Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Shipping Man (Robert Fairchild #1)” as Want to Read:
The Shipping Man (Robert Fairchild #1)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Shipping Man

(Robert Fairchild #1)

4.01  ·  Rating details ·  696 ratings  ·  41 reviews
When restless New York City hedge fund manager Robert Fairchild watches the Baltic Dry Cargo Index plunge 97%, registering an all-time high and a 25-year low within the span of just six months, he decides to buy a ship.

Immediately fantasizing about naming a vessel after his wife, carrying a string of worry beads and being able to introduce himself as a "shipowner" at his u
...more
Paperback, 310 pages
Published June 8th 2011 by Marine Money, Inc.
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Shipping Man, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Shipping Man

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.01  · 
Rating details
 ·  696 ratings  ·  41 reviews


More filters
 | 
Sort order
Start your review of The Shipping Man (Robert Fairchild #1)
Eric_W
Jul 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nautical-fiction
This book is probably only for die-hard nautical fans like myself who love Max Hardberger's books. You have to be really weird like me to enjoy the arcane twists and turns of the shipping industry. If you do, and you enjoy sardonic writing, you'll love this book.

Robert Fairchild is a New York hedge fund owner/manager who becomes intrigued by the possibility of making money in the shipping industry. He's a total neophyte, completely unaware of the hazards and complications of an industry ostensib
...more
Andrew Hecht
While I found this book entertaining and certainly educational in matters of international cargo shipping, I was constantly perplexed by the main character's ignorance and stupidity. For someone who was a hedge-fund manager, supposedly wise at least in the ways of the financial world, he came off as a completer idiot. He entered into complex multi-million maritime contracts without legal review or advice with people of dubious ethics and then is repeatedly blindsided by clauses in the contract w ...more
Patrick Neylan
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was ok
Recommended to Patrick by: Julie Lithgow
The great thing about being president of a maritime publishing company is that you can get your own book published without having to seduce a mainstream publisher. The down side is that no-one will tell you your book isn't very good. And the down side of being a freelance maritime publisher (like me) is that you'll probably never work for Marine Money if you give the president's book a bad review. Still, one has one's principles.

I was given this by the director of a major maritime institution w
...more
Travis Tucker
I give this book 1 star as an actual novel and 3 stars as an introduction to the shipping industry (a "shipping textbook" as others have said).

As far as a shipping introduction, I feel like the basics were covered well and it piqued my interest in doing some additional research on the subject.

As far as a novel, the character interactions are contrived, there are needless "name dropping" instances ("his Hermes tie", "the shrimp from Nobu", etc) and then some cringe-worthy dialog such as the follo
...more
Michael C.
Oct 21, 2016 rated it did not like it
This book insulted my intelligence. The main character (A supposed 'Harvard Man') Is a vapid, self-absorbed dunderhead. God what an idiot. Every female character is flat and exists for the benefit of another male character. The wife is a spineless pushover pleased with whatever idiot move the husband makes (there are plenty). The female investment banker exists to be a supposed 'Strong Independent Woman who don't need no man' but really exists to show how a woman who could never previously find ...more
Fred Forbes
Jul 13, 2014 rated it liked it
After reading in the Wall St. Journal that this book was ending up in the offices of many hedge managers, I decided to give it a try. Since I have been involved in finance and investments for 35 years I enjoyed this glimpse into the world of shipping, but my sense is that those who lack a background in finance may find it a bit of a slog. The writing is not particularly strong but the story moves along. As satire of the capital markets it can be a delight, if occasionally overwrought. Characters ...more
Petras
Jun 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A great introduction into the business of shipping from the finance guy's perspective. Although it is a novel, a lot of things surely ring true.
Alex Song
Jun 01, 2016 rated it liked it
Pretty fun read. But overall fairly poorly written and not realistic. Hedge fund managers are not that dumb...
Alfheidur
Oct 10, 2017 rated it liked it
For anyone in shipping finance, this would be a 4 star.
For everyone else, this is a 1 star.
Caroline
Sep 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is described as a "thriller," and I want to be clear that this is only accurate to the extent that you find high-yield bond offerings thrilling. At one point Somali pirates briefly enter the picture, but they are quickly dispatched with offscreen to make way for a plot thread about European regulators disputing the marking of some of a bank's underwater loans.

Overall I really enjoyed it; the writing was awful, but it was a totally fun way to learn about the economics of the shipping industr
...more
Rohan Pinto
Jan 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Brilliant story telling helping understand a lay person, inner working cogs of Shipping Industry. And simple heuristics to get you stared on how do you approach cyclical industries.

#Fav quote of the book
“Money is a commodity just like the ships and the cargo. Even the people who say they are broke have money available for a good deal. Money hides when there is danger, but pops out whenever there is value.”
Ted Alling
May 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
If you have any interest in how International shipping works this book is a 10. You can tell McCleerey does some very big business deals. The way, he explains the buying and selling methods is incredible. Fun book
Michael Wald
Jun 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Good introduction to the shipping industry.

Is it fiction? Yes. Is it a romanticized version of reality? Yes. But the author included enough factual information to make the novel both a good read and a teaching tool to introduce the shipping industry to novices like me.
Nevena Krasteva
Jul 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A truly exciting and adventures book! Keeps you involved in the attractive and romantic world of international shipping industry, giving you a nice introductory view of the dry bulk shipping market and the financial part of the shipping business. I didn’t want it to finish!
Massis
Mar 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
Very good and interesting story. I loved reading it very fast-paced.
Kelsey
May 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Not the best written book—character development is a bit cheap—but does the job of giving a 101 on the tanker industry and peripherally of shipping and oil and gas trade.
Pratik Barasia
Jun 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A fun way to understand the shipping industry
Tracy B
Mar 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent

If you enjoy finance and investing you will enjoy this book. Its very funny and tongue in cheek, you may even recognise the characters. Recommended
Simon Ward
Feb 12, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, shipping


A lot of people in my industry have been talking about this book and in fact a friend/client gave me the book as a gift. As the blurb says it is part primer, part thriller on the financial aspects of the shipping industry. It is amusing enough for insiders, especially trying to figure out who the characters are based on. But unfortunately in this case the sum of the two parts is not greater than the whole.

I am sure that a lot of the problems would be solved by a decent proof reader let alone a
...more
Alexis Grove
Oct 16, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you like stories about investing, this book will tickle you. The protagonist of this (apparently) true story is a US hedge fund manager who, essentially on a whim, decides to invest a large part of his fund into a cargo ship, sight unseen. (the fact that he was drunk at the time and there was a beautiful woman egging him on seem to be the major drivers of this momentous investment decision.)

His interactions with various shadowy Greek and Norwegian shipping magnates lead him on a crazy yo-yo
...more
Jonathan Le
May 01, 2016 rated it liked it
I am in the business and know some of the "real" people this is based on. It's ok but makes Wall Street investment fund manager look way too intelligent and the Greek "broker" is too stereotypical. In a nutshell I enjoyed reading it if nothing else to have a good laugh at my industry. Which we do not do enough of. I have recommended this book to those on the market but would say it is a little tough to follow if you do not have a basic understanding of of the shipping markets and the challenges ...more
Tirath
Sep 23, 2014 rated it it was amazing
One of the finest books I have read in a long time.
Brilliant for investors and students of human psychology :)

The book takes us through the world of the shipping industry and the roles that many of its participants play.
But I found it to be a very deep and meaningfully written book.
About why people get interested in the exotic and the rising stock markets and ponzi schemes
How stupid or poor fund managers can be, and how desperate the real rich people tend to be
Reminds me of why only the boring p
...more
Aaron VanAlstine
Jul 20, 2012 rated it it was ok
The Shipping Man purports to be a financial thriller but is it really an exposition of the shipping industry. It’s also one of the most poorly written books I have ever read. Every character seems to be a petulant, sniveling retard or a two-dimensional cutout. The dialog is horrible; adverbs are in almost every line in the entire book (“I like your butt,” he said cheekily.) I don’t know how this was published without seeing an editor.

I’ll give it two stars since the industry information was pret
...more
Judy
Oct 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I bought this book for my husband last Christmas based on a review. I ended up reading it myself and found it a very good read, and discovered that lots of people believe the older, experienced shipping man closely resembles a real-life, larger-than-life shipping man.

For most people, the younger shipping man's course of action - leaving the hedge fund he ran and gambling everything to become a shipping man - is a fantasy - but a delicious fantasy!

I also enjoyed the background details, some of
...more
Collin
May 11, 2012 rated it it was ok
This was required reading for my vessel chartering class and while the story kept the material and information flowing, the main character was portrayed as quite clueless. This was undoubtedly done to inform both him and the reader of the various aspects of the industry but while reading, it is noticeable and deteriorates from the story in my opinion. Recommended if you are interested in a short novel that flirts with the basics of the shipping industry.
Roger Weston
Jan 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
The Shipping Man is a good read. It starts off with a classic character, Robert Fairchild. He purchases an old bulk carrier and gets himself into trouble, and I kept turning the pages to see how he'd get of it. I found myself immersed in his fascinating world. The book is a treasure chest of insight into ship financing and high-stakes wheeling and dealing.
Rex
Mar 31, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction, maritime
The Shipping Man seems to be more of a novelized primer into the shipping industry and in that respect it gets the job done (this coming from someone in the industry). If you want a quick and simple introduction to the shipping industry, read this book over a weekend. If you are looking for a deep and intriguing story you wont find it in The Shipping Man.
Jeyaraj
Jun 26, 2014 rated it it was ok
Lot of nautical and hedge fund terms are used without any explanation. The unfamiliarity of either nautical or finance terms are rightly shown by the stupid question by a hedge fund guy about Worldscale.
Robert makes lot of stupid and emotional decisions in becoming a ship owner.
Difficult book to read without knowing various nautical / finance terms.
Rahul Deodhar
May 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Characters are stretched - Robert is portrayed as too dumb, shipping men are made out to be too alpha-male-ish but overall fine read. Some gems of advice, one liners etc. Interesting read all in all..
Jamsheed Gandhi
Aug 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"There will always be many good reasons not to do things in life, but the people who achieve the great things are the ones who believe in themselves and find reasons to do things even when sometimes they do things that are not so smart." Coco to Robert from The Shipping Man by Matthew McCleery.
« previous 1 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
Fabulous fantasy 1 2 Sep 27, 2012 08:54AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • Free Capital: How 12 private investors made millions in the stock market
  • The King of Oil: The Secret Lives of Marc Rich
  • The Art of Execution: How the world's best investors get it wrong and still make millions
  • The Outsiders: Eight Unconventional CEOs and Their Radically Rational Blueprint for Success
  • 100 Baggers: Stocks That Return 100-To-1 and How to Find Them
  • Quality Investing: Owning the Best Companies for the Long Term
  • The Great Mental Models: General Thinking Concepts
  • Ninety Percent of Everything: Inside Shipping, the Invisible Industry That Puts Clothes on Your Back, Gas in Your Car, and Food on Your Plate
  • The Prize: The Epic Quest for Oil, Money, and Power
  • Dauntless (The Lost Fleet, #1)
  • Alchemy: The Surprising Power of Ideas That Don't Make Sense
  • House Reckoning (Joe DeMarco, #9)
  • House Odds (Joe DeMarco, #8)
  • House Revenge (Joe DeMarco, #11)
  • House Rivals (Joe DeMarco, #10)
  • House Arrest (Joe DeMarco #13)
  • The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life
  • Soldiers' Pay
See similar books…

Other books in the series

Robert Fairchild (2 books)
  • Viking Raid (Robert Fairchild #2)

News & Interviews

Dystopias, alien invasions, regenerated dinosaurs, space operas, multiverses, and more, the realm of science fiction takes readers out of this ...
286 likes · 265 comments
“success in life was basically random; it was a function only of being out in the world with a willingness to try new things.” 0 likes
“Money” 0 likes
More quotes…