(W.W. Norton & Co., $27.95)
Two decades after he “skewered” Wall Street with his account of the 1980s bond market boom, Michael Lewis brings the same insight to the subprime mortgage debacle, said Steven Pearlstein in The Washington Post. The Big Short might not be the most comprehensive or authoritative book about the recent credit crisis, but it’s one of the best. “What’s so delightful about Lewis’ writing is how deftly he explains and demystifies how things really work on Wall Street.” Rather than hunt for villains, Lewis tells the stories of a handful of investors who believed the “system was rotten,” acted on that conviction, and profited handsomely, said Michiko Kakutani in The New York Times. It’s through these individuals—a Wall Street veteran, a doctor-turned-stock-picker, and two unorthodox young traders running a “garage-band hedge fund”—that Lewis is able to “explicate the greed, idiocies, and hypocrisies of a system notably lacking in grown-up supervision.”
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