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Have You Ever Tried to Sell a Diamond?: And other Investigations of the Diamond Trade (Short-form Book) Paperback – December 4, 2013
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Top Customer Reviews
Your friendly third or fourth-generation hometown family jeweler (or the faceless chain store at the mall) is just as much a part of this lucrative game as De Beers. Sapphires, emeralds and other "precious" and "rare" shiny things happily ride those diamond coattails and are no more rare or precious. The smiling, well-dressed lady or gentleman helping you with your purchase in that elegantly appointed showroom likely knows that and is likely doing quite well, thank you. Hey, everybody's gotta make a living and the marketing had fooled me completely, just like it had my dad, until I tried to sell that diamond. And I used to think that cars depreciated rapidly!
This is a worthwhile read to find out where it all started, but it's not really a story of just the past, or just diamonds, or just De Beers. Next time you're at the mall, glance over at the folks shopping the jewelry store. This is still a profitable industry and there's nothing wrong with that. Uninformed consumers - like my dad and countless others - are going to pay too much. In this day and age, that's the fault of the uninformed consumer.
To me it is a story about how we can be made to believe something not because the belief has a basis in fact but because the belief would benefit someone (in this case, the De Beers company). Now the belief in diamonds as a great investment seems to be coming to an end, as the last chapter in the book describes. I can't think of another book that so clearly shows how and how much our beliefs can be controlled.
As another reviewer pointed out, it's badly edited, with sections duplicated, sentences breaking off and resuming a couple of paragraphs later and the like.
Still - it's an interesting look at an interesting subject, and a cautionary tale - don't invest in diamonds. Buy them if you want because they're sparkly and pretty and your significant other will love you for it, but the idea you'll make a killing on them as an investment is a fool's hope.
In terms of editing, however, this book is terrible. It is merely a collage of chapters which have already been published elsewhere. Not even an attempt at linking them together with bridge passages or placing them into a coherent whole has been made. It leaves the nasty taste in your mouth that this was simply a book copied-and-pasted together from existing texts to make an extra buck. And the copy-and-pasting was poorly done indeed: There are numerous typos, and occasionally even entire paragraphs are duplicated word-by-word because the person doing the copy-and-paste didn't bother to clean up afterwards. This book would sorely have needed an editor doing at least a basic quality check. This diminishes the impression so much that I can't think of giving more than three stars, even though the content covered is, in fact, intriguing.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
An extremely, and at times overwhelmingly, in depth look at the diamond trade - its history and structure, marketing practices, and its role in international politics. Read morePublished 14 days ago by Darcy Shepard
This is not worth $7. After an hour of reading I am 35% through and the author is still writing about diamond mines in 1978 Africa.Published 22 months ago by Joshua W. Fenton
I purchased the book based on Epstein's reputation and previous works. The book is a very engrossing read about how the diamond was formed and how they manipulate and control the... Read morePublished 23 months ago by HeavyG
The Kindle edition is a terrible mish-mash. Paragraphs begin or end in mid-sentence, then 3 pages later you find the missing part. Lots of typos/grammatical errors too. Read morePublished on January 25, 2014 by kard
Chopped and sections that repeat throughout. Dozens of spots where the sentence just stops without concluding. Save your money. Horrible.Published on January 21, 2014 by HS
Why is it that a non rare gem stone has become in the USA the symbol of engagement and not necessarily elsewhere; viz, the stone in the ring given by Prince Charles to Kate... Read morePublished on September 12, 2013 by Morris L. Greb