Book details

The Money Trap

Lost Illusions Inside the Tech Bubble

Author: Alok Sama

The Money Trap

The Money Trap

About This Book

A gripping and entertaining memoir that shines a rare light on an industry that is disrupting our lives.

Veteran Morgan Stanley banker Alok Sama thought he'd seen it all....

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Book Details

A gripping and entertaining memoir that shines a rare light on an industry that is disrupting our lives.

Veteran Morgan Stanley banker Alok Sama thought he'd seen it all. Then he found himself chief dealmaker at the most influential technology investor in the world—SoftBank, the backer of Arm Holdings, Yahoo, Nvidia, TikTok, Uber, T-Mobile, Alibaba and WeWork.

The Money Trap is Sama’s thrilling, stranger-than-fiction personal odyssey featuring his experiences alongside SoftBank’s iconic founder, Masayoshi Son, a visionary maverick who wants to be remembered as “the crazy guy who bet on the future” and whose mission is “happiness for everyone.” Sama takes the reader on a wild journey as he consorts with A-list CEOs and heads of state, and negotiates mega-deals on a Gulfstream jet, Son’s sanctuary with its exquisite Japanese garden, and a waterside restaurant in the Turkish Riviera—all while contending with a mysterious dark-arts smear campaign that takes a toll on his private life.

This fascinating and humorous saga provides a unique insider perspective on the insanity of high finance and venture investing. Written with self-deprecating wit, unflinching honesty and searing introspection, The Money Trap is ultimately a morality tale: in life, as in technology investing, more money isn’t always the answer.

Imprint Publisher

St. Martin's Press



In The News

“A riveting page-turner about the world of technology and dealmaking told by an insider…An immigrant's story with something significant to say about class, character, identity, family, and perhaps more than anything, the search for happiness.”
—Jonathan Safran Foer, author of Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close and Everything Is Illuminated

“An existential and exquisitely satisfying business thriller…A wonderful story that begins with big business and big deals and ends with the biggest question: what does it mean to be a person? Sama brings a pure writerly eye into rooms and situations never before captured in print. This is a thrilling and important book: the incredible thing is that it’s all true.”
—David Lipsky, New York Times bestselling author of Absolutely American and Although Of Course You End Up Becoming Yourself

“Sama writes with authority and panache, humor and outrage, and above all knowledge. (Imagine Michael Lewis had been President of SoftBank.) This man knows a lot, and he’s willing to share—and to make sure you have a great time as he does. If this book doesn't become a bestseller, the world truly makes no sense.”
—Darin Strauss, National Book Critics Circle Award–winning author of Half a Life

“A rollicking, revealing, and deeply personal memoir of a banker and corporate consigliere at the very top of his game…A must-read for anyone hoping to understand how power is wielded in corporate boardrooms. I couldn’t put it down.”
—Gary Ginsberg, New York Times bestselling author of First Friends, former head of communications at News Corp, Time Warner and SoftBank Group

“Witty, incisive, and introspective, a genuine pleasure to read…a simultaneously funny and eye-opening memoir, a rare window into a world most only hear about.”
Bradley Hope, New York Times bestselling coauthor of Billion Dollar Whale and Pulitzer Prize finalist

"A fascinating story about money, power, and the culture of the rarified group of people who wield it…an entertaining and illuminating memoir about what it’s like to find yourself in the room as some of the biggest deals in history are being made."
—Hari Kunzru, author of Blue Ruin, Red Pill, Transmission and The Impressionist

“A vivid and intimate story of an insider's rise to power in the world of money—and his search to find his own peace and freedom.”
—Leigh Owings Newman, books editor at, author of Nobody Gets Out Alive and Still Points North

"A shot of adrenaline that takes you directly inside some of the most exclusive rooms in tech and finance, and a colorful insider's look into the companies that rule our world."
—Rob Copeland, New York Times bestselling author of The Fund

About the Creators

The Money Trap

The Money Trap