Nest of Vipers

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“If John Grisham were female and British, he might write a twisty thriller such as Nest of Vipers.” Fortune Magazine

“Wall Street’s answer to Scott Turow.” New Woman

“Authentic, gripping, utterly fascinating.” Entertainment Weekly

Sarah Jensen is a brilliant but deeply troubled trader turned MI6 agent who goes undercover to investigate a bank suspected of major international fraud. The mission is far more dangerous than Sarah realises.

Suspect number one is Dante Scarpirato – rich, smart, uncomfortably attractive. Sarah’s investigation leads her deep into a world of deceit, ruthless power brokers and a doomed relationship with Scarpirato.

As Sarah confronts criminals who will stop at nothing – even murder – to prevent her from finding the truth, she must confront her own deep and twisted secrets that have haunted her since childhood… But provide the only path to safety and redemption.

Heralded by USA Today as the most talked about book of the year, Nest of Vipers is an international bestseller (published in more than thirty countries, optioned three times by major Hollywood studios) that launched the financial thriller genre and is written by one of the first women to step into the arena of global high finance.

Read the reviews

“Davies shows masterful indirection, letting just the right red herrings swim by.” (Click to read full review)
“This gripping read reveals a flashy merchant class and a moral void—akin to an upholstered pit in a gambling casino… The game of fast-track money deals is as much an aphrodisiac as power and forbidden sex in this financial thriller.” (Click to read full review)
“A fan of Graham Greene and John Le Carré, Linda Davies’ speciality is the link between banking and the secret service.”
“A wonderful, glossy, sexy thriller set in the City, masses of plotting, counter-plotting and double doubles, a marvellously brave, beautiful brilliant heroine, a devastatingly desirable baddie-hero and the kind of detail that involves you 101 per cent. The only thing I didn’t like was finishing it.” ~ Penny Vincenzi
“This book is a class act.”
“ONE TO WATCH: This was lapped up with as much enthusiasm by my teenage reader as by my male crime reader, a sure indication that it straddles the markets, ages, sexes and genres. It’s an urban thriller involving insider dealings, murder and adventure.”
“We get an idea of the coolness, daring and imagination that go into successful high-voltage trading involving hundreds of millions… Enough action, financial know-how and international hokey-pokey to satisfy any reader.” (Click to read full review)
“Davies, herself a former merchant banker, does a terrific job of explaining the inner workings of foreign-exchange markets and of creating a sense of the supercharged atmosphere in which the traders do their deals.”
“An accomplished thriller.”
“Sleek, cinematic plotting, along with sexual intrigue and derring-do…”
“Wall Street’s answer to Scott Turow.”
“A taut financial thriller. This fast-paced and exciting novel captures the tension and adrenaline of international finance. Recommended for fiction collections.”
“Her writing style is mellifluous, her understanding of high-stakes currency trading authoritative yet unobtrusive, and her action scenes snap-making this a financial thriller with bull, not bear, written all over it.” (Click to read full review)
“Page turner”
“A taut sexy thriller about corruption and general nastiness in the City.”
“If John Grisham were female and British, he might write a twisty thriller such as ‘Nest of Vipers.'”
“Fabulous characters.”

One point McLuhan made was that artists… are always ahead of their times, if only we would listen to them. Linda Davies wrote a novel, based on one of these computer whiz-kids who decided to exploit the system, make a gazillion, while also being employed by the Bank of England as a mole who would rat on his mates. She wrote three years ago what sweet-faced little Nick Leeson accomplished in Singapore last week. …Barbarians are at the Gate. It is a Nest of Vipers.

Allan Fotheringham, “The lesson of Nick Leeson”, Maclean’s, 1995

When banking meets espionage and the mob…

On 9 February 2005, in a response to an FOI request for information about sterling’s expulsion from the European Exchange Rate Mechanism on Black Wednesday, September 16, 1992, the Civil Service inadvertently revealed that MI6 had provided the British government with secret information about impending French interest rate changes.
“It was truly an investment bank to the crooked and the corrupt.” – Mary Jo White, the first female US Attorney for the Southern District of New York on the biggest securities fraud in United States history, a massive stock market scam controlled by the Mafia. The Independent, 15 June 2000
The former British agent Richard Tomlinson claimed in September 1998 that MI6 had a spy in the Bundesbank code-named Orcada, who provided inside information on Germany’s proposed interest rate movements.

Read the Series

“A wonderful, glossy, sexy thriller set in the City, masses of plotting, counter-plotting and double doubles, a marvellously brave, beautiful brilliant heroine, a devastatingly desirable baddie-hero and the kind of detail that involves you 101 per cent. The only thing I didn’t like was finishing it.”

Penny Vincenzi – ‘Top names pick Christmas Books of the year’ in the Daily Mail

Linda Davies develops the world of Nest of Vipers in two further novels. Our heroine Sarah Jensen returns in Linda Davies’ Something Wild, while Into The Fire is set on the cutthroat trading floor of Goldsteins, presided over by Zaha Zamaroh.

Nest of Vipers in translation

President Alberto Fujimori is presented with a copy of the novel Nido de Viboras, the Spanish edition of Nest of Vipers, by Rupert Wise (left), husband of the author Linda Davies. This photograph was taken on board the presidential plane when President Fujimori was flying to London with a group of bankers and business leaders to attend a Latin American investment conference in February 1997, in order to attract foreign investment to Peru, a task made more difficult by the ongoing hostage crisis.

Dutch


De Bank

Amsterdam: Luitingh-Sijthoff, 1994. Paperback version, 320p, ISBN 90 245 2133 5

Sarah Jensen heeft alles over voor haar topbaan… behalve haar leven! Iedereen die werkt in de City, het hart van de Londense zakenwereld, heeft maar één doel: geld verdienen. Zonder die ene, allesoverheersende ambitie red je het niet. Voor een man is het al moeilijk om in die wereld te overleven, voor een vrouw is het bijna onmogelijk. Sarah Jensen, een van de jongste en best betaalde valutahandelaren in de City, weet alles van overleven. Haar ongewone jeugd was een harde leerschool, en haar schoonheid en flair verschaffen haar de juiste camouflage in de slangenkuil waarin zij werkt. De Bank of England en de inlichtingendienst MI6 willen de corruptie binnen een grote financieringsbank laten onder- zoeken. Zij rekruteren Sarah als de ideale infiltrant, maar houden informatie over de omvang van de operatie achter. En Sarah raakt verwikkeld in een levensgevaarlijke samenzwering…

French


L’initiée

Paris: B. Grasset, 1995. 333p. ISBN 2 246 49961 5

Belle, ambitieuse, Sarah Jensen est une cambiste de haut niveau à la City de Londres. Quand le Gouverneur de la Banque d’Angleterre la convoque à son bureau, elle est intriguée. Quand il lui explique qu’il suspecte quelqu’un de corruption à l’Intercontinental Bank, elle n’est pas si surprise. Mais quand il lui demande de se faire engager dans cette banque pour y découvrir des documents compromettants, elle a un premier mouvement de recul. Pourquoi moi ? D’abord, dit-il, parce qu’elle connaît parfaitement ce milieu. Deuxièmement, à cause de sa réputation d’esprit indépendant et frondeur : personne ne pourra imaginer qu’elle travaille pour le gouvernement. Sarah va se trouver impliquée dans une manipulation de délit d’initiés sur le marché international des changes. Lorsqu’un ami et collègue est assassiné, elle se rend compte alors que la fraude va bien au-delà du monde de la finance…

German


Das Schlangennest

Düsseldorf: Marion von Schröder, 1995. 381 S. ISBN 3 547 72041 9

Als die junge Börsenmaklerin Sarah vom Direktor der “Bank of England” um ein Gespräch gebeten wird, ahnt sie noch nicht, was er mit ihr vorhat. Doch sein Angebot reizt sie und so geht sie auf seinen Vorschlag ein, eine Stelle als Devisenhändlerin bei der größten Londoner Bank anzunehmen – und über die dortigen dubiosen Geschäftspraktiken zu berichten. Gleich an ihrem ersten Arbeitstag stolpert sie über merkwürdige Arbeitsmethoden. Geheime Telefonate ihres neuen Chefs mit der italienischen Zentralbank lassen auf Mafia-Kontakte schließen. Als ihre Freundin Mosami ermordet wird, weiß Sarah, daß sie das nächste Opfer sein kann. Von ihren Auftraggebern im Stich gelassen, handelt sie auf eigene Faust.

Italian


Nido di Vipere

Il Sole, 1996, ASIN: B0876ZJJ7Y

Sarah Jensen è una brillante e bella operatrice della City, ingaggiata da Scotland Yard e dalla Banca d’Inghilterra per cercare di far luce su strani traffici finanziari in un grande istituto di credito, che si ritrova implicata in un gioco troppo grosso. La pista conduce a una serie di colossali operazioni di insider trading, a una colossale truffa che frutta miliardi di dollari grazie a interventi sui cambi apparentemente legali, con sorprendenti su su fino agli ambienti finanziari del G-7. E dietro, la “mano invisibile” della mafia con il suo infallibile corollario di paura e sangue.

  • Bulgarian: Hermes
  • Czech: Progress International / Alpress
  • Danish: Slangereden. København: Lindhardt og Ringhoff, 1995. ISBN 87 595 0545 1
  • Finnish: Yksin sis piiriss. Porvoo Helsinki Juva: WSOY, 1995. 346 s. ISBN 951 0 20521 4
  • Greek: Plus One, ISBN 960 360 850 5
  • Hebrew: Ken ha-tsifonim. Or Yehudah: Sifriat Ma’ariv, 1996. 272p.
  • Hungarian: Kígyóverem. Budapest: Europa Konyvkiado, 1996. 387 p. ISBN 963 07 6092 4
  • Indonesian: Gramedia
  • Japanese: Hayakawa, ISBN 4 15 207916 9
  • Korean: Oehwan dillo. Soul-si: Miraesa, 1995. 451p. ISBN 89 7087244 2
  • Polish: Amber. ISBN 83 7082 452 8
  • Portuguese: Ninho de víboras. Objetiva, 1996. 304p. ISBN 85 7302 056 3
  • Russian: Gadiushnik. Moskva: Idz-vo AST, 1998. 459p. ISBN 5 15 000978 4
  • Spanish: Nido de viboras. Barcelona: Plaza & Janes, 1996. 408p. ISBN 84 01 32658 3
  • Swedish: I huggormens bo. Stockholm, Forum, 1995. 342 s. ISBN 91 37 10744 5