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)
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.
great investigative journalism, blending an explanation of the sovereign debt crisis with absolutely UNBELIEVABLE and entertaining stories
the wryness of his voice fit the material well
I laughed out loud several times
yes, though it is so fabulously pessimistic and tosses things around without, I suspect, fully investigating them.
he says, for example, that there are no Jews left in Germany. according to wikipedia,
freakonomics. though the folks who wrote that seem to have taken much more care to get their facts straight.
Excellent. Dylan Baker is a great narrator and captured the soul of this book wonderfully.
Michael Lewis takes a complex financial mess and sorts it out so anyone can understand just how seriously our global society has screwed up the world economy.
I was most moved by the situation in Greece and how vividly he describes the situation.
While I did chuckle a few times (because the author is funny here and there to lighten the mood), most of the book is set to make the reader disgusted with the behavior of the few financial jet setters and self-interested politicians that created this crisis out of greed, self-ambition, or ignorance.
Good book, scary to hear the reality of the facts. I prefer the narrator from the Big Short, but overall it was a good listen.
factual, thorough, unnerving
The fact that this is not fiction, but what Lewis writes about has and is still happening today.
Yes. He is not my favorite reader, he can be a bit monotone at times, but he has good enunciation which I consider more important.
It scared the hell out of me.
This book needs to be listened to by anyone who wants to understand the default and Euro crisis in Europe. It goes to show that we seem to never learn from history.
I would (and have) recommend this to a friend. It is yet another great Michael Lewis book about economics. It is a must read to understand the challenges that lie ahead in the world.
There are no characters in this book.
I have not.
I did want to listen to this all in one sitting. I could not get enough of it.
Another great Michael Lewis book.
I would listen again as there are a lot of interesting detail that I may have missed and / or want to review. The subject is complicated and needs to be fully understood.
The sense of humor and the funny sagas about an issue that is not fundamentally funny, but there are times in life you just have to find the humor in events even though it hurts.
One event that stuck out a little was the fisherman turned Investment banker literally overnight.
Yes I have and he is a fabulous orator and story teller. I will seek out his other narrations.
This is my third Michael Lewis book and I plan to read them all eventually.
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