A novel set in Greenwich, Connecticut, at the beginning of the 2008 financial crisis, about five women whose lives are dramatically changed by the downfall of a financial titan they are all connected to.
Blending high-stakes economic intrigue with high-class family drama, Our Little Racket is a sweeping and immersive novel. Baker fully inhabits each of her characters, voicing each with depth and breadth. Though Bob is nominally the center of the story, teenage and tenacious Madison has the most satisfying story arc. Fans of Cristina Alger’s The Darlings (2012) and Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney’s The Nest (2016) will enjoy this engrossing and illuminating glimpse into Greenwich’s upper crust.
Among the targets most squarely in her sights are the over-groomed, over-educated, under-occupied women who have outsourced the care of their children and obscenely opulent gated estates to hired help ... Madison, at once unbelievably savvy and credibly vulnerable, takes her father’s 'implosion' the hardest, and her story dominates the book. It is the most fully realized — in fact, her perspective alone could easily have carried this novel — but also, in the early chapters, the most tiresome ... Our Little Racket, while it takes too long to get there, ends in just the right place and on just the right note. The bottom line: Angelica Baker is a writer to watch out for.
The novel is ambitious, if a tad over-long. It’s about Stepford Wives, or in this case, Greenwich wives, who prop up their driven husbands until the bottom falls out ... This is a novel of manners, but with bite. If this reader wished for more of a feminist rebellion at novel’s end, that would have been inconsistent with the passive-aggressive nature of these Greenwich women. Money doesn’t buy fortitude, grit or spine. In fact, at the end, money fails these characters, and these moneyed characters fail one another. The novel’s darkness is a reminder that money can’t buy a happy ending, either.