3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
This is the lengthy tale of the first career of Jordan Belfort, creator of one of the most successful penny share boiler rooms and an inveterate consumer of pharmaceuticals. He recounts his excessive spending, copulation and drug-consumption and the impact on himself and his family of this (and his illegal share dealing) ranging through divorce, jail and a lot of hospital time (Belfort has the constitution of Rasputin). It may sound like a mixture of Fear and Loathing and Liars Poker but the author is stuck between being maudlin, half-proud and half-shocked by what he did. In this he is probably correct but it makes him no less tedious.
37 of 44 people found the following review helpful
on 5 February 2014
I saw the film without having read the book. It was a fairly good film - typically Scorsese with the music selection and the cinematography although I thought it was a little too long. Di Caprio was very good, as were the supporting actors, many of whom I hadn't really seen before.
I instantly bought the Kindle of the edition and ploughed straight through it. To cut to the chase, it is the autobiography of a guy who makes his millions through a stock broking / investment banking set-up which was immoral at best and downright illegal at worst. I was hoping that it would be a rags-to-riches and back to rags sort of book and fill-in some of the blanks that you expect from a film. It was however somewhat missing - you get the drug abuse, parties, debauched behaviour by his peers and employees and the illegal trading, but you don't get the story of how it all happened - in fact it gavies less of a picture than the film, usually it is the other way around.
Many of the anecdotes from the film are included in the book but they tend to become a little tiring repeated time and time again. When he describes his Rolex or cars, parties, houses, conquests in the bedroom (or wherever it takes his fancy!) it is without any sort of irony or sense that it will wear thin to the reader. It doesn't feel that there is any remorse from the author for the lives that his company ruined by selling worthless stock, the pension funds that might have been hit etc.
I wouldn't suggest reading if easily offended due to the bad language it contains - it doesn't bother me but each to their own. Overall it was OK, perhaps as a tale of greed and debauchery it was interesting - not greatly written but if you enjoyed the film the chances are you might enjoy the book. I don't think passing a moral judgement of an individual is a valid category on which to judge a book - the 3 stars represent that is is an interesting read and I've not read any accounts of broker millionaires before, if I was to award a points based on the antagonist/protagonist Jordan Belfort it would be a 1 star!
25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on 16 March 2014
Saw the film first and thought it was really entertaining so thought I'd give the book a try.
What a mistake - it has to be the most repetitive, boring and appallingly written book I have ever read. Even though it's only around half the length of a lot of the books I read I found it really hard going, mainly due to how badly this book was written. He repeats himself many times, talking about the same old things - things which on many occasions are just not interesting; Really, I didn't care how much your silk sheets cost the first time you told me, and I care even less after you've then proceeded to tell me again another couple of times. This is something that he does frequently throughout the book, as well as refer to people he encounters with - mainly derogatory - nicknames for pretty much everyone he encounters, including his own wife (loamy loins, I ask you!)
After finally getting to the end I formed the conclusion that here we have a book written by a person who has absolutely no morals at all, totally no understanding or remorse for the lives he's destroyed through his pursuit of sex, drugs and money. This book is simply 500 pages of bragging about how much better he is than practically anybody else (heaven forbid you go to work and earn an honest living for a modest wage packet because in his eyes you'd be nothing but pond scum). He also seems to remember conversations and events in almost exquisite detail and considering most of his time was spent high as a kite I fail to see how that can be possible so I believe that a lot of what happened in this book is embellished to an extent - I am left wondering how much of it is actually true and how much is his own imagination.
It's nothing but self indulgent rubbish and I certainly won't be reading his second book and throwing more money at him. He truly is a despicable man. He looks down on everybody else when in reality it is he who is the lowest of the low.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on 10 February 2014
Not often you hear that the film is better than the book yet sadly that's true for this stinker!
Jordan Belfort seems to remember exactly how much he paid for everything he's ever bought, jewellery, cars, hookers, drugs, clothes, the lot. He also remembers the exact amount of pills (mainly Quaaludes) he consumed during each night out.
Absolutely full of himself. In my opinion he needs a swift kick in the tits!
28 of 38 people found the following review helpful
on 19 March 2008
The book tells the story of Jordon Belfont, the "Wolf of Wall Street", a guy who seems to have made insane amounts of money in not strictly legal ways, and then blew as much as he could on drugs, boats, drugs, planes, drugs, prostitutes and, well... more drugs!
And that's pretty much the book, a retelling of how he spent his money, and how the drugs made him feel, before the final crash.
The thing is it missed what I find the most interesting thing in these sorts of books or films, the climb before the fall.
The book starts off with the young Jordon at his first day at Wall Street, flat broke and in awe of all the big-shots and money around him. The chapter ends by Jordon describing how, if you had told him then, he wouldn't have believed that in a few years time he'd employ most of his seniors, and own the posh restaurant he was having lunch in.
Great set up for how he did it, but it never comes. The book jumps straight to him being incredibly successful, with a raging drug habit! It misses what could have been a really interesting ride.
The rest of the book is tales of his debauched lifestyle and eventual re-hab, interesting enough, but there's just too much of it. You do feel a bit bored come the end, which seems to be slightly rushed.
All in all it's an OK read, but could have been so much better. Worth a punt if you've got a long journey and enjoy reading about someone's debauched life.
It's apparently being made into a film, in which case I think it's going to need some padding.
on 9 September 2014
Gratuitous sex and bad language, but hey that's what you expect if you have hard of the film/book! A light read (i.e. no way intellectually taxing) but it does leave you wondering and then convinced that the "Financial World" stinks - and rips people off!
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 18 February 2014
Like all books, they are nothing like the films we see. It was easily readible and leaves you gawping at how not only Jordan Belfont but the majority of profesionnals perfomed their duties. If this was in any other industry then we would have been fired years ago. The book itself did not at all glorify what they were doing, merely explain that it was the norm. It was an open and honest account from someone who just lost themselves whilst at the same time take the mickey out of what he was doing. I recommend the book to all addicts as advice always best from those that have been through it. Funny, Heartful, Touching and Total Madness.
6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on 25 October 2013
A poor and often cliche' account of a life of excess. If you want to read a book about wall street in the 80s, read Liars Poker.
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 12 January 2014
The opening prologue showed a bit of promise but thereafter it went rapidly downhill. After 50 pages I began skim reading it such is the level of vacuous storytelling. Unlike other Wall St, memoirs, (Liars Poker, Remeniscences of a Stock Operator), this is just a boring ramble about how much stuff cost, how many drugs he could take and how many times he can say f@ck in one sentence. Don't buy it. It's total rubbish. Mine served as 5 minutes of extra fuel on my wood burner such was my level of utter boredom.
on 25 June 2015
Having lived the movie starring Leo DiCaprio I thought the book would be tame compared to the movie but I was wrong if any thing the film is tame compared to the 80s hedonism of jordan belfort and the Stratton oakmont crew