Wall Street or the CIA? This is the choice for brilliant computer scientist Jay Calloway. But is there really a choice? Beautiful and mysterious Tonia Taggert first captivates and then confuses the young programmer while MacKenzie Lazarus CEO Angus MacKenzie throws both gold and lead in his path. Only the help of long time friend Rick Hewlett can help Jay extricate himself from the tangled web that is weaved all around Jay.
If you liked The Firm and if you liked Wall Street, then you'll love this fast-paced techno-thriller romance. The Trade is the latest release of long-time author JT Kalnay who is now publishing under his own name. Follow along with Jay and Tonia as they struggle to find love in a fairy tale gone very wrong.
Sample from The Trade
The kid looked good on paper. Very good. Cryptography, computer viruses, born in the Midwest, American citizen, both parents American citizens, dad a veteran, mom a member of the PTA. Very good indeed. But San Krantz hadn't risen to his post at the CIA relying on paper. Humint. That's what he'd asked for on the Calloway kid. Human intelligence. And he'd gotten very little of it. Apparently no-one in Vinton county knew the kid, or if they did, they didn't want to talk about him. At least there were some loose-lipped people at his university. And that's where something wasn't perfect. One of the people he knew at school, Rick Hewlett. There was something there. So today, Stan knew he'd get a chance to grill the kid and see if he held up. Like any good lawyer, Krantz wanted to know the answer to all the questions he was going to ask before he asked them. And he mostly did. But he didn't know all the answers. He doubted that Calloway even knew the answer to all the questions he was going to be asked.
"Pull off for a second," Rick said.
"Pull off for a second," Rick said. Jay eased off at the Mitchell Street exit, the way to the zoo. Rick and Jay both got out of the car. Jay walked around to where Rick was standing by the guard rail.
"Are you alright?" Jay asked.
"When you go to the CIA interview, don't tell them we're such good friends. They'll check on you, know you know me, know we worked together and studied together, they'll know we're friends, but it'll go better for you if you don't tell them we're good friends," Rick said. He didn't look at Jay. He remained looking out over the guard rail, alternating between speaking and spitting.
"Why?" Jay asked. He realized it was a stupid question before the last syllable left his mouth. Wished he could pull the words back out of the air. Rick turned his head to look at Jay from the corner of his eye. Jay could see the scowl on his older friend's face. Had seen the angry older brother look before when he'd said or done equally inane things. He felt the back of his neck and the cheeks of his face go red and hot.
"Sorry," he said.
Tonia finally looked up from the spot on the ground where she'd been staring. She moved closer to him. Her navy blue eyes focused in on his. Her blonde hair, pulled back by a runner's head band, shone a dull gold in the tree filtered morning sunlight. Joggers and cyclists and roller bladers streamed past in bright Lycra or dull grey sweats. She took another step toward Jay and reached out and pulled him towards her, gathering him into a tender, then quickly frantic embrace. She held him and put her head on his shoulder for what was just an instant but what Jay remembered as being much longer. Stepping back, she broke the contact. Tears seemed to be welling, she was struggling to keep them from bursting out of her incandescent eyes. She looked straight into his tired baby blues.
"I can't," she said evenly. "I can't," she repeated, more slowly with sadness in her voice and tremors in her lower lip. "I can't." And she was gone. She turned and ran away. Leaving him standing there with his heart that had been so newly awakened now slowly breaking. Jay walked back to the hotel, mile after lonely mile through the suddenly desolate streets of the big city that he was learning to love and hate at the same time. Only miles later did Jay notice that somehow Tonia had managed to slip the note with his phone number from his damaged hand.