Tuesday, February 26, 2008

What I'm Reading

I just finished a book that, despite some cosmetic issues, is a good resource for any economics or personal finance teacher to have on the shelf. And for those of you teaching a course on the global economy or current events, you might want to use it as an optional or auxiliary text. The book, Globalization, is by Don Boudreaux, Chairman of the Economics Department at George Mason University. If you read the Cafe Hayek blog, you're already familiar with his writing style; and if you follow the "Letters to the Editor" section of any of a number of major newspapers, you're familiar with his name.

Boudreaux does a very good job of taking what is a highly emotional subject for many, and dissecting it in a very entertaining and informative manner. The fact that the book is only eight chapters and 162 pages long (including glossary and index), and you have a simple, enjoyable book on a topic of high current interest.

My only complaints with the book have to do with the editing. In chapter two, there are a couple of bubble charts that could have been better rendered in color (if the idea was to be able to differentiate regions or countries), or had some other ways of providing detail. The charts should have provided "information at a glance." But in my case, they were of little help. And two figures in Chapter 7 appear to have the titles reversed. It was easy enough to figure out which needed to be which, but this should have been caught before going to press.

Nevertheless those errors do not detract from the overall value of the book. I would hope you would consider checking it out of a library at the very least, or buying it for your own use. I don't think you'll regret it.

I look forward to your comments about the book.

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