Whitaker Wright led a truly extraordinary life. From his humble beginnings as an impoverished preacher, he crossed the Atlantic to prospect for gold, surviving a Native American massacre and making his fortune. When the bubble burst, he returned to England, and soon became one of the world’s richest men, entertaining the Kaiser and the Prince of Wales on his steam yacht. But his downfall was as dramatic as his ascent. When his financial empire – built on fraud – went belly up, the trail of furious investors stretched all the way to the Prime Minister. He was sentenced to jail: only to spring a last dreadful surprise ... Drawing on family papers and archives from around the world, this compelling account of Wright’s life offers startling insight into the mind of the ultimate gambler and conman.