News & Opinion

The Man Who Knew Wins the 2016 FT Business Book Award

November 23, 2016


Sebastian Mallaby's biography of Alan Greenspan is a master of the form, and is well-deserving of the award.

It was announced last night that Sebastian Mallaby's biography of Alan Greenspan, The Man Who Knew, has won the Financial Times and McKinsey Business Book of the Year. The Financial Times' Andrew Hill (who himself released a hell of a book) this year, tells us that:


It is the first biography to win the prize, although Mr Greenspan’s autobiography, The Age of Turbulence, was shortlisted in 2007, the year before the financial crisis raised serious questions about the central banker’s legacy.


The Man Who Knew is an impressive work of scholarship,” Lionel Barber, editor of the FT and chair of the book award judges, said. “It’s a masterpiece of political economy and, above all, it’s a great and enjoyable read.”


Mr Mallaby’s 800-page book was published in October by Bloomsbury and Penguin Press, and was hailed as “exceptional” in an FT review. It came up against strong competition from five other shortlisted books tackling the world’s critical economic and management challenges—from the US productivity gap to persistent gender imbalances.


Another of the judges praised the winning book for its “meticulous depth, which reveals all of [Mr Greenspan’s] human qualities and professional contradictions in a lucid way”.


The book is on our awards longlist, as well, a finalist in the Biography & Narrative category. I reviewed the books personally for our Editor's Choice series when it was released last month. As a biography, I think it's a master of the form, and is well-deserving of the FT Award.  Congratulations to Mr. Mallaby.

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