"From Las Vegas to Dubai, from Shanghai to London, the fatal pull of the gambling world stretches...Savannah, pleasure-loving It Girl, wants to prove herself to her powerful, ruthless father Michael Hudson - until a terrible tragedy forces her to re-think her life. Lois, an ex-cop from the wrong side of the tracks, is now running the gambling business of Michael's greatest rival, Roberto Enzo - and torn between the glamour and wealth of the casinos and the needs of her vulnerable young daughter. Both women have to confront their pasts, discover new loves, and find out the really important things in life before the greed and corruption of their worlds consume them."
I have never had the pleasure of reading any of Jo Rees' work before, but I thoroughly enjoyed this novel. The one negative thing I will say is that I don't believe the blurb does this book justice.
This novel follows the lives of two women, Savannah Hudson, whose father is a casino tycoon, and Lois Chan, an ex-cop who works for Hudson's rival.
Rees sets the scene by introducing these two women at an awards ceremony, before going back in time to tell their stories from five years previously, until that night. I love the way Rees does this, she gives us a glimpse of what's to come and then fills in the blanks. Her writing style is such that these 'blanks' keep us gripped and eager to find out more.
The two main characters are fantastic. They are well written, deep and most importantly believable. Rees tells us about one for a chapter or two then onto the other. The result is that we feel a deep connection or sympathy with one, and indifference or even distaste towards the other. As we read on it all turns in reverse, to the point where I actually couldn't tell you which character I preferred!
As for the story, well it's quite simply brilliant. There are twists and turns, shocks and romances - it really does keep us on our toes. I'm reticent to reveal any of this fantastic story but I assure you, you will not be bored. Not only does the story seamlessly swing from Savannah to Lois, but the countries and backdrop are ever changing too.
This isn't just a novel about gambling or succeeding, it's a novel exploring trust, relationships, addictions and love. If you want a clever novel that is so much more than a generic chick lit you should not go past this stunning story. I cannot recommend it enough.