I don’t want to say too much about this, because if you read it, you should really get the surprised as they come along. Let’s just say it is about a major price fixing scandal that brought down a bunch of powerful people at the powerful Archer Daniels Midland Company. At first, you think the book is going to be a straight ahead “gotcha cheaters!” tell all, but quickly it becomes clear that the work is functioning as both a trashy business book (a genre which I love) and also an investigation into who is an informant, what that means, and how law enforcement handles crimes based on the betrayal of co-conspirators.
Eichenwald is one of my favorite business writers. He also wrote Conspiracy of Fool where he did an excellent job of sorting out the insanity that was Enron’s accounting. Currently he is writing a series of pieces about child pornography for the New York Times, which are excellent, but I find them exceedingly hard to read*. They have troubled him so much, apparently, that he has entered counseling.
Anyway, the Informant is, as one friend put it, a “corker”. If you’re into business dudes behaving badly. If that holds no interest, than neither will the Informant.
Recommended for the Enthusiast.
*ed note. The child porn series would end up being a bit of an undoing for Eichenwald. I didn’t know that when I wrote this.