Opening Belle Summary & Study Guide

Sherry, Maureen
This Study Guide consists of approximately 40 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of Opening Belle.
This section contains 573 words
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Opening Belle Summary & Study Guide Description

Opening Belle Summary & Study Guide includes comprehensive information and analysis to help you understand the book. This study guide contains the following sections:

This detailed literature summary also contains Quotes and a Free Quiz on Opening Belle by Sherry, Maureen.

The following edition was used to write this study guide: Sherry, Maureen. Opening Belle. Simon & Schuster, 2016.

In 2007, 36-year-old Belle McElroy is a successful trader at her Wall Street investment company, Feagin Dixon, even though the company's masculine culture essentially gives a free pass for men who sexually harass women. After an irritating Christmas party, some of Belle's female coworkers spontaneously meet at a bar, vowing that they will find a way to stop the unjust treatment. Meantime, Belle's home life is also chaotic, as her three young children are watched over by her lazy and irresponsible husband, Bruce.

When a company that Belle was an early investor in sees their stock shoot way up, Belle is invited to a business lunch by Tim Boylan, the CEO of the company that is her largest client. The lunch is a particular honor, as Boyland is a powerful but reclusive Wall Street figure. When Belle arrives at the lunch, she is astonished to find that her former fiancé, Henry, is Tim's right-hand man. A few weeks later, when Belle has travelled to a business conference in Palm Beach, Florida, she is ecstatic to learn that another early investment has paid dividends. She is then surprised when somebody knocks on her door and it is Henry, and they talk deep into the night about the stock markets. However, when Belle moderates a panel of investors for the conference the next morning, Henry cannot help but interrupt.

The women at Belle's company continually meet, and are surprised by the recurring all-company emails from somebody with the alias "Metis," which condemn the company's masculine culture. When Belle expects to receive a large annual bonus, her boss instead forces her to be partners with one of the company's most useless employees. As a result, Belle begins to work more often with the aloof, calculating Kathryn Peterson, learning about how to trade subprime mortgage bonds. Henry begins to regularly send Belle vaguely romantic emails in addition to the necessary business emails. One of the company's highest executives, B. Gruss II, invites a number of the company's senior women to discuss issues of gender in the workplace. Despite Belle's impassioned protests, Gruss is actually very intolerant about hearing any of the women's actual issues, and quickly shuts the meeting down.

Belle becomes increasingly stressed about the risky mortgage investments at work, plus also Bruce's complete listlessness at home. The couple decides to take their family on a vacation to visit Belle's younger sister, Carron, in a small French town. The vacation is restorative, and when Belle learns that the entire stock market has deeply collapsed, she is surprisingly at peace. Henry reveals that he has been assembling an apartment full of Belle's favorite products and clothes in an attempt to win her back, but she says that their relationship, which had ended about a decade ago, finally needs to be brought to a conclusive end. Belle and Bruce also split up, after Belle learns that he has been having sex with his private yoga instructor.

Seven years later, Belle and the women of the company run a boutique financial firm located in the Hamptons, using money from a sexual harassment case brought against Feagin Dixon as the company was collapsing. Belle is at peace working in a more laid-back environment out of the city, and is also content to have occasional playdates, bringing her kids to see Bruce.

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This section contains 573 words
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