Coronavirus Updates

The Chicago Booth Book Club co-chairs share their favorites from 2021.

Extreme Economies by Richard Davies
This was a Financial Times Best Economics Book of 2019. Richard Davies travels to and examines nine different economies operating on the margin (displaced societies, disaster zones, etc.) and draws insights into their survival, failures, and our future. It's a very accessible book that sheds light on the human side of the markets.

The Ungrateful Refugee by Dina Nayeri
Nayeri's book grapples with the experiences of asylum seekers and refugees. She explains the extreme hardships a refugee faces to be accepted into a western country. In light of the Afghanistan refugees coming to the US this year, this is an important book to read and to understand how hard the immigration process really is.

Migrations by Charlotte Mcconaghy
This is a thought-provoking book that imagines a future where birds have ceased to exist save for the last few Arctic terns. Our protagonist (Franny) is determined to follow the migratory journey of the last three Arctic terns on their final migrations. There are no fish in the sea and hence no boats or fishing vessels. They have been banned by the governments of the world to conserve what little sea life is left. The book gave me a lot to think about and mull over—I enjoyed the preciseness of the words and the giant feelings they invoked.

The Key Man: The True Story of How the Global Elite Was Duped by a Capitalist Fairy Tale by Simon Clark
This is a compelling book about Abraaj, a private equity firm. Spoiler alert-—it no longer exists. The firm misused the funds under allocation and continued to dupe its investors. The Key Man (Arif Naqvi) shone bright for 16 years, touting the good his fund would do in the emerging markets by investing in environmental, social, and governance offerings, while generating outsize returns for his investors. For the longest time, investors have shied away from investing in emerging markets because of issues related to volatility. Naqvi claimed he could do better. Well he didn't. This makes for a very interesting read on the private equity industry overall.

Mythos: The Greek Myths Retold by Stephen Fry

Heroes: Mortals and Monsters, Quests and Adventures by Stephen Fry

As the title suggests, Mythos is a condensed and entertaining retelling of the Greek Myths about Gods; Heroes is written the same way, but focuses on stories about mortals. Both are great when you need an escape from school or work.

The Intelligent Investor by Benjamin Graham
No statement is more true and better applicable to Wall Street than the famous warning of Santyana: "Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it." In this book, Benjamin Graham, father of value investing and the famous teacher of Warren Buffett, teaches us how to be an intelligent investor that 1) minimizes odds of losses, 2) maximizes the chances of achieving sustainable gains, and 3) controls self-defeating behavior that keep most investors from reaching their full potential. It is a must-read for all value investors!

The Future is Faster than You Think by Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler
According to The Law of Accelerating Returns by Ray Kurzweil, we are going to experience 20,000 years of technological change over the next 100 years. First the book explored ten technologies currently on exponential growth curves, examining where they are today and where they are going.  Then, the book dived into nine industries and discussed how converging technologies are reshaping our world - from future of education and entertainment to the transformation of healthcare and business.  Lastly, the book expanded its view from the decade ahead to the full century, focusing on five great migrations, economic relocations, climate-change upheavals, virtual worlds explorations, outerspace colonization, and hive-mind collaborations. I just cannot wait to welcome the exciting future! Do you? 

Happy Reading!