• Michael Rosen
    • Investment Insights are written by Angeles' CIO Michael Rosen

      Michael has more than 30 years experience as an institutional portfolio manager, investment strategist, trader and academic.

    BEACH READING

    Published: 05-08-2024

    I’m happy to go to the beach year-round, but it’s now really becoming beach weather, so I have five new book suggestions for your next trip to the beach.

    Nonfiction

    The Blue Machine, Helen Czerski
    We give little thought to the physics of the ocean, but they are complex and vital to our existence. This book goes into the science of how the ocean works, how temperature, salinity, density and topography all affect the weather, climate and the broader ecosystem. Czerski is a bubble physicist and oceanographer, and her science is detailed yet accessible. This is a fascinating tour of the oceans with an appreciation of just how important it all is to our survival.

    Eighteen Days in October, Uri Kaufman
    A well-researched, fast-paced account of the 1973 Yom Kippur War that reveals many insights. The intelligence failure at the start of the war has obvious parallel with the Gaza war fifty years later. We see that decisions are made with incomplete and contradictory information, how personal political rivalries can affect those decisions, how minutes so often matter in turning the tide of war. The reputations of IDF Chief of Staff David Elazar and Prime Minister Golda Meir were unjustly tarnished, and the recklessness of Ariel Sharon won the war that most Israelis believe they lost. A timely history.

    Fiction

    Witness, Jamel Brinkley
    Ten short stories, all set in the Bronx and Brooklyn, with various characters, all struggling with their daily lives. Each story and person is carefully drawn with tight prose. We become witnesses to their lives, their grief, their hopes. Brinkley penetrates their outer selves to allow us to see what is inside their characters, and does so with grace and perception.

    The Extinction of Irena Rey, Jennifer Croft
    A famous Polish novelist has called her eight translators together to begin work translating a new novel. As they have before, they would all work together on the translation in her house so that the novel could be released in multiple languages simultaneously. The author, Irena Rey, distributes the new novel to them, but then she disappears, and the translators are not sure what to do: wait for her? Look for her? Translate without her? They do all of the above, and more. As we learn about their past lives and secrets, the mystery of Irena Rey’s disappearance unveils itself. Jennifer Croft is, in real life, the translator of Olga Tokarczuk, the Polish Nobel Laureate, so she knows something about translating and translators, but demonstrates her unique gifts as a writer of beautiful prose and a compelling story.

    Künstlers in Paradise,  Cathleen Schine
    The Künstlers escape Vienna on literally the last boat out of Europe in 1939 and travel to Los Angeles, where they are part of the large, German-speaking émigré community of artists and writers that fled the Nazis. Mamie, a 12-year-old girl, adapts quickly to California, but most of the story takes place eighty years later when her peripatetic grandson, Julian, visits her from New York, just before the pandemic shuts everything down.  Mamie regales him with stories of her youth, the famous people she knew, the sheer joy of being in a fairy-tale land as her old world disintegrated. The storytelling is mesmerizing, and has the effect of opening Julian’s heart. He is still directionless, but through Mamie, he has gained a maturity and perspective he never had. He learns from Mamie to leave the past behind and make the most of the present, and not to worry about the future at all. A beautiful, funny and deeply touching novel.

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