Posts filed under 'Book Review'

Book Review – “ABC” by Justine Wollaston

Justine Wollaston’s new book “ABC” is a wacky and enjoyable story for a young child learning the alphabet.  Granted, I am biased as she is my sister, but for $12 this colorful book is difficult to beat for its artistic and educational merit.  More can be seen at www.houseofjustine.com.  Request a copy via email.

Add comment October 1st, 2006

Book Review – “The New Economy of Nature – The Quest to Make Conservation Profitable”

by Gretchen C. Daily and Katherine Ellison

This is a must read for those who wish to understand the status of the environment in our current capitalist system and the almost disregard capitalism has in quantifying and valuing environmental benefits.  If you think capitalism has evolved to its most advanced state, books such as this will help clarify that many elements of our society are not correctly valued by the simple supply/demand equation of current economics.  Countries like Costa Rica are beginning to recognize true environmental benefits from the policies they have enacted to protect their natural resources.  Our environment and our ecosytems are not limitless, though human kind has been living under that premise of ‘limitless nature’ since our dawn.  In the near future, new business opportunities will emerge in the valuing and trading of environmental benefits.  We already see this process starting with the carbon trading system and the New York watershed protection.  Environmentalism may finally develop a name for itself as a capitalistic enterprise…and none too soon. 

“As the saying goes, a woman’s work is never done-nor fairly compensated-and this is nowhere truer than in the case of Mother Nature.  Much of Nature’s labor has enormous and obvious value, which has failed to win respect in the marketplace until recently…

Historically, all these labors of Nature have been thought of as free. And with the exception of the production of a few specific goods, such as farm crops and timber, the use of Nature’s services is actually quite startlingly unregulated.  Despite our assiduous watch over forms of capital-physical (homes, cars, factories), financial (cash, savings accounts, corporate stocks), and human (skills and knowledge)-we haven’t even taken measures of the ecosystem capital stocks that produce these most vital of labors.  We lack a formal system of appraising or monitoring the value of natural assets, and we have few means of insuring them against damage or loss…

Even more striking is how rarely investment in ecosystem capital are rewarded economically.  Typically, property owners are not compensated for the services the natural assets on their land provide to society.  With rare exception, owners of coastal wetlands are not paid for the abundance of seafood the wetlands nurture, nor are owners of tropical forests compensated for that ecosystem’s contribution to the pharmaceutical industry and climate stability….

As Stanford University biologist Peter Vitousek has said, ‘we’re the first generation with tools to understand changes in the earth’s system caused by human activity, and the last with the opportunity to influence the course of many of the changes now rapidly under way [as human society and the environment reach critical thresholds].’ ”

See more at Amazon.com – The New Economy of Nature

Add comment September 18th, 2006

Book Review – “The Satanic Verses” by Salman Rushdie

A bit of a slugfest given Rushdie’s remarkable knowledge and use of the English language, but all-in-all a good read.  If you have the patience to sit through a 500 page novel spanning past, present and fantasy interludes, interspersed with religious history that leaves you wondering what is fact versus fiction, then this is your book.  Best way to read this novel?  Don’t try to establish a point of reference but simply go with Rushdie’s fantastical, sardonic and compelling flow.

See more at Amazon.com -

The Satanic Verses: A Novel (Bestselling Backlist)

Add comment September 12th, 2006

Book Review – “The Money Game” by Adam Smith

“The Money Game” is a classic and must-read for any individual fascinated by the market mechanism and market psychology.  Writing during the period following the Great Depression, ’The Money Game’ approaches market analysis not simply from the often two dimensional tactics of technical and fundamental analysis, but with an eye towards market psychology and trading psychology.

See more at Amazon.com – Money Game

Add comment August 4th, 2006

Book Review – “Freakonomics” by Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner

Freakonomics is an easy and insightful read worth the time.  The authors ask and discuss some interesting social questions with an emphasis on doing so from an alternative viewpoint that counters the typical methodology by which society evaluates an issue.  But if for nothing else, read the book because it has a really cool image of an orangeapple.

See more at Amazon.com -Freakonomics [Revised and Expanded]: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything

Here is the official website: http://www.freakonomics.com/.

Add comment July 26th, 2006

Book Review – “Security Analysis” by Benjamin Graham

This veritable tomb of information on security analysis is a must-read for any investor keen on value investing.  Considered the ‘investor’s Bible’, its contents should be kept close to heart and mind when making investing decisions.  I am constantly trying to remind myself of investing fundamentals whenever I become overly emotional with the market and keeping this book close to my investing thoughts helps me achieve that.

See more at Amazon.com -Security Analysis

Add comment June 12th, 2006

Book Review – “Bull’s Eye Investing” by John Mauldin

I am a fan of Mauldin’s weekly newsletters in which he graciously provides the valuable insight of professional investors and market commentators to the general public. Click here to sign up: www.investorsinsight.com. With that said, his book is most informative and a fascinating read.

See more at Amazon.com -Bull’s Eye Investing: Targeting Real Returns in a Smoke and Mirrors Market

Add comment June 10th, 2006


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