Wednesday, August 24, 2011
The Economics of Ego Surplus: A Novel of Economic Terrorism by Paul McDonnold
Part action novel, part literary novel, part guidebook to economics, The Economics of Ego Surplus is the story of college instructor Kyle Linwood. Anticipating a relaxing summer with his girlfriend and his PhD dissertation, he gets recruited by the FBI to help with an obscure case of terrorist internet "chatter," which explodes into a shocking, mysterious assault on U.S. financial markets. As the economy melts down and a nation panics, Kyle follows a trail of clues from Dallas to New York City to Dubai, United Arab Emirates. In his quest to discover the truth, he will be forced to confront the assumptions underlying his education as well as his life. But will it be enough to save America from the most brilliant terrorist plot ever conceived?
A mix of political intrigue, detective story and economic lesson, this book is eclectic, to say the least. It is an intriguing read that bends genres and rules.
The writing style is clear, which in a novel that deals with a lot of ideas about economics, is a good thing, otherwise we’d be lost after a few pages. It was fascinating to learn about the different theories about the way our world’s economy works, and although some of the explanations deviate from the storyline, they are never dull, and they enhance the plot rather than hurt it. There is an interesting balance between the seriousness of the worldwide economic crisis in the story and the main character’s fresh voice. When it could have easily been all doom and gloom, the author manages to keep things relatively light.
The one thing that I had a bit of an issue with was the book’s length. I feel like it could have done a bit better by being longer, taking more time to explain certain things more thoroughly. It sometimes feels a bit rushed, leaving the reader trying to catch up. This should not deter anyone from reading it, though, since the plot still holds itself together.
This is a book for everyone with an interest in world economy and for all the mystery or thriller lovers out there.