New York Times – Hardcover Business Best Sellers – January 2009
A quick review of the January 2009 New York Times Hardcover Business Best Sellers list and you wouldn’t know we were in a recession. Where are all the financial survival guides? Where are all the “end is near” and Nostradamus tomes?
Instead of the expected flight to junk journalism full of the “how to” books that actually apply to no one, this month’s list is surprisingly loaded with many decent biographies, smart historical perspectives and controversial statistical analyses that require a deeper level of thought than we need for, say, Dave Ramsey’s The Total Money Makeover (Number 8 this month).
Of the quality highlights on January’s list, Outliers at Number 1 could be one of the best books released in 2008. In this great read author Malcolm Gladwell poses the question: why do some people succeed, while those with more talent/brains/brawn never reach their potential? For those of us who still think we can grow up to be anything we want, Gladwell’s challenge of our belief in the self-made man is as uncomfortable as it is depressing. Like we do with the rest of Gladwell’s work, the editors of AskTheManager highly recommend this book.
Another January highlight can be found in a great Warren Buffet biography by Alice Schroeder at Number 2. In fact, The Snowball is not only in the Top 5 on the NY Times list, it was also named to our list of the Ten Best Warren Buffet Books of All Time. Why would we release a list of the Top 10 Buffet Books? At last count, there were forty-seven Warren Buffet biographies currently in print, so we felt you needed a guide to decide which ones are worthy of your time. (To see our list of the 10 Best Warren Buffet Biographies, follow this link.)
The overall best read on this month’s list (showing its staying power more than three years after its release) is Number 11’s Freakonomics. As loyal readers of this blog know, Freakonomics is expected be released as a feature-length documentary later this year. (To read our recent interview with Freakonomics producer Chad Troutwine, follow this link.)
The Top Five – NY Times Business Hardcover Best Sellers January 2009 (to view the entire list, follow this link):
OUTLIERS, by Malcolm Gladwell. (Little, Brown, $27.99.) Why some people succeed — it has to do with luck and opportunities as well as talent — from the author of “Blink” and “The Tipping Point.”
THE SNOWBALL, by Alice Schroeder. (Bantam, $35.) The life of Warren Buffett.
HOT, FLAT, AND CROWDED, by Thomas L. Friedman. (Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $27.95.) How a green revolution can renew America, by the New York Times columnist.
THE ASCENT OF MONEY, by Niall Ferguson. (Penguin Press, $29.95.) A financial history of the world, stressing the link between politics and economics.
CALL ME TED, by Ted Turner with Bill Burke. (Grand Central, $30.) The entrepreneur’s personal story.