Ah, Winter Break is almost upon us, which means that it is almost time to get to my pile of books.  I’m not sure what came over me, but I just went out and bought a whole bunch more that I can’t possibly get to.

Here’s the latest in the queue:

Roger E. Backhouse and Bradley W. Bateman Capitalist Revolutionary: John Maynard Keynes.  I picked this one up after reading this New York Times piece where the authors argue that contemporary economists are lacking in the “worldly philosophers” department (see also the previous post).

Douglas W. Allen The Institutional Revolution: Measurement and the Economic Emergence of the Modern World.  A perfect little something for the New Institutionalist that has everything. Allen is an expert on transaction cost economics, co-author of some great work on agriculture contracts, and one of the funnier economists you are likely to ever meet. I will bet dollars to donuts that the book contains at least one example that you’ll be dropping at your next mixer (From the publisher: “Allen provides readers with a fascinating explanation of the critical roles played by seemingly bizarre institutions, from dueling to the purchase of one’s rank in the British Army”).  It says available December 1, but I got my copy in the mail today.

Eugene Fitzgerald, Andreas Wankerl, and Carl Schramm. Inside Real Innovation: How the Right Approach Can Move Ideas from R&D to Market – And Get the Economy Moving.  Schramm is from Kauffman, one of our recent visitors to the innovation class touted this as a must read, and I hear rumors that this will rear its head in Econ 405 next term.  A convincing trifecta!

Michael Lewis Boomerang: Travels in the New Third World.  If you read this blog semi-regularly, you’ve probably seen something about Lewis’ new compilation of economic disaster tourism writing.  I was going to recommend this as an e-book, but it has an unusually awesome dust jacket. Great for the plane.

Gretchen Morgenson and Joshua Rosner Reckless Endangerment: How Outsized Ambition, Greed, and Corruption Led to Economic Armageddon.  This was on my wish list and I no longer remember who tipped me off to it.  Looks great, if a bit thick.

I have some course-related pieces that probably aren’t such fab holiday gift ideas, but I will get to them as I get to them.