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on May 12, 2012
This is a wonderful and humorous introduction to macroeconomics! I bought while waiting for a train in Frankfurt at the bookstore in that station (no idea, why they thought it a good idea to put copies of that book next to the cash register --- but that's how I found it!), read it in full riding a train to Berlin (rather than some other things I was really supposed to read) and chuckled all the way! It contains a surprising amount of valuable information, it is a surprisingly complete and balanced introduction, it is fun to read and excellent value for the price. I love the little cartoons when they describe tongue-in-cheek, how many fundamental ideas in macroeconomics received a Nobel prize (or perhaps led to frustration of the Nobel committee eventually). Fact #3 on p. 98, that "technological progress and trade are essentially indistinguishable" is perhaps a bit odd, but overall, this is well written and a terrific read. This should be required reading in schools, for journalists and politicians, and it is an excellent quick-guide intro for anyone embarking on learning all the details in earnest. I recommend it highly. I liked it so much, I bought an extra copy from Amazon as a present. Harald Uhlig, Dept. of Econ., Univ. of Chicago.
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on March 3, 2012
I used the concepts in this book to teach my class about GDP instead of having the students read Krugman's 30 pages in their text. Students retained more information when using cartoons. Of course, this book isn't a substitute for Mr. Krugman's book, but for those wishing to instantly learn about major macro topics, this book is excellent.
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on March 30, 2013
A former Columbia University professor in computer science, I feel a kindred spirit with Professor Yoram (whom I did meet once at a comedy club several years ago), since I love bending over backwards to make technical concepts fun, humorous, and entertaining (e.g., I used to sing educational songs to my college and graduate students during lectures). Yoram and Grady have succeeded in making the college-level concepts of economics clear, revealing, interesting, and completely effortless to take in by way of the entertaining mode of this work. When you sugarcoat the pill in this way, the reader gets that knowledge "Matrixed" into their head and then you realize the experts were right: there was nothing bitter about this pill in the first place! Despite my technical background, I'd never actually taken an economics course. I chose their two cartoon books on economics to do so (their third is forthcoming as I write this) and very much feel like I filled in the blank spots of my background one this topic area. If you enjoy learning and want to enjoy it even more, ahem: no-brainer!

Eric Siegel, Ph.D.
Founder, Predictive Analytics World
Author, Predictive Analytics: The Power to Predict Who Will Click, Buy, Lie, or Die
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on September 16, 2012
I'm a professional economist and was looking for a book to introduce the field to my homeschooled children, ages 10 and 12. I discovered the cartoon guides after being disappointed with economics books explicitly targeting middle school. These books are wonderful. They find just the right level of detail to convey the most important concepts of economics without being misleadingly simple or tediously complex. My kids frequently laughed out loud while I read this book to them. I seldom needed to stop to explain concepts as they were clearly described in the text. Months after reading, my kids were able to apply the concepts to real life examples. The books were perfect for my needs - I couldn't ask for more.
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on April 9, 2012
How much do you really understand about how our economy works?

Yeah, me neither.

Following up their first volume, which naturally focused on microecomics, Grady Klein and Yoram Bauman ("the world's first and only stand-up economist") now have released The Cartoon Introduction to Economics, Vol. Two: Macroeconomics. This is where things get decidedly more complicated.

Luckily, Bauman and Klein have a great sense of humor. Even better, they have a firm grasp on what it all means, and they make it simple enough to pass on to laymen. This is also when we get into tricky territory, like trade between countries and the morally troubling debates over what to do about workers' rights when rich countries trade with poor ones. Naturally, everything is complicated here. Nothing is a straight, black-and-white, good-or-bad answer.

Klein and Bauman are to be commended for making a richly understandable book that provides all the information of a textbook without getting too dry (also, despite the title of the book, it never gets too cartoony, either, striking a difficult to achieve balance between being informative and being funny).

The humor does wear thin in spots, but that's hardly a criticism. It's a relief to see a book explain what we need to know about macroeconomics in such a lucid way.

Reviewed by John Hogan
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on March 8, 2013
After reading the Microeconomics version of this product, I was really looking forward to seeing how the authors would handle macro. Not so well, as it turns out. One of the great parts about the Microeconomics book was that it began with the principles of the subject and worked its way up to more complicated topics. Unfortunately, this book glosses over nearly all foundations and jumps right into unemployment as the first main subject with no regard to how the macroeconomy "works". The one highlight of this book are the sections on international trade, which are really quite good.

Also, it seems like much more of the humor in this version was directed toward the educated reader and not so much on the student as in the Microeconomics edition.

If you're looking for a fun way to learn economics, go get the Microeconomics book. If you're looking to learn macro, look elsewhere.
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on April 2, 2014
Be sure to start with Volume One ( The problem with the material is in its density. While I thought that I could read ten pages at a time without coming up for a breather, retention and understanding requires reading a couple (that means "two") pages at a time, pausing, thinking, writing notes, looking a few things up, considering the implications, then proceeding to the next.) A good read for anyone who wants to understand why the economy affects a person, the individual.
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on September 5, 2015
These are cartoons?? Not funny, not entertaining, and certainly not educational. I teach AP Macro and AP Micro and intended to use selected cartoons to reinforce some of the harder lessons. Couldn't use a single one.
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on August 23, 2013
Macroeconomics was invented as a way to conceal the workings of Keynesian interventions in the economy. This book does a great job of revealing some of the intricacies and double-speak of macroeconomists. Great for students to use when venturing into the black lagoon. It, along with Vol 1: Microeconomics, are essential tools for students trying to "figure it out;" and instructors who still are working at it. Well-done, and good reading.
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on August 9, 2015
Don't buy the Kindle Version. It's a Ripoff! Unlike most books you can ONLY view the book Horizontally. It you try to view the book vertically, it still displays TWO PAGES at a time. The font of the pages is small and UNLIKE OTHER COMICS, it DOES NOT DISPLAY the IMAGES so you can read one panel at a time. You have PRINT that is TOO SMALL TO READ and YOU CAN"T ADJUST IT. Total waste of money! I previewed the book on a PC but bought the book on a Kindle Fire HD. Why does Amazon sell products for their kindles that don't work on their kindles?
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