Empire: A Tale of Obsession, Betrayal, And The Battle For An American Icon
A veteran Wall Street Journal reporter recounts the timely story of the Empire State Building, which has sadly reclaimed its status as New York City’s highest peak. After a recap of the icon’s Depression-era construction (and early failure as an investment), Pacelle’s focus shifts to recent skirmishes over its ownership. Who’d have thought that real estate dealings could read like a gossipy novel of intrigue? Though he occasionally bogs things down with fine print, the author assembles a memorable cast of characters, including Leona Helmsley and Donald Trump. But even those tabloid staples are overshadowed by the bickering family of building owner Hideki Yokoi, a Japanese billionaire with a shady past and a shopaholic’s appetite for trophies.