoka, Canada. At 59 years old, he’s been successful with his XG Petroleum company by its growth into a national chain. He and Karen now have time to enjoy slowing down a bit since Golden National Oil has 50 percent interest in XG. They are aboard their 21-foot Donzi boat headed for Azimuth Island which his wife has inherited from her late parents.
The large three-lake area is the retreat area for the rich and famous to enjoy their multi-million dollar cottages. Kerri is devastated about the destruction of the South Tower in which of her 346 employees, only four have survived. She needs to talk to her dad about the 186 million dollars left from a settlement with the government over oil sales back in 1991. Miles Dennis, her mentor at Iacardi who has died in the attack, had moved that money to Switzerland as Mike didn’t want anything to do with it. But now Miles is dead and the only people who know about that money is Mike, Karen, and Kerri who’s the sole owner of that account. Kerri wants to use that money to help the families of the Iacardi employees who had died on 9-11.
But no one knows if that money is hot or cold, and there would be questions when that money came back into the United States. She wishes to give it all away, equally to each family, as an anonymous donor. Sounds like a plan? Yes, but someone is going to try to get Kerri tagged perhaps for tax evasion on those funds over the last ten years. Would it be Tavaris who is contacted by an old classmate who wants to buy Iacardi, only in a stock exchange, no cash.
Kerri holds only three percent of the stock, but Tavaris is adamant to seal this proposed deal, even if it means burying her in dirty laundry, or a grave. This is an easy to read story I could not put down. It’s compelling, extraordinary, finely honed, and sometimes even heartbreaking. But I read it to the very end, and the last two words made me laugh out loud! There is nothing boring about this exemplary novel written by very talented Stephen Douglass. I hope he is working on another book to thrill me. Give it a shot, it will inspire you!