“Emma Lathen” was the pen name of attorney Mary Jane Latsis and economic analyst Martha Henissart. Their “hero” is the supremely confident John Putnam Thatcher, senior vice-president of the Sloan Guaranty Trust, the third largest bank in the world. Banking on Death, the first book in a 24 book series, deals with a trust set up decades ago by an industrialist. He leaves a considerable fortune to his family. But one of the family has disappeared. And, just as the trust is about to be distributed, that missing family member ends up murdered. The investigation is fairly routine. What makes all of Lathen’s works special is that through the unwinding of the plot, the reader learns about interest rates, bonds, stocks, trusts, wills, and other financial instruments, painlessly, through osmosis. All of Lathen’s works blend business and mystery. My favorite Lathen novel is Accounting for Murder.