The central idea of this book is interesting, but I have not read a book this badly written in years. I fully agree with another review saying that there is about 10 pages of meat and the rest is just fat. The author jumps between subjects like a frantic circus clown spinning plates on sticks, but in the end you see there is only one plate, one stick and a whole lot of pottery shards. Much ado about nothing. There are so many references to topics coming later in the book that by the middle you can anticipate them and start lip-syncing along. The one part where I disagree with the other reviewers is in the narration - I found the narrator to be clear and well paced. But good narration and a good central concept don't make up for a simply feeble writing style. If this book was re-organised to follow a logical train of thought, leading to a definite conclusion, it would be worth reading. It would also be much, much shorter.
This book contains solid advice. When I first read it in 2007, I found it too conservative and repetitive... but now I retract all of that, because not following the advice in this book cost me half of my savings in the meltdown of 2008.
The lesson here can be applied in the good times as well as the bad. As for being repetitive, I believe that it is the reason for me still remembering it all - more than two years later. And since investing is a long-term thing, that is exactly what you need - advice that sticks.
The narration is okay, and you need to pay some attention to terminology so as not to get lost... but even if you don't, it is written in such a way that the essential lesson comes through, even over time.
It was easy to be critical back in 2007 when a monkey throwing bits of fruit at a stock listing and picking the juicy ones could make money. It is when things go wrong that we learn who's advice is really valuable. In my opinion, you can find some of that in this book.
Of my growing library of audiobooks (now at 53 books), this is probably my favourite audiobook. As a rule, I don't read books more than once, but I am listening to this one for the fourth time now. The narration is very good and the writing style is pretty good (odd music selections), but the content is the clincher.
This book opened my eyes to some lies, fallacies and misconceptions which are even found in most modern economics textbooks, and helped me to distinguish between truth and fiction. I found the criticism of Keynesian theories the most insightful. On a recent university course on micro economics, the lecturer asked me where I had studied economics before, but of course I had simply read this book. It really helped in my studies and I have now also bought a copy in paperback for reference.
When reading through the other reviews of this book, you will notice that most of the criticisms come from people with seemingly little or no background in economics or who seem to have only a passing interest in the subject. Those who have some background on the subject just love it. That does not mean this book is not for beginners or only for professional economists - on the contrary. It is clear and easy to follow on all levels of preceding knowledge... but the more you know about economics, the more you will enjoy this book.
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