Some Quick Updates on ECONNED

Dear patient readers,

The book is out, and initial reactions are very positive (via e-mail, Amazon reviews, as well as in comments), although word is getting out more slowly than I would like. The publisher is going with the traditional media model of not having PR and reviews prior to the book release. And a lot of their assumptions are based on traditional media. For instance, they refused to send books to bloggers prior to mid last week. Their assumption seemed to be that bloggers are like book reviewers, they might read the first and last chapter and then offer a review. But my impression is most if not all bloggers read a book in full before opining, since they (unlike print reviewers) are at risk of being jumped on in comments or on other blogs if they get something wrong by having skipped over part of a book. So the blog comments in particular are coming out more slowly than I would like.

I am getting radio and TV starting this Friday; am also trying to get an update from my publisher where they have not had success so I can start seeing who might put in a helpful word to move things along.

I am behind the eight ball, and will have a site up soon that will provide info on reviews and events and also provide a template for sending out signed book plates (Barry Ritholtz did this for his book, some readers seem to like this idea).

My agent is prodding my publisher re getting a bookstore event in NYC (they are not used to authors who have an established base; they seem to think only Sarah Palin and Thomas Friedman have readers who want to have their books signed by the author in person). Will let you know when that happens. I may have a trip to DC, and if so, will see what we can arrange there.

Reviews thus far:

This Week’s Hot Reads Daily Beast

Toxic Finance James Kwak

Guest Post: How Unenlightened Self Interest Undermined Democracy and Corrupted Capitalism Jesse

And if you like the book, please say a few nice words at Amazon! Thanks!

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  1. b


    Received the book in the mail yesterday from Amazon. I’m about to crack it open shortly. I would be interested in a signed copy sometime down the line. Good luck with the PR efforts.

  2. fiscalliberal

    I will be ordering your book this morning. It would be nice if we could see your interviews referenced in your new site or this blog. I do not watch the tabloid ideology stuff available on the likes of CNBC and often miss interviews on Bloomberg.

    Another point, I often send short notes to my senators and congressperson which illustrate a lot of your logic. It does not take long to generate these notes and those folks need to know there are people out there capable of understanding the hypocracy going on in government. My theory is that they should never be able to think that there are not rational people out there watching.

  3. yoganmahew

    In the post, according to Amazon. Be interesting to see if it is coming from the US or if they have it stocked in their European warehouse too.

  4. craazyman

    I hope to be able to buy the book today at Barnes & Noble on East 86th street. Last Sunday they said it would be on the shelves there by March 3. Good luck with it!

  5. jane hay

    Am ordering the book off my wishlist today. I would LOVE to have a signed copy, but my chances of going to New York anytime in the next millennium are very small. Your blog is my go-to every day. Thanks for all you do.

  6. chuck roast

    Book politics and prose on Connecticut Ave. in DC. One of the great indy bookstores in America. Even better than Elliot Bay and powell’s.

    Hope to see you there.

  7. Subprime Lawyer

    Hi Yves,

    I can put this post on my facebook page. Nevertheless, if you created a facebook page for the book (I do not think this exists) myself and others could become a fan of ECONNED. Once I become a fan my network would see my endorsement of the book. This site has been really informative and I would love to lend any support I can.

  8. Talton Embry

    I received it yesterday. I am excited to that that I will be spending the weekend with you.

  9. Ina Pickle

    Go on The Daily Show! Tons of exposure, and the book appears to be geared directly to their more in-depth treatment rather than the norm of “OH, we’re out of time.”

    Haven’t managed to read it yet – planning to go to an actual brick and mortar and purchase an actual tree carcass. What can I say — I’m old fashioned.

    Congrats again, Yves. I realize what a huge task this was, and I am sure it will be a success.

  10. BuzzP

    Went to McNally-Jackson in SoHo earlier in week – not on shelves, so ordered – will be picking-up today and nudging them to stock for the hordes of loyal fans to follow

    1. Yves Smith Post author


      I am sorry for the delay but Palgrave needs to get the cooperation of a local bookstore for this to work, and I have not heard back. My understanding is that you can’t get local bookstores to cooperate until the book is out.

  11. Gerald Muller

    I live in Luxembourg, a small country but not ignorant on finances. I ordered your book 3 months ago on Amazon and they say I should only get it by April 15 or so.
    Scandalous that they are not able to ship at the same time as the US. After all, we are all concerned.

    1. Yves Smith Post author


      I know, this is frustrating. The international release is not until April 16, I cannot fathom the reasoning.

      You could order it from the US website, but the shipping charges would be very steep.

      1. Gerald Muller

        Thank you so much! Cherry on the cake, delivery is free worldwide!!!
        Just ordered it. Will see how long it takes to get here.

  12. Rickster

    Barry Ritholz talked up your book as one the two he is dying to read. The other is Markopoulus’s book on Madoff and the SEC.

  13. Ceci

    Well, I said I’d wait until the kindle price went down. But I just couldn’t. I don’t have much disposable income, so it was probably a silly thing to do. Nevertheless, being a fan of your blog, I caved in and got it well ahead of when I “should have”. I bought it during my break here at work and it’s all loaded up on my kindle ready for me to read this evening.

    I hope you enjoy strong sales and good reviews.

  14. WKJ

    I got my copy yesterday (in N VA) from my Amazon pre-order. The book is superb. I have read it quickly once and will be taking it for a re-read on a flight to HNL.

    I especially liked Appendix II, but would have preferred to see more detail on the motivations of the Dealer. For example, how much profit would Dealer have booked on the deal? Also, was Dealer just outsmarted by Hedgie or was Dealer’s participation in the transaction where it had to retain the credit and documentary risk under the CDS protection it bought from Monoline an example of actual or wilful blindness illustrating the IBG/YBG principle?

    Also, in note 7 on page 354, should the word “bought” be “sold”?

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      You are a quick study!

      Re Dealer, remember the transactions are done on a desk that gets rewarded for putting deals together. CDOs get 1-1.5% underwriting fees, which is rich for debt deals. Plus the CDO machine is a necessary part of the RMBS operation, if you don’t make your own CDOs, you needed to find a place to get rid of the undesired parts of an RMBS deal, which was the BBB tranche, and sometimes the A and AA tranches (depending on market conditions).

      So Dealer thinks this is a decent business.

      The real question is why Dealer retains the AAA tranche (along with the monoline guarantee). You see from the discussion of the negative basis trade that the traders book MORE in profits from retaining and insuring the deal than from eventually selling the CDO to an end buyer and writing its own CDS (back to back with the monoline CDS, and taking some extra margin too….)

      “Bought” is correct. CDS transferred into CDO, hence “bought”. These are synthetic assets of the CDO.

  15. Jim in MN

    Got two copies in Minneapolis and B & N last week, much to my surprise. The information counter lady knew they had it when I tried to preorder it and knew right where to take me.

    I am finding the first couple of chapters get right to the heart of it, an interesting level of complexity somewhere between lay people and technical. I am very very glad to find familiar Yves Smith rhetoric like “looting” and “corruption” still there, just backed up by book-chapter-heavy documentation. As someone who has dealt with the influence of economic theories on policy many times, I am delighted and plan to essentially force certain folks in DC to read this and let me know what they think.

    One thing that might surprise you a little is the degree to which the limitations of neoclassical economics are in fact quite well understood in policy wonkdom. The brutal force of the ‘consensus’ model in financial and trade policy just hammers out dissent, while in slightly further out reaches of policy (energy, health care) a lot of it is honored in the breach as they say–people often analyse policy with one eye on the ‘hard’ economics while freely abandoning big chunks of the framework. The problem is, what they replace it with is essentially arbitrary, sheer guesswork, wishful thinking or self-serving circular logic (reverse engineering the answer).

    Just a couple of observations. Strike while the iron is hot and push this book to critical mass!

  16. Rosalva Thillet

    would it be possible to translate your website into spanish because i have difficulties of speaking to english, and as there are not many pictures on your website i would like to read more of what you are writting.

  17. Pam Filipek

    I came across your website while searching on MSN and have now added you to my rss reader. I Just though i should say “maintain the nice work” and give best wishes on a job well done and nice recommendation also!

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