Set in the near future at the intersection of fables, ancient mythologies, organized religions, literature, and pop culture, Wall Street West uses layers of every aspect of human evolution since the most recent ice age to establish the stakes in the pitched battle of Father Destiny who's fighting for democracy versus King James who represent the super wealthy. This second entry in the “Age of Darkness” series opens with a quote from Octavia Butler's Parable of the Sower, then launches into a sometimes overwhelming deluge of historical references. One of many recurring themes is the cautionary tale that warns of the global impacts of financial illiteracy presented in the context of a clever mash-up of Afro-futuristic supernatural fantasy. Passages dense with financial history, theory, and more narrative telling than showing plus unexpected shifts in verb tense often slow the pace, especially in the first few chapters of an overall provocative read. The dedication, prologue, and twenty-four chapters divided into two phases work together to create a passionate saga that challenges entrenched ideas about how and why and when resources and wealth are distributed. Its message echoes today’s real-life headlines from around the world.
Reviewed by Cardyn Brooks