From the PEN/Faulkner Award-winning author of In the Distance. A portrait, in four interconnected texts, of devious financier Andrew Bevel, who survives the Wall Street crash of 1929 and becomes one of New York City’s chief financial barons.
... intricate, cunning and consistently surprising ... Diaz’s own prose keeps an antiseptic distance of its own, no matter who his narrator might be ... Some writers capture their characters’ thoughts through what creative writing teachers call a close third person. Diaz relies in contrast on a far one, and his sentences are at once cool, deliberate and dispassionate. In both books, he reports on his characters’ inner lives instead of dramatizing them, and in Vanner’s hands especially, the result reads more like a biography than a novel: a narrative without dialogue, in which Rask’s life is given to us more often in summary than in scenes ... It’s a disorienting but effective way to present a character who seems almost entirely without an inner life of his own, whose whole being lies in anticipating the clickety-click of a ticker tape ... much of the novel’s pleasure derives from its unpredictability, from its section-by-section series of formal surprises ... a strangely self-reflexive work: strangely, because unlike some metafictional exercises this book does more than chase its own tail. The true circularity here lies in the workings of capital, in a monetary system so self-referential that it has forgotten what Diaz himself remembers. For Trust always acknowledges the world that lies outside its own pages. It recognizes the human costs of a great fortune, even though its characters can see nothing beyond their own calculations; they are most guilty when most innocent, most enthralled by the abstraction of money itself.
Everything in Trust is in its place. Like four exquisite dioramas, Diaz has set up all of these stories with great precision to present two fundamental questions: Why do we tell stories? And at what cost are those stories told? The stories in question revolve around finance, power, and identity, are all self-serving, and are about much more than what one person does to another ... a remarkably accessible treatise on the power of fiction. This unquestionably smart and sophisticated novel not only mirrors truth, but helps us to better understand it.
Diaz's ingenious new fiction, told in four overlapping parts, challenges conventional story lines of another favorite American theme: capitalism and the accumulation of vast wealth ... With great skill and using multiple voices, Diaz employs his inventive structure to offer intriguing insights into the hidden roles played by subservient women.