Mike Bloomberg: Money, Power, Politics by Joyce Purnick
This is the biography of financial genius and ubermayor Michael Bloomberg, written by an award-winning veteran New York journalist, published at the time of the controversial mayoral election, in which Bloomberg is running for a third term. Bloomberg's story would be riveting had it stopped in 2001. By then he had made a fortune as a general partner at Saloman Brothers before being fired in 1981 with a $10 million payoff, with which he founded what became Bloomberg LLC. His first client for providing financial information via bespoke terminals was Merrill Lynch. By 2008, Bloomberg was one of the 10 richest Americans, and Bloomberg LLC the pre-eminent provider of financial information in the country. He is a very significant philanthropist, among others to his alma mater John Hopkins University. In 2001, Bloomberg ran for mayor of New York, abandoning his lifelong membership in the Democratic Party for a Republican slot, where he was endorsed by Rudy Giuliani. He took on the responsibility for rebuilding the confidence of the city, still badly shaken after 9/11 which preceded his election by barely seven weeks. At the end of two terms he was one of the most popular mayors in the city's history. He could have gone out at the top setting an unenviably high standard for his successor. But in another huge gamble Bloomberg decided that he could only be succeeded by himself, even if he had to rewrite electoral law to do so. He had bet his legacy for the privilege of supervising the city during the most severe financial crisis since the great depression of the 1930s. It was an epic twist in an already dramatic career, proving if nothing else that Bloomberg was never going to go quietly. He has not authorized this book, but he has allowed close family, friends and business intimates to be interviewed on the record by Purnick, and he has given her hours of his own time as well. It all makes for an unequaled biography of a man full of contradictions, an inveterate risk taker, a restless seeker of problems to solve, a friend to Arnold Schwarzenegger and John McCain, the Kennedys and the Clintons. He is a great American enigma, gloriously unraveled in this biography of one of the great men of our era.