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Book Review

History of Tycoons Requires Time Investment

August 8th 2007

Book Covers - The Last Tycoons Book Cover

William D. Cohan. The Last Tycoons: The Secret History of Lazard Frères & Co., The World’s Most Elite and Enigmatic Investment Bank. April 2008, Broadway. 752 pages.

Though well researched and authoritative, this history of the Lazard Frères’ investment firm may not be of interest to those not involved with the firm.

Corporate histories and exposés are dicey things. Even when the subject is fairly familiar, there still needs to be a compelling narrative with good guys, bad guys and enough revelations to keep things interesting. And if you are an insider, ex-employee, client or are otherwise well acquainted with the company being profiled, you are bound to be more interested and aware than other readers.

For example, I once shared a book on the Coca-Cola Co. with a manager who formerly worked for the firm. He later reported that he’d enjoyed it but that its picture of the organization was quite incomplete.

No kidding!

A book providing a complete and detailed portrait of any company would have to be so huge that it would be unwieldy and so detailed that it would be virtually unreadable, making it unlikely to be widely read and to attain popular success.

The Last Tycoons comes close, which is not necessarily a good thing for all concerned.

Author William Cohan worked at the Wall Street firm of Lazard Frères for six years and was later a managing director at JPMorgan Chase & Co. and an investigative journalist. In writing this book, which has been promoted as the first full look at the firm, a major financial powerhouse, he brings his ample professional accomplishments in both fields to bear. Read more ..


Authors on Tour

Joyce Bender Interviews Edwin Black on Eugenics

May 18th 2006

Twins-Height-Verschuer

Award-winning author Edwin Black has reached out to the disability community during his recent book tour for his best-selling book War Against the Weak. In a reent interview on Disability Matters, Black laid out why the disabled community today must be concerned with the eugenic crusades of decades gone by. A transcript follows.

"Disability Matters"

May 9, 2006 2:00 PM

Audio Version

Host:

Joyce Bender

Guest:

Edwin Black

Welcome to "Disability Matters" With your host, Joyce Bender. All comments, views and opinions expressed on the show are solely those of the host, guest and callers. Now the host of "Disability Matters." Here's Joyce Bender.

Joyce Bender: Welcome to the show and if you're listening to the show today you are going to hear one of the best shows we've had in three years. So you make sure if you've heard the show and your friends have not, that you send them back, as you know all my shows are archived, for the past three years on my website www.benderconsult.com and on VoiceAmerica.com. Because this show is so important it is my great honor to have an award winning, internationally known author, who by the way has been nominated eight times for the Pulitzer Prize and to me, a true civil rights leader, Mr. Edwin Black. He is an investigative author of 47 best-selling books that are available in 13 languages and in 40 countries. As I mentioned earlier, he has been nominated eight times for the Pulitzer Prize and he has dedicated his life to exposing hatred, genocide, and corporate misconduct. His book War Against the Weak really hits people with disabilities, all 54 billion of us right between the eyes. And I feel it helps to explain the attitudinal barriers we are facing today. Edwin, welcome to the show.

Read more ..


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