Dealings: A Political and Financial Life

Felix Rohatyn, Simon & Schuster, $27 (352p) ISBN 978-1-43918-196-6
A veteran investment banker—and the man who saved New York City from its 1970s fiscal crisis—tells his rags to riches story in this energetic but uneven memoir. After a narrow escape from Nazi-occupied Paris, Polish-born Rohatyn (Bold Endeavors), currently chairman and CEO of the investment firm Lazard Ltd., scrambled for an American education and found work as an assistant and tutor to Edith Piaf. When that gig dried up, he began working at the small investment bank of Lazard Frères—thus beginning his storied financial career. Rohatyn tells the story of his journey with fastidious detail—from fighting in the Korean War, enduring a difficult stretch (and an SEC investigation) on the board of ITT, through his invitation to join the board of governors of the NYSE at a young age, his 18 years as chairman of New York City's Municipal Assistance Corporation, and finally his ambassadorship to France. Though he's lived in turbulent times and accomplished much, this memoir feels one-note and suffers from dry storytelling; not even the financial wheeling and dealing and celebrity cameos (Frank Sinatra, Bennett Cerf, Jack Welch) will retain the reader's interest. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 09/20/2010
Release date: 11/01/2010
Genre: Nonfiction
Ebook - 304 pages - 978-1-4391-8198-0
Paperback - 312 pages - 978-1-4391-8197-3
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