- Hardcover: 672 pages
- Publisher: Belknap Press (November 6, 2012)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0674066472
- ISBN-13: 978-0674066472
- Product Dimensions: 6.7 x 1.5 x 9.4 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #746,549 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Wheel of Fortune: The Battle for Oil and Power in Russia Hardcover – November 6, 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
The book shows Gustafson's substantial knowledge of the petroleum industry as well Russia itself. His knowledge of the details is so amazing that it prompted me to mention the intelligence community link above. He has a number of anecdotes and personal observations to offer. His perspective is American, not Russian; but I think he did his best to be in the Russian shoes -- which is not easy (believe me, I lived in Russia for 30 years).
To me the book was a breath of fresh air because of its "realist" position. Many Anglo-American authors show Russia's "Petrocracy" as a threat to America's interests. Neoconservative think tanks and other organizations keep harping that Russia is sliding into "despotism" and continue blackening Russia's image by churning up a distorted coverage of critical events and policies. Soon after Khodorkovsky was arrested on charges of multiple fraud and tax evasion back in 2003, numerous publications and articles with titles such as "Russia on Trial" and "The Kremlin's Mafia" appeared to promote the image of Khodorkovsky as a courageous opposition leader acting to challenge "despotic" Kremlin.
I am skeptical about that image. So appears to be Mr.Read more ›
Many of the events Mr. Gustafson is talking about happened when I lived in Russia. However, just like a regular ordinary Russian I experienced these at a 5 foot view.. The book helps the reader rise high above and look at the situation at a 30 thousand foot view. It does so by drawing on relations between laws of economics, politics and culture. Despite providing a great 30 thousand foot view, the book contains plenty of detail and anecdotal information to give the reader a feel for what Russia and ordinary Russians went through in the last twenty years.
There is no Detroit without the Big 3. There is no New York without Wall Street.. What the book makes quite clear is that there is no Russia without oil. (Even more clear than I ever imagined.) Understanding the dynamics of the world oil markets and economic policies of the Soviet and then Russian Govt goes a long way towards explaining the path Russia has taken in the last quarter century and the challenges it is facing today.
Russian policy makers should heed to the advice and lessons presented in the book as they navigate the country through the transition embarked on almost 30 years ago.
Finally, I was quite impressed with some of the Russian sayings and proverbs the author quotes in the book. I did encounter several that I had not heard before, despite being a native Russian speaker.
A wonderful book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very thorough and detailed. Moslty about the oil industry and not as much focus on the gas industry. Each chapter can stand on its own as an independent long article. Read morePublished 15 months ago by E.K
The author is an expert in Russian O&G business and Russian economics in general. This makes his story sound comprehensive and professional. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Anton
Very good stuff, helped me to get undestood the actual situation in RussiaPublished 22 months ago by kabocza
Fascinating look at the Russian oil industry. Detailed, well written, well sourced.Published 23 months ago by Law student
Thane masterfully succeeded in uncovering the fundamental drivers of the Russian oil industry and its interdependency with the political complex through a comprehensive and... Read morePublished on March 22, 2014 by O&G executive
The main thesis of this book is that Russia will collapse again. Soon. Unless Russia drills offshore and in the Arctic with Western oil company help. Read morePublished on December 28, 2013 by Alice Friedemann
Yes, I know that Russia has a lot of oil and gas. But this book gives the details and the problems that the Russian energy industry faces. Read morePublished on December 15, 2013 by William A. Thayer
Lots of information and very valuable read for anyone interested in learning about the Russian oil industry. The only concern were that some chapters were a bit dry.Published on April 14, 2013 by John Brenon
The book shows great insights to the development of the oil and gas sector in Russia as well as it pronounced implication for the general development of RussiaPublished on March 22, 2013 by Jens Perregaard