Books reviews

Famous or interesting books about investments and finance, reviewed in a throrough and balanced manner.

Greatest Funny Money Books – a must-read list of the best fiction money novels

If you want to have fun + read a good book + learn new finance trivia (or MBA) stuff, there are very few books available. The money literature is enormous, do not get me wrong. But among the more than 5,000 money books published every year there are very few that tick all of the boxes:
– fun to read;
– well written;
– factual / realistic / well documented;
– vivid and
– … Informative.

These being said, there are lots of fantastic money books out there, some of them unforgettable. Here is my list of the light & fiction money books ever written:

1. Niall Ferguson – “The Advent of Money”

Believe me, I studied finance for more than 20 years. Yet, this financial history of the world is so well documented and written, that it is a little encyclopedia on itself. Niall Ferguson writes facts-packed historical books about less dissected topics. “The Advent of Money” is actually the best reference for anyone who wants to understand how we got here. Read it and your understanding of money will change.

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„Everyday Chaos“ by David Weinberger – a HBR Book Review

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To say that the Internet is an integral part of our lives is certainly an understatement. And David Weinberger, the famous American technologist who wrote the first Internet marketing, seems well placed to write about it. In a world where everything happens at once, where technologies combine with AI to deliver more-than-human results, „Everyday Chaos“ comes a bit late. Yet, here it is – a verbal pictorial of how our humble lives are swirled everyday, over-analyzed then categorized by a myriad of machines – equally hardware and software.
Thus the question is – are we humans still self-propelled decision makers anymore? „Everyday Chaos“ says otherwise – we are:
1. Overtaken in decision making accuracy and speed by machines;
2. Dependent on them…
3. … and even more worrying, enjoying this dependency.

In a sci-fi turn, David Weinberger almost asks himself toward the end of the book if we are the masters or the followers in this brave new world. To make a tech joke – „Everyday Chaos“ stops shortly of asking the question, since the machines have already read his book and put a marker on author‘s lesser habits. On a more serious note, what makes us humans starts to become a slightly more marginal competitive advantage. Harvard Business Review Press‘ title is full of factual evidence towards that. AI machines overtake us in chess, medicine diagnostics and constancy of service.

We humans are still programming them. Which gives us the „upper-hand“ illusion – coupled of course with the physical ability to generate electricity from regenerating resources. Fair enough…

On a more practical note, „Everyday Chaos“ advances the theory that various societal organizations (business, governments, NGOs, political parties etc) must accept and embrace the more and more entropic nature of technology. Beneath the apparent surface of a self-defined order, there lie chaotic processes that self-accelerate and regenerate into building their own evolutionary niche. Weinberger‘s thesis from this HBR press book states therefore that one must embrace and ride these chaos waves. Otherwise, ignoring or (worse) retro-justifying them might actually push the respective individuals behind to their niches – which cannot be good in any case.Read More »„Everyday Chaos“ by David Weinberger – a HBR Book Review

“Master Your Next Move” by Michael Watkins – a HBR Book Review

Michael Watkins and his book “The First 90 Days” should sound familliar to any business management reader. The IMD professor has authored one of the most influential books of transitioning into a new role – “The First 90 Days” is considered by many one of the top 50 ever published management book (certainly one of the best sold *1). Should we also be excited that the sequel is about to hit the book shelves?Read More »“Master Your Next Move” by Michael Watkins – a HBR Book Review