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Bombardiers Paperback – December 30, 2003
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
Po Bronson's novel about bond traders is a candid look into the "greasemen" of the financial system. It tells the story of a dysfunctional SF bond trading office. The office is a corporate meatgrinder churning out profits, making those crazy or tough enough to handle the stress rich, and crushing the rest. In the pressure cooker of the bond market, "when the going gets weird, the weird turn pro". If you're not a pro, you're fired. One day, a new salesman Eggs Igino fresh out of grad school arrives. He's like Jesus, and he changes everything.
This book was so good, I read it in two days. At one point I had to put it down because I was laughing so hard tears were running down my cheeks. Bronson's prose is this weird melange of Joseph Heller and Hunter S. Thompson (in his early years). It's the ridiculous, mixed with base human emotions, and salted with the bizarre.
While hilarious, Bronson's plot is a bit weak. He appears to be an author who derives more from the setting then the story. I had trouble sorting out the main character's (Igino) motives. Or maybe the main character was Sid Geeder? I couldn't be sure. In addition, his two female character's (Lisa Lisa and Sue Marino) were interchangeable.
"Bombardiers" is a good read. It's got information, sex, absurdity, and cruel humor administered at an amphetamine charged pace. You won't put it down.
The sales managers are ogres, the bond salesmen themselves tortured heroes, or bastards, or idiots, or sometimes a combination of 2 or 3 of those, with some telepathic or clairvoyant skills thrown in if it will make things move along quicker. Revenge is sweet, and consumed often, served hot or cold. Stress nearly kills several characters, and ruins the life of many more. Relationships are as short and destructive as possible. But it's "cartoon violence" and the whole way the jokes keep coming thick and fast, and you're laughing so much that people are starting to ask what the hell you're reading!
It's a wild ride, and hard to get off once you're on board. Read it!
Yes, it's funny, it's biting, it has that "Catch 22" thing going on...but it's also *very* educational. Bronson really understands markets and does a great job here getting their complexities down on paper in an engaging, even riveting, way - even when it involves something as trivial as the office breakfast.
Very humorous and very highly recommended.
Bronsonsuccesfully takes the most absurd elements of high finance and weaves it into a cautionary tale of the price the new information economy extracts from its front-line foot soldiers. Sid's sales pitch of the Lincoln Convertible Bonds to a hapless fund manager alone is worth the price of the book -- where he browbeats and ridicules a timid portfolio manager into taking a $5 million position in a bond designed to finance the hostile takeover of a small ... country. Blisteringly hilarious, and darkly cynical it's the sort of work that good satirists should aspire to.
Outrageous and fun for thosein the industry ... and a fair warning for ambitious college students wanting a shot at the glory in the capital of capitalism of investment banking.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Energetic, inventive, frenetic, "well written" as they say, and -- as others have commented -- a re-do of Catch 22 recital for the financial markets salespeople world. Read morePublished on October 21, 2013 by Alan Venable
I thought it was awkwardly written, I could not get through it and I usually love books about finance.
I found no suspense or intrigue
Laughed loads reading this. One of my all time favourites and have returned to it many times. Funniest and most accurate picture of life on a trading floor I've come across!Published on December 16, 2011 by Jeff T.
I've read both Joseph Heller's Catch-22 and this novel, obviously a nod to the cynical classic. While others may take offense at such obvious imitation, I believe Bronson has... Read morePublished on February 1, 2011 by !
Po Bronson's book is a clever satirization of life on a bond sales desk. Having been on a trading floor, I found that the antics and brutally competitive environment depicted by... Read morePublished on November 19, 2007 by A. K. Giri
There is no better book that shares the hypocrasies and truisms investment banking than Bronson's book. Read morePublished on June 28, 2004
Sid Geeder is a "bombardier", an investment banker who spends every waking moment working for the Atlantic Pacific Corporation. Read morePublished on March 6, 2004 by Lacey Savage
This is the Catch 22 of the stock market set, sort of, in which the "Third Law of Information Economics" has a good solid ring to it, over sands of shifting substance. Read morePublished on October 29, 2003 by Lynn Harnett