Secrets of success and failure
Steve Case, Jerry Levine, Ted Turner: Meet the moguls of America Online and Time Warner. Actually, they were the titans of AOL Time Warner, before the merger meltdown forced them all to resign. The big egos of these larger-than-life characters make the story behind the $112 billion merger of the media behemoths better than fiction. And Washington Post reporter Alec Klein turns the heady days, shady deals and power plays into a page-turner that reads like a novel. Following AOL from its rocky start to the Internet explosion, Stealing Time recounts the "deal of the century" that held the promise of extraordinary synergies between the online giant and the media powerhouse. Alas, the honeymoon was short-lived. Klein's thorough investigation details the CEOs' mad scramble to hide poor financial performance and save face on Wall Street. But the blame game and sinking stock price took their toll, as investors lost millions and the deal-makers found themselves out of jobs. How did things go wrong so fast? Maybe it was the clash of cultures or the impact of a down economy. Whatever the answer, the battle for power, control and, most importantly, pride makes for fascinating reading.