Reviewed by Emily Sutton (age 15) for Reader Views (02/17)
“The Secret Billionaire” is an intriguing young adult mystery/thriller by debut author, Teymour Shahabi. The premise involves the decades-old unsolved disappearance of Billionaire, Lyndon Surway, and the current-day life and challenges of a young boy named Andrew Day.
Lyndon Surway took off in his private jet one beautiful morning never to return. After being missing in action for 90 days, Surway was officially pronounced dead. The reading of his Last Will and Testament revealed Lucian Baker as the heir to Surway’s estate, one of the largest fortunes in history. The problem with that is no one has ever heard of, or can find, anyone named Lucian Baker. The other problem is there seems to be no trace of the massive fortune.
Andrew Day is an orphan, who has been in and out of different homes and schools throughout the course of his lifetime. He is a stranger to wealth and luxury, but he knows deep inside that his is bound for good things. A high school freshman, Andrew learns that he is the recipient of a scholarship set up by an anonymous donor to attend St. Clemens, the most prestigious and expensive school in the country. St. Clemens is located in the same town where Lyndon Surway lived. The mystery of Surway’s disappearance was never solved and decades later Andrew Day stumbles upon a secret that will change his life forever.
This is a really great story that captivated me from the first page. I found it hard to believe that this is the author’s first book. The writing is flawless and he has such an alluring style that kept me engaged and entertained throughout the whole story. The narrative is crisp and clean, easy to follow and full of intrigue, adventure, and page-turning suspense. The characters totally make the story, as they are genuine and well developed. I was immediately drawn to the protagonist Andrew, and his plight. It is a long book at over 360 pages, but the story flowed so effortlessly that it felt like time progressed at twice the normal speed.
Overall, I found “The Secret Billionaire” by Teymour Shahabi to be an excellent read and I sincerely hope there is a sequel, as I definitely want more of these characters! Another thing I wanted to point out is that even though this is a young adult read, the story is so fascinating and well written that it will appeal to readers of all ages.