A Piece of the Action

How the Middle Class Joined the Money Class

About The Book

Winner of the Helen Bernstein Award for Excellence in Journalism
One of Business Week’s “Ten Best Business Books of the Year”

When it was published in 1994, A Piece of the Action was wildly acclaimed by Fortune, The Wall Street Journal, authors Michael Lewis and Brian Burroughs; it won the Helen Bernstein Prize and was a national bestseller. Joseph Nocera describes the historical process by which millions of middle class Americans went from being savers—people who kept their money in the bank, and spent it frugally—to being unrepentant borrowers and investors.

A Piece of the Action is an important piece of financial and social history, and with a new introduction, Nocera’s 2013 critique of the uses of the revolution is a powerful warning and admonition to understand what is at stake before we act, to look before we jump.

About The Author

Joe Nocera is an op-ed columnist for The New York Times. He was previously a business columnist for the Times and a staff writer for The New York Times Magazine. He spent ten years at Fortune, where he rose to editorial director, and has written for numerous publications, including GQ, Esquire, and Newsweek. He has won three Gerald Loeb awards and three John Hancock awards for excellence in business journalism. His most recent book is the New York Times bestseller All the Devils Are Here, which he coauthored with Bethany McClean. He lives in New York.

Product Details

  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster (January 15, 2013)
  • Length: 464 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781476734798

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Raves and Reviews

“One of America’s finest business writers has collided with one of America’s biggest untold stories, and the result is, predictably, a smash hit. Joseph Nocera explains why you have become the financially obsessed creature you are, and if you have a moment to spare from adding your credit card bills to your stock market losses, you should listen to him.”

– Michael Lewis, author of The Big Short

“Nocera is one of the most gifted observers of the business world today. It is no surprise that he has produced the definitive history of the post-World War II revolution in personal fincance and made it both vivid and comprehensive.”

– Bryan Burrough, coauthor of Barbarians at the Gate

“Everyman as financier. That’s the engaging and under-reported story that Joe Nocera shares with us in A Piece of the Action. This is not financial history, not business history: It’s a timely and superbly researched history of a dominant facet of modern American culture—one that has changed how we act, what we worry about, and who we are.”

– Tom Peters, coauthor of In Search of Excellence

“There isn’t a reader who won’t find himself or herself in . . . Nocera’s fascinating [book].”

– The Wall Street Journal

“[A Piece of the Action] fills in what is literally thirty years of missing history to the story of postwar America.”

– Los Angeles Times Book Review

“A riveting saga of the rise and rise of America’s personal finance industry—and the ferocious innovators who built it.”

– Fortune

“A very fine specimen of journalism . . . Nocera does succeed in breathing life into inanimate things . . . clear, accessible and engaging.”

– The New Republic

“Lively portraits of the legends of these financial industries . . . well-researched, tightly written, and full of eyewitness accounts.”

– Chicago Tribune

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