From the #1 New York Times best-selling author of The Big Short, Liar’s Poker and The Blind Side!
The tsunami of cheap credit that rolled across the planet between 2002 and 2008 was more than a simple financial phenomenon: it was temptation, offering entire societies the chance to reveal aspects of their characters they could not normally afford to indulge.
The Greeks wanted to turn their country into a pinata stuffed with cash and allow as many citizens as possible to take a whack at it. The Germans wanted to be even more German; the Irish wanted to stop being Irish.
The trademark of Michael Lewis’s best sellers is to tell an important and complex story through characters so outsized and outrageously weird that you’d think they have to be invented. (You’d be wrong.) In Boomerang, we meet a brilliant monk who has figured out how to game Greek capitalism to save his failing monastery; a cod fisherman who, with three days’ training, becomes a currency trader for an Icelandic bank; and an Irish real estate developer so outraged by the collapse of his business that he drives across the country to attack the Irish Parliament with his earth-moving equipment.
Lewis’s investigation of bubbles beyond our shores is so brilliantly, sadly hilarious that it leads the American listener to a comfortable complacency: Oh, those foolish foreigners. But when Lewis turns a merciless eye on California and Washington DC, we see that the narrative is a trap baited with humor, and we understand the reckoning that awaits the greatest and greediest of debtor nations.
©2011 Michael Lewis (P)2011 Simon & Schuster
“No one writes with more narrative panache about money and finance than Lewis.” (Michiko Kakutani, New York Times)
The compartmental nature of the explanation of the global financial mess.
The thought that a community could be so broke that they could only employ one person and that person would be an insolvency controller.
I loved his sarcasm.
I felt ill lots of the time because I knew that lots of the stereotypes were accurate.
We need another book about the success of communities to sovereignties to overcome insolvency.
This book uses everyday language to explain the various economic crises we've seen around the world. The author does an excellent job of explaining, and he does it in an entertaining way. I think anyone who worries about the U.S. money stability should read this book.
First, a bow to Dylan Baker, the narrator. He does a fantastic job reading this book.
Lewis is a great story teller and makes this dry subject very interesting and, at time, very funny.
Perhaps a bit too short... 7 hours. Makes me wonder what else is worth knowing.
Love how the different countries become, in them selves, characters in the book with their own personalities.
The Germans. The Germans over concern for
Michael Lewis can tell interesting stories about the people behind the headlines and he does it here again. It did feel a lot like the Big Short continued in a way.
Brought it home with Vallejo.
have not heard him before
no extreme reaction
Great book. Goes beyond the headlines.
It's just beginning
Tempo and humor
If you listen to the talking heads giving us the news you might think there is light at the end of our short term tunnel. WRONG! We are in for one big train wreck and I don't think there is any way to stop it. Greed over powers reason every time.
I have been a fan of Michael Lewis's writing since Liar's Poker, which I re-read during the peak (or should I say nadir) of the financial crisis and general panic. It was fascinating to see how he presaged what would come of the securitization of mortgages - back in the 80's and 90's! Boomerang is a fantastic follow up to Lewis's equally enthralling account of the mortgage bust in The Big Short. I finished this book while traveling in Ireland on business, and it really brought the urban landscape to life there for me. Excellent author, scarily interesting topic, I highly recommend listening to this book.
Once through for this is enough. I'd read many of these articles in Vanity Fair before, but it was a good refresher.
Since this is a compilation, it's a little different than others of his, but very user-friendly.
This book is an easy way to understand some of the financial issues of the world. The book is easy to listen to in short bursts - each chapter addresses another area of the world.
I am only a third of the way through and felt compelled to tell you that this is a great book, at least so far. I can't see it getting worse, just better and better. His sense of humour is perfect and his candour is sometimes cringing when you imagine yourself listening to Michael Lewis' opinion about you. He pulls no punches and I wouldn't put it past countries to ban him or set people out to get him. I follow the news, and the news around the European debacle fairly closely, but you don't get this deep via the news. It is amazing how these countries operated. They seem like kids in a candy store. I am a quarter Icelandic and he sure trashes us. Then the Irish and...look out Greeks! I don't think any country will come out looking good. Even the Germans, who are the supposed saviours of this crisis (Greek vote is tomorrow!), get trashed by him. Nicely, convincingly, but still trashed. Loving it.
I enjoyed listening to this book. Easy to understand; it was funny in parts but most of all, it's scary how much debt these countries have accumulated. The narrator is fine, but sounds a little smirkish at times. If you want to be able to talk intelligently about the European debt crisis, this book is a great start to understanding how it started, how the countries are dealing with it, and the magnitude of the problem.
I do wish it were a little longer and went into more detail on more of the countries. But, Michael Lewis has a knack to taking the complex and making it simple and entertaining. I have recommended it already to all my work colleagues.
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