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Busted
Cover of Busted
Busted
Life Inside the Great Mortgage Meltdown
Borrow Borrow

Veteran New York Times economics reporter Edmund L. Andrews was intimately aware of the dangers posed by easy mortgages from fast-buck lenders. But, eager to buy a home and start a new life, he gave in to temptation and began a surreal adventure into the mortgage mayhem that nearly wrecked our economy.

Busted weaves together the author's own ride to the edge of bankruptcy with the tragicomic stories of his lenders, the Wall Street pros behind them, and the policymakers in Washington who were oblivious until it was too late. The story takes Andrews to the offices of Alan Greenspan, the mansions of subprime-mortgage millionaires in southern California, a despondent deal makers' convention in Las Vegas, and Wall Street. Rich with on-the-ground reporting, Busted is a darkly humorous exploration of the cynicism and self-destructive judgment that led to America's biggest economic calamity in generations.

Veteran New York Times economics reporter Edmund L. Andrews was intimately aware of the dangers posed by easy mortgages from fast-buck lenders. But, eager to buy a home and start a new life, he gave in to temptation and began a surreal adventure into the mortgage mayhem that nearly wrecked our economy.

Busted weaves together the author's own ride to the edge of bankruptcy with the tragicomic stories of his lenders, the Wall Street pros behind them, and the policymakers in Washington who were oblivious until it was too late. The story takes Andrews to the offices of Alan Greenspan, the mansions of subprime-mortgage millionaires in southern California, a despondent deal makers' convention in Las Vegas, and Wall Street. Rich with on-the-ground reporting, Busted is a darkly humorous exploration of the cynicism and self-destructive judgment that led to America's biggest economic calamity in generations.

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  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from April 27, 2009
    “As I write in February 2009, I am four months past due on my mortgage and bracing for foreclosure proceedings to begin.” Thus begins this cautionary and critical examination of the housing crisis, a story that turned personal when New York Times
    economics reporter Andrews got caught up in the housing bubble after falling in love with a woman and a house. Bringing in $120,000 a year in salary—most of which went to child support and alimony to his ex-wife, Andrews says he was able to get a “don't ask, don't tell” mortgage with the assumption that his new wife, Patty, would be able to get a job to keep them afloat, an expectation that didn't work out as planned. Because of his economics journalism background, Andrews says he “should have avoided the mortgage catastrophe,” and he castigates himself as well as fellow borrowers, the financial industry that took advantage of them and a government that didn't put the brakes on the crisis that many economists warned about but that Alan Greenspan, the Bush administration and others ignored. This deeply personal exposé is timely and sobering in its candor.

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    Tantor Media
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