When a scandal unfolds, I wonder two things: What was the self-told story the perpetrator believed that let him hurt so many people? What is it like for his family?
When that scandal has roots in crime, I’m hooked. My fourth novel, The Widow of Wall Street, is rooted in a financial scandal of epic proportion.
During the ten years I worked with criminals, the stories they told to excuse themselves fascinated and repelled me. And I learned how every person on this earth has a story they tell to explain away bad behavior—even if only to themselves.
The Widow of Wall Street explores a man who carries out a Ponzi scheme for decades, keeping his family in the dark as he builds a sham family dynasty until the truth explodes. His wife must learn to survive in the debris and come to grips with the realization that her marriage and family were built on air. Researching brought me from nonfiction to memoir to novels—and what a great ride I had.