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June 26, 2008

News & Opinion: Magazines Reviewing Books

By: Dylan Schleicher @ 8:15 PM – Filed under: Management & Workplace Culture

There's another round of book reviews from some of the big business magazines. My personal favorite is from Business Week and Christopher Farrell. In an article entitled "The Squeeze on the American Worker," Farrell takes a look at two books with similar themes, Peter Gosselin's High Wire and Steven Greenhouse's The Big Squeeze. This paragraph sums the books' importance nicely:
Gosselin and Greenhouse are award-winning journalists with the Los Angeles Times and The New York Times, respectively. Not surprisingly, both books are well-written with clear themes and telling anecdotes. Neither book is a revelation, of course, since much has already been said in recent years about America's shredded social safety net, middle-class families' ever-more-vexing economic circumstances, and the distressing working conditions faced by low-income employees. Instead, what makes the two volumes timely and important is their powerful, authoritative evidence that a lot of people are rightly anxious about their economic prospects--worries exacerbated by an election season and ongoing economic woes.

Next, we have Roger Lowenstein's review of Steve Miller's The Turnaround Kid for Conde Naste Portfolio. Oddly enough, there's a line about the author in this review that relates to the theme of the books in Inc.:
Though a down-to-earth guy--one who never outgrew his lumberjack plaids--Miller cannot help sounding preachy when he talks about the great things he did for America by driving factory wages down near the level of those of Wal-Mart employees.

That sounds like quite a knock, but Lowenstein does go on to state that "Still, this is a highly engrossing memoir" and that "No one executive can fix all of corporate America's problems, but Miller came close." Kate wrote a post about the book upon its release. You can read that here.
The Economist has a tale of two Arvinds--Panagariya and Subramanian--and their respective books, India: The Emerging Giant and India's Turn. I don't believe India's Turn is available yet in the U.S., but according to all reviews I've read, we're not missing much (Subramanian is known to be a great thinker, but every review I've read bemoans the poor editing). India: The Emerging Giant, on the other hand, looks fascinating. From The Economist:

Mr Panagariya's book is the capstone of a career, a sustained work of scholarship. It demands a lot of its readers, and amply repays the investment. The author's father told him: "Take your time, but write a definite book on India." The son did not disappoint.

Finally, we have Inc. Magazine's skimmer's guide to the latest business books, this month featuring Tuned In by Craig Stull, Phil Myers, and David Meerman Scott.
Happy Reading!

About Dylan Schleicher


Dylan Schleicher has been a part of the 800-CEO-READ claque since 2003. Even though he's stayed on at the company, he has not stayed put. After beginning in shipping & receiving, he joined customer service and accounting before moving into his current, highly elliptical orbit of duties overseeing the ChangeThis and In the Books websites, the company's annual review of books and in-house design. He lives with his wife and two children in the Washington Heights neighborhood on Milwaukee's West Side.