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Boomerang

Travels in the New Third World
Lewis, Michael (Book - 2011 )
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Boomerang
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WW Norton
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.Icelanders wanted to stop fishing and become investment bankers. 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.Michael Lewis's investigation of bubbles beyond our shores is so brilliantly, sadly hilarious that it leads the American reader to a comfortable complacency: oh, those foolish foreigners. But when he 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.

Baker & Taylor
As Pogo once said, "We have met the enemy and he is us." In this book the author offers a scathing assessment of fiscal blunders in foreign lands, and details how economic repercussions are sure to be felt on American soil. Financial bubbles grew and burst, not only in the U.S. but in countries as diverse as Iceland, Germany, and Greece. Mixing humor with prescient insight, he depicts a precarious situation that demands attention. The tsunami of cheap credit that rolled across the planet between 2002 and2008 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. Icelanders wanted to stop fishing and become investment bankers. The Greeks wanted to turn their country into a piänata 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. This investigation of bubbles beyond our shores is so sadly hilarious that it leads the American reader to a comfortable complacency: oh, those foolish foreigners. But when he turns a merciless eye on California and Washington, D.C., 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. - Publisher.

Norton Pub
As Pogo once said, "We have met the enemy and he is us."
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.

Icelanders wanted to stop fishing and become investment bankers. The Greeks wanted to turn their country into a piñata 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.

Michael Lewis's investigation of bubbles beyond our shores is so brilliantly, sadly hilarious that it leads the American reader to a comfortable complacency: oh, those foolish foreigners. But when he 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.

Book News
The rising tide of cheap credit, default credit swaps, and other contributors to the continuing global financial crisis are, for most of us, too complex to grasp. But author and finance journalist Lewis knows how to explain those intricacies, even if it requires coming up with characters so weird and cartoonish they almost certainly had to be faked. They weren't. Readers will meet a bright monk who figured out how to play Greek capitalism to save his failing monastery and a cod fisherman who, with three days training, became a currency trader for an Icelandic bank. His book has that rare combination of traits: educational and entertaining. Annotation ©2012 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Baker
& Taylor

Presents the author's darkly humorous investigation of the effects of the 2008 financial bubble on other countries before taking aim at greedy debtors in California and Washington, D.C.
The author of The Big Short describes the effect that the bubble of cheap credit readily available to almost anyone between 2002 and 2008 had on countries beside the U.S., including Iceland, Greece and Germany. 200,000 first printing.

Authors: Lewis, Michael (Michael M.)
Statement of Responsibility: Michael Lewis
Title: Boomerang
travels in the new Third World
Publisher: New York : W.W. Norton, c2011
Edition: 1st ed
Characteristics: 213 p. ; 22 cm.
Subject Headings: Global Financial Crisis, 2008-2009 International finance Financial crises United States History 21st century
Topical Term: Global Financial Crisis, 2008-2009
International finance
Financial crises
LCCN: 2011028241
ISBN: 9780393081817
0393081818
Branch Call Number: 330.9051 L
Research Call Number: *R-SIBL HB3717 2008 .L49
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Jan 17, 2013
  • Khrushchev rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

A fun romp through the economics of countries newly introduced to the woes of a downturn. Lewis explains the reasons behind each one's individual reasons for collapse quite well (though you would probably need at least some prior knowledge of economics to gain the full enjoyment this book offers). Well researched, well written, well done Michael Lewis.

Dec 17, 2012
  • Sanrin rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Michael Lewis asks the question, "What would you do if you were in a room alone with a pile of money?" He poses this question to Ireland, Greece, Iceland, Germany and the US, and demonstrates how each country responded in a unique way, and why. Intelligently written and very insightful in helping understand the financial crisis in different contexts. Also makes you wonder when California will implode ...

Dec 17, 2012
  • LazyNeko rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

A droll financial-disaster tour through Iceland, Greece, Ireland, Germany, and California. It would all be highly amusing if it weren't so sadly true.

Oct 04, 2012
  • splibrary55 rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

Good overall, chatty analysis and summary of what went wrong in several countries' economies including Iceland, Ireland and Greece. Lacks a clear plan of action to fix/avoid these disasters, and leaves the reader wondering why Lewis does not step up to a change agent role.

This book is better than I expected. I finished it from cover to cover in two days.

Sep 01, 2012
  • scathing_haiku rated this: 3.5 stars out of 5.

At least Vallejo / can boast to builders that they / need not search for elves

Aug 02, 2012
  • binational rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

The best explanation - by far - that I have read about the Greek economic debacle. Corruption is embedded so deep in Greek culture that one can easily understand the reluctance by Germans and other northern Europeans to bail out people who resolutely refuse to pay taxes yet insist to retire on public pensions at age 55. Blew my mind.

Jun 26, 2012
  • PrairieStar rated this: 4.5 stars out of 5.

Well written and humorous but the subject matter makes you want to cry while laughing. One chapter was about California budget and pension woes.

May 09, 2012
  • VPL Career Commons rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

One of the great things about Michael Lewis is how well he writes for the lay audience. He has a great sense of humour and irony and an eye for the absurd. These are serious matters and if his light touch helps to get more people thinking about our financial situation we can only applaud. There will be many more volumes written about the mess we find ourselves in. Enjoy the lighthearted ones!

May 04, 2012
  • TtamioO rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Michael Lewis tells us humorously why Europe is in the serious financial trouble it's in, and then not so humorously why the U.S. is next. It's most likely he will not be taking a another vacation anytime soon to the countries whose people he had so thoroughly eviscerated and hopefully if he need the services of the police or fire department, they will not recognize his name.

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Apr 24, 2012
  • elinpat rated this: 5 stars out of 5.

Hilarious account of what went wrong in Europe in those countries so badly in debt. Also a pretty solid summary of how things transpird.

Mar 08, 2012
  • AnneDromeda rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

A while back, I reviewed a Michael Lewis book called *The Big Short*, all about the personalities and events that built the Great Recession. In the time it took to write and release that book, Lewis stumbled across a few shrewd financiers who were predicting a global crash based on the same kind of accounting principles that shook America. Lewis initially dismissed these characters as people who'd gotten lucky predicting one crash, and now thought they had a talent for predicting crises. But, by the time he was promoting *The Big Short*, Iceland and Greece were deep in trouble, and Lewis knew there was more to the story.<br />

*Boomerang*, then, is all about how the American banking system's creative approach to credit tranching spread round the world. Again, Lewis takes the time to introduce readers to the characters making the big financial decisions. He makes some broad and questionable arguments extending generalized national character traits (Icelandic, Greek, Irish, German) to their money management techniques, but the effect is meant to be humorous and it is. In fact, the whole book's tone is gleefully irreverent – toward the money gods, toward religion, and toward the crisis itself. It's not that the recession hasn’t had dire consequences; Lewis knows it has, and that it may get worse. He's fundamentally optimistic, though, and willing to see the abundant humour in the decision making processes of nations, banks and individuals who inadvertently set up the crisis. Either it gets better or it doesn't – either way, you have to laugh. With its wry approach and clear, approachable style, *Boomerang* is recommended for any readers interested in the factors driving the credit crisis around the world.

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Dec 17, 2012
  • LazyNeko rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

What happens when a society loses its ability to self-regulate, and insists on sacrificing its long-term self-interest for short-term rewards? How does the story end?

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Version pocillo (pocillo) Last updated 2014/08/26 17:01