On the Floor: Book summary and reviews of On the Floor by Aifric Campbell

On the Floor

By Aifric Campbell

On the Floor
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  • Published in USA  Jun 2013,
    256 pages.

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Book Summary

Longlisted for the Orange Prize

A hard-living investment banker has three days to decide her destiny in this thrilling novel.

It has been 182 days of vodka and insomnia since Geri Molloy got dumped. A twenty-eight-year-old investment banker with a rare knack for numbers, Geri counts the days since her breakup with the same determination that has made her serious capital on her firm's London trading floor. But it is January of 1991, and war in the Middle East is about to shake up the markets - and maybe also change the course of her career.

The firm's biggest client is Felix Mann, a reclusive hedge fund manager in Hong Kong, who will only talk to Geri. But Geri is being pushed to her breaking point, and several rivals are hungry for a seat at the table. When she finds herself caught up in a high-stakes takeover, Felix is game for the power play - but his price tag is Geri's future.

At once fiercely intelligent and utterly gripping, Aifric Campbell's On the Floor is a sharp-edged story about love and money, the cruel appraisals we make of one another, and what it really means for a woman to take control of her life.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Though an open-ended resolution may frustrate some, Geri's self-aware reenactment of Wall Street [is] a heart-pounding ride.." - Publishers Weekly

"Life's hard knocks send a brilliant, tough-talking woman investment banker reeling. The painful struggle to regain her footing and leverage a different option on her future shapes a riveting loss-of-innocence story sharply informed by the author's years as a manager onthe London trading room floor. " - Library Journal

"Those unfamiliar with and/or uninterested in the stock market will find the first part of the book tough slogging, but readers who manage to stick around may find the unexpected ending worth the effort. Campbell's story, interwoven with the outbreak of the Gulf War, excels when she concentrates onthe little details that make her characters interesting." - Kirkus

"On the Floor's appeal is broad...It's that rare work of fiction in which the financial world functions as more than a mere backdrop." - Bloomberg

"On the Floor is a funny-yet-serious coming-of-age story about a young woman who finally grows up and takes control." - The Independent (UK)

"Impressively constructed...A short, snappy, and ultrasmart drama." - Daily Mirror (UK)

"A good, literary read…On the Floor is a wonderful look into the financial world of the nineties; a time before banking became ruled by scientists and geeks." - The Irish Examiner

"Enjoyable...Campbell knows this world well, so it all feels authentic." - Irish Sunday Times

"On the Floor is a riveting novel from a unique talent. Aifric Campbell effortlessly conjures the action and excitement of the trading room floor creating a novel that explores the consequences of risk taking and ultimately thrills from start to finish." - Irish Tatler

"Move over, Lisbeth Salander! Geri Molloy is a captivating protagonist - she might not have a dragon tattoo, but her story is riveting. On the Floor is the smartest financial novel since The Bonfire of the Vanities, and the first with a fully drawn female heroine. As someone who worked in the trenches of Wall Street during the 1990s, I can attest that the details are dead right. And I'm still cheering Geri on." - Frank Partnoy, bestselling author of F.I.A.S.C.O.: The Inside Story of a Wall Street Trader and Wait: The Art and Science of Delay

"Aifric Campbell knows her subjects intimately, and On the Floor reveals the secrets of high-stakes finance and her heroine's private lives. Geri Molloy aces her career with pluck and genius. A brilliant and hilarious novel." - Min Jin Lee, national bestselling author of Free Food for Millionaires

"In On the Floor, Aifric Campbell has created the perfect heroine in Geri Molloy: complicated, wildly talented, wary of others yet longing to connect, and haunted by demons both past and present as she navigates the high-flying financial world of the early 1990s. A hugely intelligent and fast-paced novel about what drives us, what fulfills us, and how to tell the difference." - Emily Rapp, author of The Still Point of the Turning World

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Aifric Campbell spent thirteen years at Morgan Stanley, where she became the first woman managing director on the London trading floor. She left to earn a Ph.D. in creative writing at the University of East Anglia and currently teaches at Imperial College, London. Campbell has been awarded a fellowship at UCLA and residencies at Yaddo.

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