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Publisher's Summary

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

Critic Reviews

“No one writes with more narrative panache about money and finance than Lewis.” (Michiko Kakutani, New York Times)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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    1,683
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    1,134
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Performance

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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Story

  • 4.4 out of 5.0
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  • 2 Stars
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  • stephen
  • Kansas City, KS, United States
  • 01-25-12

Very interesting and informative

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

This book was definitely a great buy. Very informative. Kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time I was listening to it!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Interesting Overview of a few global economies

Is there anything you would change about this book?

It was an enjoyable and very interesting listen. This book was made up of some interesting facts and observations regarding behaviors and cultural differences between countries.I think the book was missing a few conclusions or even bring some thoughts to an end. I felt the book opened up a whole lot of questions without really giving some kind of an answer.

Would you recommend Boomerang to your friends? Why or why not?

I would have recommended to friends until the author went into great detail about German and their alleged feces fascination. Trying to make some logic about why Germans got into sub-prime...

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • R
  • Mattapoisett, MA, United States
  • 12-24-11

Entertaining but Superficial

Entertaining but hardly definitive. Mr. Lewis jumps to very broad conclusions about certain nationalities based on anecdotal evidence. His comments on the excretory hangups of Germans, for instance, are superficial and gratuitous - to say nothing of somewhat disgusting. The ending of the book is parfticularly weak. Despite these flaws, the narration is very good, and it is an entertaining listen overall.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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good but not his best

Would you try another book from Michael Lewis and/or Dylan Baker?

After the Blind Side and the Big Short, I became a Michael Lewis fan. I got Boomerang immediately after finishing Blind Side. Maybe I knew a little too much about the topics included in Boomerang. They aren't as compelling and don't pull together as much of a story as his other books.

Was Boomerang worth the listening time?

Boomerang is still worth the listening time, and I'll try another Michael Lewis book when it comes out.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Boomerang Review

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

This was a tedious deconstruction of all things Icelandic, German etc etc. I have always been delighted by Michael Lewis's books in the past. This was tedious, repetitious and petty. <br/><br/>The narrator also was awful.

What could Michael Lewis have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

See above. Go back to his original style and get rid of the awful narrator.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

Majorly.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Boomerang?

All.

Any additional comments?

This book should not have been published.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Clifford
  • Boulder, CO, United States
  • 12-10-11

Good thing Lewis is not a banker.

This book wasn’t for you, but who do you think might enjoy it more?

This book, like Moneyball, was an entertaining read. Early in the book, when Lewis claimed that the conversion from euros to dollars was to simply multiply the euro amount by 100 it became difficult to acccept any of the other analysis in the book. This was not just an oversite, the ratio was used throughout the book and lead the reader to some astonishing numbers and conclusions. I continued to read the book, but more for the story and perhaps for the conclusion than for insight. I think Lewis presents himself as a story teller and not a world class economist, but this error was a little over the top. <br/><br/>You really have to like the story. Who would not root for the cod fisherman one day who became an investment banker the next day. Perhaps even better, how the Greek Church scammed the Greek government.

What other book might you compare Boomerang to and why?

Facts, ratios and analysis aside, the book resembled Moneyball, a few assertions leading to grand conclusions. Look at it as entertaining and little more and you'll have an enjoyable read.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Edward
  • Pittsburgh, PA, United States
  • 11-29-11

Less than the sum of its parts

Interesting read with a lot of great stories, but overall, a bit disappointing as a follow-up to the superb "The Big Short."

A lot of the ground was the same as Lewis's previous, but it felt like a lot of bits and pieces that didn't fit into the earlier novel. A few entertaining bits, but far too much of a reliance on national stereotypes.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Charles
  • New York, NY, United States
  • 11-09-11

Long magazine article

LIke Malcolm Gladwell, this book seemed like a bunch of magazine articles put together. Interesting topics for sure, but much less of a book that it could have been.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Stefan
  • Lexington, KY, United States
  • 11-04-11

Entertaining story, but too simplistic

Michael Lewis describes the financial crisis in different countries. The book is full of interesting anecdotes and highly entertaining. His main thesis is that you can see a people’s character when they are in a dark room full of money. This line is too simplistic. The author does not know well the culture of most of the countries he visited or speaks their language, and much of the description is thus superficial. I say this as a German who lived 1/3 of his life in the USA. For example, the better performance of Germany in the current crisis is not so much caused by the alleged ‘anal fixation or holocaust-guilt ‘of the German people, but by a political system that is less dependent on campaign donations from banks and can therefore control the financial sector a little bit better than the US or Greece.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Boomerang

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This is information that we all need to know.

What did you like best about this story?

This was written in a way that follows the money around the world. He interviews with people who influenced it's course and problems with our world wide economy from Subprime - Iceland - Greece, the entire Euro and even Ireland. Engrossing to say the least!

What does Dylan Baker bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

He has a stable voice with an edge of humor.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

Following the reason Bass is such reliable a source; I was about sick when he interviews the Texas Hedgefunder and quotes his advice to buy hard assests like gold, nickels by the millions and firearms.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful