BRONXVILLE, N.Y. – Acclaimed author Norb Vonnegut has spent the past 15 years living in Bronxville and penning three novels, each taking place in and around Wall Street.
Vonnegut has carved a niche for himself as the John Grisham of Wall Street. “There are a couple of people that have called me that,” he said. “I’m really flattered by that because I think he’s a great writer, and he’s given me a ton of pleasure.”
After working 20 years in finance, 10 as a stockbroker for Morgan Stanley, Vonnegut says he has plenty of material to draw from. “I can pull situations from any time,” he said. “What makes Wall Street so great is that it’s cyclical. So its not hard for me to be able to take stories from different years.”
Few writers have made Wall Street stories into thrilling tales of crime and adventure, but his latest book, "The Trust," released July 17, does just that. Vonnegut recalls a co-worker getting a call from someone who wanted to invest $50 million. “As a stockbroker, you normally don’t get those kind of calls,” he said.
Something about the situation was just not right, Vonnegut said. After a background check, the person turned out to be the first cousin of Pablo Escobar, a notorious Colombian drug lord. “He was, in fact, involved in the family business,” Vonnegut said. “I began thinking, 'What if a guy like that would get involved?' And so in 'The Trust,' I ask, 'What would happen if Pablo Escobar’s cousin infiltrated his family’s finances?'”
Just like Grisham novels, Vonnegut said he would like to take a crack at turning one of his books into a movie. “That would be a dream come true,” he said. “There’s seems to be a lot of interest, and I have turned down some opportunities. But I’d love to get a movie made, and I think it would really be one of the most exciting things in the world.”
Vonnegut is actually related to Kurt Vonnegut, who was a distant cousin. “I didn’t have a relationship with him until I was an adult,” he said. “The one thing I will tell you about him is that if he hadn’t become this incredible writer he would have made a great bond trader. He was always pitching something and doing it very well.”
"The Trust," as well as Vonnegut’s previous novels "Top Producer" and "The God’s of Greenwich," are all available in bookstores. For more information, visit www.norbvonnegut.com.