Tuesday, May 17, 2022

Confessions of a Wall Street Insider

Michael Kimmelman was charged with insider trading as part of the US government's investigation into Raj Rajaratnam. But the evidence against him was much flimsier than that against the other guys who were charged. Kimmelman claims to be innocent, wrongly included as a conspirator because he misjudged his business partners. In Confessions of a Wall Street Insider, he tells his story.

Wednesday, May 4, 2022

A Rising Man

A Rising Man is the second novel by Abir Mukherjee that I've read, and I did so because the first one was so good. This one didn't disappoint either, with a fantastic story set in 1919 in India during the British Raj.

Tuesday, April 26, 2022

The Hydrogen Revolution

As countries progress towards getting a smaller percentage of their energy from fossil fuels, hydrogen fuel is one of the least discussed alternatives. But Marco Alvera believes it may make up 25% of our energy uses by 2050, as he discusses in his very recent book, The Hydrogen Revolution.

Thursday, April 21, 2022

Deadly Cross

I've heard of most of the highest paid authors, like J.K. Rowling, Stephen King and John Grisham. But perhaps the highest paid author of the last decade is someone I hadn't heard of until a couple of weeks ago: James Patterson. So I decided to give one of his popular novels, Deadly Cross, a read, and it did not disappoint.

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

The Guns of August

The lead-up to World War I was intense. Had the assassination of an archduke never occurred at that particular moment, I now still believe the same war would have broken out anyway. It was inevitable because of how the European powers, particularly Germany, were posturing. The Guns of August is a terrific book on this topic.

Friday, April 8, 2022

Karsan Value Funds: 2022 Q1 Results

Karsan Value Funds (KVF) is a value-oriented fund, as described here. Due to securities regulations, the fund is not open to the public at this time. Should that change in the future, there will be an announcement on this site.

Thursday, April 7, 2022

A (Very) Short History of Life on Earth

From the beginning of our universe to our eventual extinction, A Very Short History of Life on Earth gives an excellent summary of how we got here and where we'll possibly go. It's a terrific refresher on the history of the universe and life on earth.

Friday, April 1, 2022

Becoming Trader Joe

The founder of Trader Joe's has written a book about how he built his company. Becoming Trader Joe was fantastic, and I say this as someone who is ambivalent about the brand, having never stepped in any of their stores.

Tuesday, March 29, 2022

The Little Prince

I don't write a lot of negative book reviews on this site. That's not because I don't come across terrible books, but because I usually put such books down before finishing them, so any reviews would be based on incomplete information. But that's not the case here, as The Little Prince was short enough that I was able to power through it even though it was really bad.

Tuesday, March 22, 2022

A Natural History of the Future

Predictions about the future are doomed to be wrong, and yet there are general concepts that we can learn about our past and present that can help us prepare for that uncertain future. Rob Dunn's A Natural History of the Future is a fantastic exploration of some basic tenets of ecology and evolution that can help guide our species to a more prosperous destiny.

Monday, March 14, 2022

Mr. Putin

What is Putin's end goal? Everyone seems to know what it is, but the problem is that they are saying different things. Is he trying to build an empire? Trying to re-create the Soviet Union? Simply protecting Russia from NATO? To help me make up my own mind, I just read Fiona Hill's Mr Putin.

Monday, March 7, 2022

Dame Mas GASSolina

Shares of GASS are down 80% from their 2014 highs, and thus trade at an 83% discount to the latest book value. Read more...

Wednesday, March 2, 2022

The War Widow

At the end of World War II, the men who survived combat returned home to find that their jobs had been taken by women. As a result, there was a lot of pressure on women to relinquish their positions so that the men could have them back.

At the same time, while the war was now over, many of the particularly depraved Nazis who had inflicted especially egregious tortures on their victims had escaped and were hiding around the world.

It's with this backdrop that Tara Moss' historical fiction novel The War Widow takes place.

Wednesday, February 23, 2022

A Necessary Evil

India in the 1920s would have been a tumultuous place. Local kings ruled over swaths of oppressed peasants, and in turn those kings were controlled by the British. It's against this backdrop that Abir Mukherjee's novel A Necessary Evil takes place.

Wednesday, February 9, 2022

To Live

To Live was an interesting historical fiction novel that takes place before, during and after the Cultural Revolution in China. The book was once banned in China, where it is now widely read.

Wednesday, January 19, 2022

Midlife Dawn

Midlife Dawn is the first in a series of popular books that takes place in a world where a few people are blessed/cursed with magical powers.

Friday, January 7, 2022

Karsan Value Funds: 2021 Q4 Results

Karsan Value Funds (KVF) is a value-oriented fund, as described here. Due to securities regulations, the fund is not open to the public at this time. Should that change in the future, there will be an announcement on this site.