The Wall Street Bull is one of the most recognizable symbols in America. It represents the center of power and wealth: Wall Street. Countless lives can be affected both positively and negatively by simply uttering the words “buy” or “sell.” When a severed head is found impaled on the Wall Street Bull, Det. Louis Martelli realizes someone is trying to make a “point.” After two more similar murders and a fast-track tutorial about how Wall Street relates to the pharmaceutical industry, Martelli begins to realize that these murders may not be unrelated. His investigation turns up a woman who was unable to get the medicine that could have saved her life due to the FDA not approving it. It also comes to light that her son was asked to leave the FDA hearing at which his mother testified because he became upset when some members of the panel dozed off during his mother’s testimony. Martelli must put aside his personal feelings about what happened and travel across the country in order to capture the killer.
Death by Wall Street: Rampage of the Bulls by Theodore Jerome Cohen is an incredible journey into the often deceptively golden world of Wall Street. Cohen weaves a fascinating plot around what should be one of the most transparent processes of all but is often not: the approval of a potentially lifesaving drug. Most of us have no real idea of how a drug is created, tested and finally approved for use. Cohen’s novel takes the reader inside this process, from the firm on Wall Street that rates the stock to the FDA Advisory Panel that approves or disapproves a drug and everything in-between. Martelli is a character with tremendous potential that I hope Cohen will exploit to the fullest. The only improvement I would have made would be to have a prologue to set up the scene in Chapter 1. With that in mind, I happily give this novel 4/5 stars.