It was quite long. Each character was exhaustively introduce which was a bit tedious at times but which subsequently helped the reader to understand how the thinking of each fed into the whole. So, a long book but worth the time to listen to. Really showed how complex the relationships were and are between all of the economies of the world. Eerily similar to 2008 showing how easy it would have been to have had a second great depression.
The explanation of how the economics works. How DOES a nation "fall out of the gold standard?" This book explains it in simple terms that anyone can understand.
How interconnected the world economy really is and always has been. While we talk about "globalism" today as if it is something new, this book shows that, even in the early 1900s, everything was connected even then...
Worth the time to go thru it if you want to understand what happened in 2008 and want to be able to understand what people like Ron Paul are talking about when they speak of "hard money". Will really give you a basis to make up your own mind...
Good Historical Review of Key Money-Men/Bankers who impacted major political events in Europe, the US, and other regions of the world in the early 20th century.
Too many personal details on lifestyles of wealthy families/individuals presented throughout the book that did not seem to be significant to the storyline. Most of book however was relevent to the main topic of financiers who mismanaged world financial resources.. Average read on wealthy power brokers and how they influence world events.
This is a terrific book, very timely and amazingly relevant for anyone with any interest in the world of finance, monetary policy, or international economics. Readers should be warned that it is slow going for even the best readers, but it is not an academic text and once you get into it it is hard to stop listening. It is really a book about the four major central bankers of the interwar era and it is not a treatise about the evils of finance. The central dilemma of the book is actually the debt generated by WWI and the return to the gold standard and its economic consequences for Europe and the United States. It is a great illustration of the need to study and understand economic history in order to understand our world.
My biggest problem getting involved with the book was that it is so dense i needed to keep going back to the beginning to keep track of the different stories and personages. I am a very good reader but I must have restarted the book on three separate occasions....it is not a light read.
That said, once I did get involved I could not put the book down and following it became a good deal easier. I highly recommend sticking it as it is so timely and relevant to the issues of our day.
Lastly, I rated the performance only four stars despite Stephen Hoye's talent as a reader for a very complex text. His narration in many ways is one of the attractions of the book, which could have been read very badly or at the wrong speed or without understanding of concepts of economics and monetary policy that would have made listening impossible. My problem was that throughout the book he uses a very bad British accent when speaking the words of a British personage and inconsistently uses a slight German accent for the German banker. This is not a novel with dialogue. Not only does this affectation not serve the text, it actually detracts from the reading and disturbed the flow of the narration. Luckily he doesn't put on a French accent for the Frenchmen but the whole accent thing was badly done and totally unneeded. Otherwise the performance was excellent.
This book is basically a history textbook, a few chapters of a macroeconomics textbook, and 4 biographies rolled into 1.
It spends more time talking about politics and the outward appearances of the characters rather than getting to the punchline. It's very long and long winded.
The book covers 1914 to 1944. It goes through and attempts to link together the policies, events, and mistakes throughout the time frame. It covers WW2, Gold Standard, etc.
I'm a Joyful Vegan/Artist-Photographer who has become passionately addicted to Audible.
Don't buy this book. It reads like a list of events, a history outline.
The subject has been very well researched by the author and the book goes into detail about all the points that are brought up. I really enjoyed the detail on the subject, but the detail may be a bit much for people who are not interested in monetary economics and banking.