Another Author of the Month at MyShelf.Com
Author of the Month
Eric Schlosser[June 2003]
Chosen by Jeff Shelby, author of Dead Week
I have not entered into a fast food restaurant in eleven months and I owe it all to Eric Schlosser.
Schlosser is the author of the best-selling Fast Food Nation, an inside look at the fast food industry and how its far-reaching tentacles have tightened themselves around different facets of American culture. I picked up the book shortly before heading out on vacation and finished it by the end of the first night of our trip. Since then, not only have I avoided every McDonald’s, Wendy’s and Burger King in my path, I’ve tried to share the book with every person I know.
It’s a testament to Schlosser’s writing and investigating skills that a non-fiction book that basically turns a rock solid part of the American economy on its ear has been so popular. Schlosser, a correspondent for The Atlantic Monthly, has garnered accolades from just about every major literary review source and has been applauded for his efforts to expose an industry that has operated unchallenged for the better part of the last fifty years.
In a time when the integrity of investigative reporters is under heavy fire (thank you, Jayson Blair and Stephen Glass), Schlosser’s book is chock full of documentation and facts that dazzle and frighten. Maybe that’s what makes the book so impressive. Or maybe it’s the fact that the book is Schlosser’s first.
second book, Reefer Madness, just hit shelves and promises
to deliver the same impact that Fast Food Nation does.
Reviewed by Jeff Shelby, MyShelf.Com
Eric Schlosser returns to the subject of the American economy with his second book, a look at three black markets that comprise at least 10% of the country’s economy. Migrant workers, marijuana and pornography serve as the backdrops for Schlosser’s exploration of how such a large part of the American economy operates underground and yet remains consistently profitable.
Much of Schlosser’s focus is on how these three areas are perceived and punished. Clearly, he is making an argument that the punishments for operating in these three markets are too severe, but it’s not just his opinion. The facts support his points. Like Fast Food Nation, this book is fleshed out by the people that Schlosser encounters while doing his research. When a man is sentenced to life in prison for his part in the sale of marijuana, Schlosser makes it easy for the reader to question the American legal system and who is really in the right when it comes to the vast economic landscape of our constantly changing economy.
While each subject could’ve been covered in more depth, Schlosser has given us plenty to think about in this book. As the country’s economy continues to falter from the terrorist attacks of nearly two years ago, Schlosser provides us with a fascinating look at a part of the economy that remains strong despite all logic. He has once again written a book that should be considered required reading in all social studies classes across the country and has readers already looking forward to his next effort.
Read Eric Schlosser’s
articles at www.theatlantic.com
2003's Honorary List