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Published By Forefront Books
Distributed By Simon & Schuster

"Characters come alive and the plot is compelling.  Like House of Gucci, this novel offers a peek inside a  fashion empire, and a family in turmoil with a father and son locked in a titanic struggle for power."

—FRANK DOROFF, Former Vice-Chairman, Bloomingdales


“Martin Sneider’s debut novel is a jewel of a book. If you like great drama, great writing, and great clothes and great shoes, SHELF LIFE is a must-read.”

—RUCHAMA KING, New York Times-Bestselling Author


“I have always loved the retail business for the part we could play in someone’s life—the graduation suit, the wedding dress, and the careers we would build. SHELF LIFE took me back to the history, the families, the drive, and ambition of creative individuals to start and run a dynamic business and the times that influenced their decisions. I couldn’t put it down.”

—MAXINE K. CLARK, Founder, Build-A-Bear Workshop


“A terrific novel from a retailing pro who has written a page-turner with a powerful and triumphant conclusion. A riveting tale of a family wracked by betrayal and revenge as its once-successful fashion empire crumbles. A great read.”

—PETER J. SOLOMON, Founder, Solomon Partners


“SHELF LIFE  is an intensely readable multigenerational family story that jumps off the page, captivates the reader, and teaches about love, the loss of love, business, and fashion. Martin Sneider is a modern-day Herman Wouk. He understands human nature and writes with a love of his characters and his overall subjects—how we live, love, and shop. A great read.”

—MICHAEL LEVIN, New York Times-Bestselling Author

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About The Book

SHELF LIFE is a Jewish–American family saga about the rise of the St. Louis Feldmans' fashion retailing empire and how their business splits and ultimately devastates the family.

As the son of Max Feldman, the self-proclaimed “sodbuster from Omaha” and brilliant founder of the successful fashion shoe store chain Fratelli Massimo, Josh Feldman has always known his destiny . . . working alongside his father and one day succeeding him, a career path promised to him by Max. Starting with one store in the 1950s financed by his mother’s trust fund, his father has taken advantage of the heyday of shopping malls to grow a St. Louis–based business to hundreds of locations across the United States. At industry events, he’s not just some Midwestern family business boss but a rock star courted by suppliers, shopping center developers, and the media.

Josh is eager to step into his father’s role. Unlike his charismatic brother and his sophisticated New York-born and -bred mother, who inherited her powerful father’s cunning but is more interested in literature and raising her sons, Josh is passionate about the family business. He is his father’s son and presumed successor. But as he comes of age, starts a family of his own, and works his way up in the business, Josh slowly begins to understand his father’s penchant for treachery. With Max’s ruthless ambition and his drive to be celebrated for his success, will Josh ever be allowed to succeed him?

When the family is divided over the future of the business, Josh must face the fact that his father's pledge to him may have exceeded its shelf life.

About The Author

A fashion retailing legend, Martin Sneider has been a leader in the shoe and clothing industries for more than five decades and has served as a multi-award-winning adjunct professor of retailing at the Olin School of Business at Washington University since 1992. At the Olin School of Business, Martin created and taught a course devoted to luxury goods merchandising and marketing that included trips with students to Milan, Paris, and London to visit the showrooms of Armani, Gucci, Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Burberry, and Cartier. 

A fourth-generation retailer, Martin started as a shoe salesman and rose to president, co-CEO, and chief merchant of one of the nation’s largest fashion shoe and apparel specialty chains. He served on the Alumni Board of Directors of Harvard Business School, was chairman of St. Louis Children’s Hospital, and received the Distinguished Alumni award from Washington University. He is the author of a highly acclaimed nonfiction book on the shoe industry. SHELF LIFE is his first novel and the first of a projected series of four novels about fashion and family. Martin has two children and four granddaughters and lives in St. Louis, Missouri, and New York City.

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