By Vera Wilson
It’s summertime, and your stack of beach reads includes the latest John Grisham novel, that biography you’ve been meaning to get to, a just-released spy thriller, and a humorous book with a little romance sprinkled in. But before you pack, consider taking along a personal finance book.
Contrary to popular belief, personal finance books are usually easy reads that don’t require textbook-like concentration. Granted, they’re not page-turners, which can be a good thing when your son’s begging you to build a sandcastle or it’s time to reapply sunscreen. Many finance books are chocked full of personal stories and anecdotes that can be amusing as well as informative. You’ll cry as you journey with the author through his bankruptcy and laugh out loud when he buys his first yacht!
Now that I’ve convinced you, here’s what should be on your reading list:
- The Total Money Makeover: A Proven Plan for Financial Fitness (Thomas Nelson Inc., 2009) by Dave Ramsey. In the financial literary world, this book has stood the test of time, benefitting finance rookies and veterans alike.
- How to Stop Living Paycheck to Paycheck (CreateSpace, 2016) by Avery Breyer. Did you have to put your beach vacation on your credit card? If so, this book’s for you.
- The Mindset: My Journey from Janitor to Silicon Valley Millionaire in Five Years (Asa Bowers, 2019) by Ace Bowers. Remember the Will Smith movie The Pursuit of Happyness? This memoir is similarly inspiring. Who doesn’t love a rags-to-riches story?
- The Infographic Guide to Personal Finance: A Visual Reference for Everything You Need to Know (Adams Media, 2017) by Michele Cagan and Elisabeth Lariviere. What’s more laidback than a picture book? If you’re easily distracted by seagulls swooping overhead or beach volleyball, this book is a good choice.
- The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy (Longstreet Press, 1996) by Thomas J. Stanley and William D. Danko. Inherited wealth is nice, as is inventing the latest must-have tech gadget, but this book highlights the habits of everyday people who accumulated lots of wealth through habits that you can master as well.
- How to Make Your Money Last: The Indispensable Retirement Guide (Simon & Schuster, 2016) by Jane Bryant Quinn. If hanging out on the beach has you wishing it could be permanent, this book by a veteran finance writer shares uncomplicated advice on preparing for and managing your money during retirement.