• The Bond King

  • How One Man Made a Market, Built an Empire, and Lost It All
  • By: Mary Childs
  • Narrated by: Mary Childs
  • Length: 11 hrs and 16 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (413 ratings)

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The Bond King  By  cover art

The Bond King

By: Mary Childs
Narrated by: Mary Childs
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Publisher's Summary

This program is read by the author.

From the host of NPR’s Planet Money, the deeply investigated story of how one visionary, ruthless investor changed American finance forever.

Before Bill Gross was known among investors as the Bond King, he was a gambler. In 1966, a fresh college grad, he went to Vegas armed with his net worth ($200) and a knack for counting cards. Ten thousand dollars and countless casino bans later, he was hooked, so he enrolled in business school.

The Bond King is the story of how that whiz kid made American finance his casino. Over the course of decades, Bill Gross turned the sleepy bond market into a destabilized game of high risk, high reward; founded Pimco, one of today’s most powerful, secretive, and cutthroat investment firms; helped to reshape our financial system in the aftermath of the Great Recession - to his own advantage; and gained legions of admirers, and enemies, along the way. Like every American antihero, his ambition would also be his undoing.

To understand the winners and losers of today’s money game, journalist Mary Childs argues, is to understand the bond market - and to understand the bond market is to understand the Bond King.  

A Macmillan Audio production from Flatiron Books

©2021 Mary Childs (P)2021 Macmillan Audio

What listeners say about The Bond King

Average Customer Ratings
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Professional reader needed

Well written and interesting story but I wish it had a professional reader instead of the author. Good professional readers are much better; much easier to understand and comfortable to listen to.

5 people found this helpful

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Being a good writer does not make you a good narrator

Mary Childs is a good writer and knows how to tell her story. But given that this is a big release from a major publishing house, why didn’t someone hire her a narrator? Probably because Mary Childs thought she was the best person to read her own book. WRONG.

I have listened to other authors reading their own books and have never been too bothered, and I’m generally not too fussy about narration.

However, 12 hours of Childs’ unfortunately shrill voice adding inflections to her own self perceived clever witticisms is grating and pretentious at the same time.

I’m soldiering through because I enjoy the subject and story but please, next time just hire a professional.

4 people found this helpful

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Good Book, Unflattering Portrait

The writing and narration are excellent. I recommend this book for those who are interested in Bill Gross, Mohamed El-Erian, and PIMCO.

The book likely provides a fair representation of Bill Gross, Mohamed El-Erian, and PIMCO. That said, I am sure that none of the subjects in the book appreciate the picture that was painted. I would like to remind readers/listeners that no one is who they appear to be in their worst moments. Life is complicated and people are multidimensional. Gross and El-Erian are flawed. So are the rest and best of us.

3 people found this helpful

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Fun look into the life of an investing icon.

So many times the story you thought you knew is so wrong. Great story would recommend the book.

2 people found this helpful

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Bravo!

Fantastic! Great story. Rich detail, humanistic, captivating, very well written. Entertaining, nerdy detail on esoteric subject, but approachable... can't wait for Mary Childs next book.

1 person found this helpful

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Good story for financial and personal interests

Great of the book. Good story. For people that are into markets and trading I imagine it’s a good story, but it’s also good for those who are not. It doesn’t dive too deeply into major trades but the explanation of tarp and gross’s influence on post Great Recession is detailed enough. We’ll done

1 person found this helpful

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Bill Gross and Pimco revealed

Great insight into the personalities that rode the bull market in bonds and created PIMCO. Mary Childs book is a must read for anyone interested in financial markets.

1 person found this helpful

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It’s boring

This book is very boring and does not share much productive information. Not happy with this

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Wahlberg’s Italian Job cannot touch this riveting tail…

Mary Child’s masterpiece should be a movie. It’s that entertaining.

The parts that were most captivating were her descriptions of the Bond King’s biggest heists.

Other reviewers almost influenced me against purchasing this work. Please be careful following those reviewers. Try to pick up on their sexist descriptions of her narration.

Her voice is not shrill. It’s just that some boys don’t like the shaft that she’s pushing. Perhaps it was intended for them too. I don’t see it that way.

Her lens is colorful and it’s focused on painting a world that’s abusive. Some folks don’t like that perspective but there’s no need to disparage this story of bank robbery (and comeuppance) because it hurts your masculinity. Just lube up.

I don’t want to spoil the story so I’ll stop with this caveat: If you don’t read this work and fundamentally grasp the lessons, you do yourself a huge disservice.

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Enjoyable and Illuminating

This was great journalism and really enjoyed the characters, the evolution and rise and fall of Bill Gross, and the lessons in leadership.