Personal Finance Concepts Wrapped in Thrillers

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The first 25 readers to leave a comment will win a complimentary copy  [Kindle Format] of Sin City Greed. The giveaway begins on 16 March and ends on 18 March (10:00 p.m. EDT) or when all 25 prizes have been claimed, whichever comes first.

While I enjoy running the blog, last year I began looking for a different way to be more creative and communicate with those interested in personal finance. That idea led to my first novel, Cream City Hustle. The idea behind the book was simple; communicate personal finance concepts and ideas within the framework of a fictional thriller.

The story’s protagonist, 20-year old Marcus, faces the same challenges many other Millennials are now confronting: building and maintaining an emergency fund, controlling debt and starting the process of saving for retirement. Fittingly, those practices and concepts, among others, associated with those objectives are touched on in the book.

My second novel, recently released, is titled Sin City Greed. In this tale, a group of senior citizens hatch a scheme to recover their stolen money. As I describe the book on Amazon, “In the heat of the Las Vegas Valley, American Greed (the CNBC show) meets Ocean’s Eleven.” As one might imagine the personal finance challenges for a 60-year old are different than those of a 20-year old. Among other personal finance concepts and practices, the protagonists in this story discuss the value in developing steady streams of retirement income, the value of entering retirement without a mortgage, the potential advantages of long-term care insurance and as alluded to in the title, greed.

If you are here, I assume you are interested in personal finance. If you are also interested in a good thriller, I hope you will take the time to check out one or both. What follows are excerpts from both novels:

Sin City Greed — Available in Kindle and Paperback Editions at

Sin City Greed_Bowker CoverLas Vegas. Near the intersection of Paradise and East Flamingo Roads. From his second story office Carlton F. Morrison III, the founder and CEO of Blackstone Financial Services Group, watched as the sun set on the mid-June day. Soon the distant lights would shine bright and the world famous strip would come to life.

“Do you require anything else this evening, Mr. Morrison?” Darlene, his administrative assistant, asked as she rapped lightly on his open door and peeked through the doorway.

“No, Dear, nothing else tonight. I just need to tie up a few loose ends and then I will be out of here. Have a good night.”

“Thank you. You too, Mr. Morrison.”

He’d made the decision a few days ago but had put off actually doing it. Now there was no time. He had received the second notification from Bank of Las Vegas earlier today. If he didn’t get a significant infusion of capital soon, the boutique investment advisory firm he had spent 17 years building from nothing would wither and die here in the Nevada desert. He required additional capital and they required proof of liquid assets before they would increase his credit limit. He had three days.

“How did it come to this?” Carl asked the empty room. Predictably, no answer was forthcoming. It seemed like a lifetime ago that BFSG was humming right along. Both Divisions, Equities – where most of his client’s money was invested – and Real Estate – where most of the firm’s money was invested to fund internal operations – were performing spectacularly. That was no longer the case. While the Equities Division continued to post strong returns, the Real Estate Division had been devastated over the last few years as he had increased his real estate holdings, a mistake in hindsight, just as the meltdown in the Las Vegas housing market accelerated.

Cream City Hustle — Available in Kindle and Paperback Editions at

CCH - Paperback CoverNear West Side. Chicago. To the casual observer, not much ever happened near the intersection of South Keeler Avenue and West Roosevelt Road. An abandoned warehouse fills one corner, stretching half a block in either direction. Empty lots littered with trash and empty bottles, long ago abandoned by would be entrepreneurs, occupy two corners opposite one another. The last corner is home to a run-down strip mall populated by a hair salon, a barber shop, a Bar-B-Q joint and a storefront church where the Southern style gospel music that escapes through the entrance is the only source of inspiration in an otherwise grim reality. Near West Side, Chicago is not a Norman Rockwell image of America.

On this sleepy Thursday afternoon however, something did happen. Anyone who had stumbled into the warehouse and back into the room that formerly housed the Human Resources department, would have been witness to justice, as administered on the cold, hard streets of Chicago. He never would have imagined, at 27 years of age, that he would pee himself. But that was exactly what had happened. After binding his hands and feet, Drake had ordered him to his knees as he pulled out a Smith & Wesson 9mm.

“I would never steal from Caine, Drake. You know that!”

“Your lies fall on deaf ears, L.J. We know you’ve stolen and you know the price.”

As the word ‘price’ escaped Drake’s lips, L.J. saw Caine, or more accurately, Caine’s shadow enter the room. On his knees, in the middle of this room and with his head forced down by the barrel of the 9mm, he couldn’t see anything that was higher than two feet off the floor. However, the width and height of the shadow – the sheer girth – combined with the situation that brought him here, told him all that he needed to know. It was Caine. That was when his bladder betrayed him and he peed himself.

Blogger-in-Chief here at RetirementSavvy and author of Sin City Greed, Cream City Hustle and RENDEZVOUS WITH RETIREMENT: A Guide to Getting Fiscally Fit.


  1. SavvyJames….cool stuff. Original thinking! I hope you connect with many readers.This is a great way to share important information.

    • Thanks, Stephen. Your Gift Certificate should be in your inbox. I hope you enjoy the read and take the time to leave a review once you have finished reading. Looking forward to any feedback I can get.

      • Got my copy! Wanted to thank you, and also thank you for your service to our country. I was a combat Marine during the Vietnam War. Wishing you much success,


        • Great. Glad to hear that you received the copy. Thank you for your service. Take care and enjoy.

  2. Sounds like an interesting read. Thanks for the opportunity!

    • Congratulations! I hope you enjoy and take the time to leave a review once you have finished reading. Check your inbox for your Amazon Gift Certificate. Take care.

  3. A man of many talents. That’s the first time I’ve ever heard of a ‘Personal Finance Thriller’ but I like the sound of it. Maybe you should write a personal finance horror story? (there are plenty of those in our culture, right?). All the best!

    • Thanks for stopping by, Felix Money. Yeah, while there are some finance related thrillers out there – a small genre in itself – I don’t really believe there is anything else out there that might be considered a personal finance thriller. Maybe some other personal finance bloggers will not only offer their support by picking up a copy or two, but join me in developing a new way to share personal finance concepts and practices … in a different way than finance related websites and blogs. Time will tell.

  4. Great post. I’ll check these two books out.

    • I look forward to your feedback. FWIW, they are both available in Kindle and Paperback Editions. Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to leave a comment.

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