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Reviews for A Fighting Chance

by Elizabeth Warren

Library Journal
(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

In the world of ordinary citizens vs. big banks, U.S. senator Warren (Massachusetts; coauthor, The Two-Income Trap) sees the match as the battle between David and Goliath. She warns readers that often the story doesn't have a happy ending and that sometimes it ends with David getting the slingshot shoved down his throat--sideways. The senator believes that people should understand that the consumer financial market favors big banks because regulatory and legislative bodies are targeted by well-financed lobbying groups paid for and directed by those financial giants. She relates her experiences during the 20-plus years she served on several congressionally appointed commissions and oversight boards related to consumer bankruptcy and TARP (Troubled Asset Relief Program) and as a special advisor advocating for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Warren shows how the system gave banks the edge over the middle-class borrower, and she explains how she worked tirelessly in all of her congressional-advisor roles to give middle-class families a fighting chance against the power of the finance industry. VERDICT Lay readers and business students who need to understand how banking and lending regulation and legislation are enacted will appreciate the personal stories Warren uses to demonstrate the problems borrowers encounter, the solutions she worked for, and the disappointments she met along the way.-Jill Ortner, SUNY Buffalo Libs. (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Book list
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.

*Starred Review* Warren gained national notoriety during her tenure on the commission to study the financial crisis, leading to creation of the consumer finance agency she headed briefly. In this engaging memoir, she recalls her journey from a childhood of struggle in Oklahoma City to success in academia and politics and laments the lack of chances for others to work hard and achieve their own versions of success. Warren recalls an early marriage, struggling to raise young children as she moved from a career as a teacher to law school to teaching law. She was so agitated by the unfairness of bankruptcy law that she wrote books about it and used her professorship at Harvard as a platform, eventually launching herself into a career in Washington. Armed with stories and statistics about how bankruptcy and predatory banking practices affected middle-class families, Warren lobbied hard for change. She offers a behind-the-scenes look at the political deal-making and head-butting machinations in efforts to restore the nation's financial system after the mortgage debacle. Warren recalls negotiations with political figures from Senator Ted Kennedy to President Obama as well as her hard-fought campaign to unseat Scott Brown as U.S. senator from Massachusetts. This is a passionate memoir of one woman's personal story and the larger story of corruption in financial circles and the need for reform that balances the interests of the American middle class against those of the corporate sector. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: The senior senator from Massachusetts and former Harvard law professor here gives the backstory on her fight for the middle class in a memoir that is sure to attract interest beyond the book-review section.--Bush, Vanessa Copyright 2014 Booklist