|A brilliant account—character-rich and darkly humorous—of how the U.S. economy was driven over the cliff. Truth really is stranger than fiction. Who better than the author of the signature bestseller Liar’s Poker to explain how the event we were told was impossible—the free fall of the American economy—finally occurred; how the things that we wanted, like ridiculously easy money and greatly expanded home ownership, were vehicles for that crash; and how shareholder demand for profit forced investment executives to eat the forbidden fruit of toxic derivatives.
Michael Lewis’s splendid cast of characters includes villains, a few heroes, and a lot of people who look very, very foolish: high government officials, including the watchdogs; heads of major investment banks (some overlap here with previous category); perhaps even the face in your mirror. In this trenchant, raucous, irresistible narrative, Lewis writes of the goats and of the few who saw what the emperor was wearing, and gives them, most memorably, what they deserve. He proves yet again that he is the finest and funniest chronicler of our times. .
Michael Lewis launched himself onto the scene with his 1989 book LIAR'S POKER about bond sales at Salomon Brothers. With THE BIG SHORT he once again turns his investigatory and critical eye towards the mammoth financial institutions, digging into the 2008-2009 financial crisis that shook Wall Street. Selected by Publishers Weekly as a 2010 Top 10 Book.
"No one writes with more narrative panache about money and finance than Mr. Lewis. [Mr.] Lewis does a nimble job of using his subjects' stories to explicate the greed, idiocies and hypocrisies of a system notably lacking in grown-up supervision, a system filled with firms that 'disdained the need for government regulation in good times' but 'insisted on being rescued by government in bad times.'"
- Michiko Kakutani
"What's so delightful about Lewis's writing is how deftly he explains and demystifies how things really work on Wall Street, even while creating a compelling narrative and introducing us to a cast of fascinating, all-too-human characters."
- Steven Pearlstein
"Lewis brilliantly takes us inside the sub-prime mortgage industry, showing how mortgage companies, homeowners, ratings agencies, and Wall Street traders had incentives to cheat and then consciously ignore the ugly truth. Lewis focuses on those few who saw the doom coming and then bet against the mortgage boom."
- Chuck Leddy
"Lewis is an extraordinary writer, and the people and stories he brings to life here had me as engrossed as I would be by a top-notch novel (I shocked someone on the plane this morning by doubling over with laughter at one particularly wild scene). But he's also a great explainer, and the story that he spins here turns the opaque markets into something that make a certain twisted sense...."
- Cory Doctorow
"In THE BIG SHORT: INSIDE THE DDOOMSDAY MACHINE, Michael Lewis adds to his impressive collection of beautifully written books with a fascinating tale about professional investors who foresaw the financial debacle - and profited from it. In presenting a quirky array of smart, self-serving characters, Lewis intends to help fans of his storytelling understand what went wrong with American capitalism in the early 21st century."||I
- G. Pascal Zachary