Algonquin Round Table
The Observer put down our book last Saturday and ventured out to Gardiner Farm for the eighth annual Authors Night at the East Hampton Library. By the time we arrived, a plethora of library patrons—evidently undeterred by the cloudy skies—swarmed the tent in hopes of chatting up their favorite writers.
Hosted by library benefactors Alec Baldwin and Barbara Goldsmith, the reception boasted a guest list of more than 100 authors—everyone from the former Real Housewife of New York Kelly Killoren Bensimon, author of the “supermodel diet” book I Can Make You Hot, to the esteemed Lyndon Johnson biographer Robert Caro. Literary aficionados of all breeds meandered between tables with plastic cups of wine, accumulating stacks of personally inscribed hardcovers.
Sitting beside a large pile of copies of his second autobiography, Dick Cavett appeared to be thoroughly enjoying the attention of a throng of admirers and photographers. As we approached, he spontaneously grabbed both sides of our head and pulled us in for a dramatic kiss on the cheek. “I just wanted to give the photographer a thrill,” he whispered, a gleam in his eye.
“This hotel is exactly how I would have imagined the Algonquin transforming itself in the 21st century,” announced Penguin Books CEO David Shanks to an attentive crowd last week.
A single person clapped and, realizing they were all alone, stopped.
Mr. Shanks continued, “It exudes the grandeur of Gotham and the dazzle of the iconic Mad Men design gone modern.” Mr. Shanks cleared his throat. “It’s really amazing.”
Last Monday, a group (of “top hotel and publishing executives as well as media industry influencers,” per a press release) was gathered at a private party to celebrate the grand reopening of the gut-renovated hotel and the launch of its new partnership with Penguin Books.
Seeking redress: The bankruptcy trustee assigned to recover claims on MF Global’s U.S. brokerage unit pointed a finger at Jon S. Corzine, erstwhile CEO of the failed broker-dealer, in a 275-page report published yesterday. James Giddens, the trustee, may pursue claims of “breach of fiduciary duty and negligence” against Mr. Corzine and other Read More
Squeeze play: JPMorgan has been selling profitable securities to prop up second-quarter results after the bank’s chief investment office and the trader known as the London Whale incurred billions in losses. The asset sales may be tax inefficient, and will deprive the lender of future gains, which is just too bad for Jamie Dimon’s firm. With its share price down 18 percent from the day before the trading losses were first reported, JPMorgan is under pressure to generate earnings.
The New York Times
There’s a book party at Tao next week, but its guest list looks more like a Davos reunion. Among the yeses: ex-Chairman of the Fed Alan Greenspan, Nobelist Joseph Stiglitz, Pershing Square boss Bill Ackman, and Financial Times editor Gillian Tett.
Assuming they show, that’s not a bad draw for a first-time author. Then again, The Alpha Masters, by 27-year-old Squawk Box producer Maneet Ahuja, isn’t just any book. Like the party, the book is an impressive feat of investor-wrangling, a collection of insider accounts from low-profile, high-powered hedge fund managers like John Paulson, Marc Lasry and David Tepper. It’s out on May 21 from Wiley.
Look at those crazy tech bloggers over at The New York Times’ Gadgetwise Blog. It’s like a scene from Page One.
Today, a digital short featuring DealBook Editor (and former Wunderkind) Andrew Ross Sorkin and personal technology editor Sam Grobart explores what happens when cool iPhone users exchange cellphones with Read More
Wall Street Mischief
The Transom spun around as a feminine (but firm) hand slapped our ass.
“You’re a reporter, obviously?” said a woman well into her second of something strong, in a first-floor room of the University Club on Tuesday afternoon.
We answered in the affirmative and then were told that an introduction to E.F. Hutton’s 84-year-old daughter Read More
“I’ve been trying not to say anything bad about Andrew Ross Sorkin,” Matt Taibbi writes about the perky business desk blog whiz at the New York Times. “I even made a point of not watching Too Big To Fail so as not to get upset.”
But maybe Andrew Ross Sorkin does not like to be Read More
Too Big To Fail
A few hours after HBO’s Too Big to Fail, the star-studded adaptation of New York Times financial reporting wunderkind Andrew Ross Sorkin’s best-selling account of the 2008 collapse of Lehman Brothers, made its debut before a national audience, a broadcast journalist who reports for a financial news channel gave The Observer her postmortem.
“There’s just Read More
Homeless men idled outside the Four Seasons restaurant as financial titans and celebrities shuttled in from the rain, assisted by burly bouncers. Upstairs, at Monday’s postpremiere party for HBO’s Too Big to Fail—based on the book by New York Times financial reporter wunderkind Andrew Ross Sorkin—sprawling platters of sushi and ceviche awaited consumption.
“Well,” Read More