I’ve just finished reading Geraint Anderson’s book, Just Business.
I’m reading it partly because Geraint’s going to be a guest at the Financial Services Club in June, when he launches his new book Payback Time, so I want to be prepped, and also because it’s a fun read reminding me in places of the humour and style of Tom Sharpe.
The whole thing is a light-hearted rom-com blend of reality and fiction based upon Geraint’s own life and set around the City of London.
Geraint is the former banker who wrote a blog and then book called Cityboy.
The hero of this book is Steve Jones who writes a column for the London Paper, called Cityboy.
Steve is a bit of a hapless character, which is a bit of a conundrum for an investment banker, and is fairly stereotypical of the breed: ruthless, bonus obsessed, paranoid, drug-fuelled and a Master of the Universe.
He’s also got a problem: his boss has discovered that he’s writing a Cityboy column and is going to get rid of him the day before bonus day.
However, Steve decides to solve the problem in a rather strange way which leads to all sorts of complications with money launderers, drug runners, Interpol, the FSA and more.
I started the book with a little bit of cynicism, and didn’t particularly like the idea of Geraint’s alter-ego Cityboy being the hero of the book. Nor did I particularly like lots of references to real-life issues, such as the $3 trillion a year laundering machine that washes through the City of London, much of it unchecked.
Far too dull and steeped in our realities.
However, as the story went on, I found the story developed a little like a Hugh Grant rom-com film as Steve goes on the run with the love of his life.
Before you know it, you get into the spirit and fun of it all and it washes over you like a cool wave of smiles, with a little intrigue and suspense in between.
There are some tense moments as Steve goes on the run, and a twist in the tail or two, and the parody of Hector Sants who morphs into Peter Saint is particularly enjoyable.
So by the time I got to the last page it was, all in all, a very enjoyable fun read and I’d recommend it.
And come to our meeting in June and you’ll get to meet the author in person … see you there then.