Business and Economics – Money, Wealth, & Power

The Big Short : Inside The Doomsday Machine / Michael Lewis

The author examines the causes of the U.S. stock market crash of 2008 and its relation to overpriced real estate, bad mortgages, shareholder demand for excessive profits, and the growth of toxic derivatives.

Fast Food Nation : The Dark Side Of The All-American Meal / Eric Schlosser

Analyzing the influence of the fast food industry on American society, an award-winning journalist explores the homogenization of American culture and the impact of the fast food industry on modern-day health, economy, politics, popular culture, entertainment, food production, and more.

The First Tycoon : The Epic Life Of Cornelius Vanderbilt / T.J. Stiles

A biography of the combative man whose genius and force of will created modern capitalism, documenting how Vanderbilt helped launch the transportation revolution, propel the Gold Rush, reshape Manhattan, and invent the modern corporation.

Fordlandia : The Rise And Fall Of Henry Ford’s Forgotten Jungle City / Greg Grandin

The stunning, never-before-told story of the quixotic attempt to recreate small-town America in the heart of the Amazon, “Fordlandia” depicts a desperate quest to salvage the bygone America that the Ford factory system did much to dispatch.

Freakonomics : A Rogue Economist Explores The Hidden Side Of Everything / Steven D. Levitt And Stephen J. Dubner

Which is more dangerous, a gun or a swimming pool? What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common? Why do drug dealers still live with their moms? How much do parents really matter? What kind of impact did Roe v. Wade have on violent crime? These may not sound like typical questions for an economist to ask–but Levitt is not a typical economist. He studies the stuff and riddles of everyday life–from cheating and crime to sports and child rearing–and his conclusions regularly turn the conventional wisdom on its head. The authors show that economics is, at root, the study of incentives–how people get what they want, or need, especially when other people want or need the same thing. In this book, they set out to explore the hidden side of everything. If morality represents how we would like the world to work, then economics represents how it actually does work.

Nickel And Dimed : On (Not) Getting By In America / Barbara Ehrenreich

In an attempt to understand the lives of Americans earning near-minimum wages, Ehrenreich works as a waitress in Florida, a cleaning woman in Maine, and a sales clerk in Minnesota.

Outliers : The Story Of Success / Malcolm Gladwell

Identifies the qualities of successful people, posing theories about the cultural, family, and idiosyncratic factors that shape high achievers, in a resource that covers such topics as the secrets of software billionaires and why the Beatles earned their fame.

Steve Jobs / Walter Isaacson

Based on more than forty interviews with Jobs conducted over two years as well as interviews with more than a hundred family members, friends, adversaries, competitors, and colleagues; Walter Isaacson has written a riveting story of the roller-coaster life and searingly intense personality of a creative entrepreneur whose passion for perfection and ferocious drive revolutionized six industries: personal computers, animated movies, music, phones, tablet computing, and digital publishing.

The Tipping Point : How Little Things Can Make A Big Difference / Malcolm Gladwell

The tipping point is that magic moment when an idea, trend, or social behavior crosses a threshold, tips, and spreads like wildfire. Just as a single sick person can start an epidemic of the flu, so too can a small but precisely targeted push cause a fashion trend, the popularity of a new product, or a drop in the crime rate. This widely acclaimed bestseller, in which Malcolm Gladwell explores and brilliantly illuminates the tipping point phenomenon, is already changing the way people throughout the world think about selling products and disseminating ideas.

 

List Created 2/18/15 – James Hartmann

Adapted from Martin, William P. The Mother of All Booklists: The 500 Most Recommended Nonfiction Reads for Ages 3 to 103. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2015. Print.

Posted in Adult Staff Picks, Reading Lists and tagged , , .