Books

Saturday 26 July 2014

Book your business fan in for a stockingfiller

Published 12/12/2013|18:31

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Antifragile by Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Bailout by Nail Barofsky
Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg

Here's a list of recommended US business books for the business anorak on your Christmas shopping list.

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After the Music Stopped: The Financial Crisis, the Response and the Work Ahead by Alan Blinder (Penguin) Blinder, a former vice chairman of the Federal Reserve, proves adept at making accessible the complex events leading to the financial crisis and the ways in which policy makers responded.

Antifragile: Things That Gain From Disorder by Nassim Nicholas Taleb (Random House) The author of "The Black Swan" returns with a book about thriving amid disorder. He focuses on systems that aren't resistant to stress but actually profit from it. The human body, for example, gets stronger with the stress of exercise, weaker with indolence.

Are You Smart Enough to Work at Google? by William Poundstone (Little, Brown) A guide to brain-bending interview questions asked at Google and other innovative companies. "You are shrunk to the height of a nickel and thrown into a blender," one begins. What do you do in the 60 seconds before the blades start whirring?

Bailout by Neil Barofsky (Free Press) The former special inspector general policing the $700bn Troubled Asset Relief Program lifts the lid on the US Treasury and settles scores in this angry yet illuminating memoir.

The Art of the Sale by Philip Delves Broughton (Penguin) The journalist who brought us "Ahead of the Curve," a chronicle of how he earned an MBA at Harvard Business School, uncovers the dark arts of sales -- a discipline absent from the HBS curriculum.

The Battle of Bretton Woods by Benn Steil (Princeton University Press). This masterful account dismantles the idyllic picture of the 1944 Bretton Woods international economic conference, situating it firmly in the tense atmosphere of the final months of World War II.

Engines of Change by Paul Ingrassia (Simon & Schuster) Ingrassia, who shared a 1993 Pulitzer Prize for writing on management turmoil at General Motors, presents a quirky history of American culture as seen through 15 cars.

Circle of Friends by Charles Gasparino (Harper Business) While the markets were coming undone in 2008, securities regulators were busy investigating the wrong crime, Gasparino says.

Instead of digging into the fraud that helped fuel the crisis, they were on a crusade to end insider trading.

Down the Up Escalator: How the 99 Percent Live in the Great Recession by Barbara Garson (Doubleday). Garson writes less about the terrible things that have happened to Americans since the crash than about the resigned/resourceful ways they're coping.

The Hour Between Dog and Wolf by John Coates (Fourth Estate/Penguin Press) During his 12 years at Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch and Deutsche Bank, Coates began to wonder whether testosterone and other hormones were impairing the judgment of traders -- and fuelling bubbles and busts. So he retrained as a neuroscientist and conducted tests on trading floors.

He synthesizes his findings in this highly speculative and absorbing book.

Lean In: Women, Work and the Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg (Knopf) The Facebook executive offers advice to women, urging them not to pull back from career challenges years before having children.

LAURIE MUCHNICK

Irish Independent

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