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The Frackers: The Outrageous Inside Story of the New Billionaire Wildcatters Hardcover – November 5, 2013

4.5 out of 5 stars 446 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Fans of the lively, character-driven nonfiction of writers like Kurt Eichenwald and Ben Mezrich should welcome this book with open arms. It’s a potentially dry story: a bunch of guys try to make a lot of money by hammering subterranean rock formations (shale, mostly) with liquid, breaking them up, allowing the trapped-in natural gas to come to the surface. This is hydraulic fracturing, otherwise known as fracking, and, in Zuckerman’s hands, the topic generates a surprisingly entertaining story about Big Men with Big Ideas, the highly competitive (and, in some cases, increasingly desperate) search for a new and potentially highly profitable source of energy. Zuckerman also explores the often passionate and outspoken opposition to the drilling procedure (for some, fracking doesn’t just sound like a dirty word; it is one), although he doesn’t come down on one side or the other. He shows us the beneficial side of fracking and the potentially environmentally disastrous side, and lets us find our own ground to stand on. A lively, exciting, and definitely thought-provoking book. --David Pitt

Review

Praise for The Frackers

"Zuckerman’s fast-paced, densely interesting The Frackers is the first book to tell the stories of the obstinate, ravenous, methodical, sometimes rascally oil executives of the recent boom. By focusing on people instead of trends, it gets to the heart of why the United States is once again the largest supplier of oil and gas in the world."
—The New Republic
 
The Frackers, [Zuckerman’s] second book, is told with care and precision and a deep understanding of finance and corporate politics as well as oil and geology.”
— Bryan Burrough, The New York Times

 
“Fans of the lively, character-driven nonfiction of writers like Kurt Eichenwald and Ben Mezrich should welcome this book with open arms . . . A lively, exciting, and definitely thought-provoking book”
Booklist

“A fascinating study of American entrepreneurial culture and the modern robber barons who succeeded in creating an energy revolution.”
Kirkus

“Lovers of business and capitalism will appreciate The Frackers, … Zuckerman has done valuable and timely reporting on the men and independent companies that created the shale boom.”
Associated Press
 
“Colorful …compelling account [of]  a revolution driven by stubborn entrepreneurs.”
Reuters
 
“An interesting and first-rate narrative… a dramatic tale… The book may be the definitive story of the innovative men behind the most significant energy discovery of our time.”
Akron Beacon Journal

"Insightful...At times suspenseful...on-target in telling the tale of a group of wildcatters who risked almost everything and helped launch the United States on the path to energy independence."
Natural Gas Intelligence

“Too little attention has been paid to one of America's biggest economic and scientific revolution of recent decades: the tapping of abundant oil and natural gas reserves within our own borders using a technique called fracking. Wall Street Journal reporter Zuckerman…sets out to change that with his unique talent of translating complex aspects of finances and geology into prose that reads like a blockbuster thriller.”
 —Publishers Weekly (starred)
 
“Zuckerman details [the frackers’s] epic adventure with skill that makes it required reading for anyone looking to understand fundamental forces at work in our world today.”
 —Forbes “Best Books of 2013”

"A dynamic narrative... introduces us to the major players behind a boom."
San Antonio Express-News

“Greg Zuckerman tells the remarkable story of the larger than life entrepreneurs and deal makers behind this energy-industrial revolution. A great read, whether you are pro-fracking or against it.”
Matthew Bishop, US Business Editor at The Economist
 
“If you are looking for the present-day take on a romantic rag-to-riches drama reminiscent of the Gilded Age, engaging tales of brave entrepreneurs whose desire to get really wealthy helped them persevere and prosper come boom or bust, look no further than The Frackers."
Pittsburgh Post Gazette

“Gregory Zuckerman tells the story of the shale revolution well. He has an eye for detail and a flair for narrative that makes it highly readable... This is a story of innovation as perspiration… It is a reminder that innovation is neither easy nor cheap nor inevitable”
The Times (UK)
 
"Greg Zuckerman's The Frackers will long be considered 'The Bible' on fracking and the history of drilling in the US and the wildcatting billionaires who were the main players. This incredibly thorough book explains, thrills, and has us on the edge of our seats all the way towards US energy independence." 
James Altucher, best-selling author, entrepreneur and blogger


Praise for The Greatest Trade Ever

“ Simply terrific. Easily the best of the post-crash financial books.”
—Malcolm Gladwell

“ Mr. Zuckerman is a first-rate reporter who is also able to explain the complexities of real estate finance in layman’s terms. At times, The Greatest Trade Ever reads like a thriller.”
—The New York Times

“ He’s written the definitive account of a strange and wonderful subplot of the financial crisis.”
—Michael Lewis

“ Possibly the greatest book to come out of the financial crisis of 2007–08, and it’s certainly up there in the top 3.”
—Bnet.com
 


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446 customer ratings
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Top international reviews

Mandrake
3.0 out of 5 stars Concentrates on the human interest and neglects the technical details. It is 150 pages too long.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 7, 2016
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bob
5.0 out of 5 stars a short history of refracturing and horizontal drilling in USA
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on March 8, 2019
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JD
4.0 out of 5 stars Good narrative of shale revolution US
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 31, 2018
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Feyi Fawehinmi
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb read
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 22, 2016
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Brian Bell
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 18, 2018
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Imo Baba
4.0 out of 5 stars Deserves its title!!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on July 19, 2017
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 9, 2018
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M Mansour
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent book
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 11, 2014
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Neumann
2.0 out of 5 stars É dinheiro e não fraturamento
Reviewed in Brazil on May 16, 2018
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N
5.0 out of 5 stars Nice read!
Reviewed in India on January 17, 2019
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Gord Addison
5.0 out of 5 stars Solid history of one of the most important energy stories of our time.
Reviewed in Canada on December 4, 2017
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Chris Raper
4.0 out of 5 stars Visionaries that just won't quit
Reviewed in Canada on March 9, 2014
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Stuart Mark Austin
5.0 out of 5 stars Compulsive Reading
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on December 10, 2013
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Alex
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellente histoire de la fracturation hydraulique aux Etats Unis
Reviewed in France on January 31, 2016
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Zee
4.0 out of 5 stars Evolution of fracking
Reviewed in India on July 1, 2017
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