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Customer Review

13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars From Monkey Prostitution to Raising a Terrorist, 20 Oct. 2009
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This review is from: Superfreakonomics: Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance (Hardcover)
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I found this book interesting, frustrating, fascinating and infuriating (mostly at the same time). The duo that brought us Freakonomics with answers to why drug dealers live with their mothers and how the name that your parents gave you can determine which job you end up getting have now brought us Superfreakonomics.

To rogue economists or mad scientists this books meanderings may be make perfect sense, but to the likes of me I had a job trying to fathom how we got from one subject to another and then back to the original one at times. It almost seemed like a couple of kids that get so excited about their school project that they just want to tell you everything all about it all at once. That said, some of the themes and questions posed I found fascinating:

Why should suicide bombers buy life insurance?
Why is May the worst month for a baby in Uganda and Michigan, USA to be born?
How did 9/11 start the trickle down effect of the credit crunch?
Why could eating kangaroo meat help save the planet?
Why did 38 people watch Kitty Genovese be murdered and say nothing?

When I read Freakonomics a few years ago I gave it 2 stars. It attempted to tell us that teachers cheat, estate agents lie and black kids are usually given different names to white kids. You don't say! After having read this second offering I have decided to accept it for what it is - fun and light entertainment. Some of the findings are really fascinating and some are pretty banal and even confusing (the global warming section had my eyes glazing over).

However, to end on a positive note, the epilogue was genius! If you have ever wondered if monkey prostitution exists, wonder no more.....
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