Reading Fanatic ReviewsInvesting & Finance
Investing for Your Financial Future by Edgar Plain
Investing for Your Financial Independence Made Easy*
Too Short to Be of Much Use
I have read a variety of books about investing and personal financial management. While the author proclaims in the book description that this book is intentionally short and not meant to be a heavy technical manual, I found it to be too brief to be of much value. If you look at the table of contents, many topics appear as though they will be addressed. They are, but so briefly that there isn’t much benefit to it. I find myself wondering if the author’s knowledge and the book topic would have been better served by splitting up the information into a series of books so that he could keep the book lengths short but go into some of these ideas in more depth. I don’t honestly feel like I can recommend this book.
Stock Market Investing for Beginners by Darcy Malone
Stock Market Investing for Beginners*
Too Many Issues with Book
This book has some good basic information about the stock market, but at times is so awkwardly worded that it is difficult to figure out precisely what the author is intending. I find myself wondering if the author is a non-native English speaker and doesn’t quite understand the turns of phrase that are common in idiomatic English. Even some simple phrases weren’t used correctly, like “breaking even”; “getting even” was used instead; the two actually have quite different meanings! Some simple words appear to be misused as well, and some words are missing. The book doesn’t seem to be properly copyedited either.
I think the book does have some information that would be helpful to a beginner in stock market investing, more so than this same author did in his book on Forex investing. But again, like that book, there is certainly not enough information in this book for a beginner to be able to start trading successfully or confidently. The subtitle is definitely misleading here; you will not be able to “generate money today.” Because of the issues with language and this deficiency, I would recommend finding another more comprehensive book about how to invest in the stock market safely and effectively.
Forex Trading for Beginners by Darcy Malone
Forex Trading for Beginners*
General Information Good But Not Actionable
I have read a couple of books on different types of trading and one specifically on Forex trading. Compared to other types of investing, Forex trading seems particularly fraught with peril, including the high risk of losing a fair amount of money in a short time. As such, I believe it takes true knowledge and skill to work the market to your advantage. This book to me seems to be more about educating about what Forex trading is, including are the terms and concepts you need to understand. But it falls short on actually giving you actionable steps if you want to dip your toe into this volatile market, despite what the subtitle says. The background information isn’t bad, with its definition of what the market is, trading pairs, terms like pips, margins, and spreads; the types of risk involved; different ways of trading; choosing a broker; and analysis and automation tools—among other topics. But you certainly won’t have enough information to even start thinking about truly trading. The book is good as far as it goes, but I would caution any potential reader to not act without doing deeper study and paper trading.
Become an Intelligent Real Estate Investor by David Morales
Become an Intelligent Real Estate Investor*
Doesn’t Quite Live Up to Expectations
In the blurb of this book, the author promises to tell you every tip, trick, and technique to become a real estate investor. That’s a lot for a book to live up to, and unfortunately, I don’t think the author succeeded. In fact, the first half of the book is basically about mindset, which doesn’t seem all that important to me in a relatively short book that should probably focus on some nitty-gritty new-investor advice for real estate investing. The bulk of the second half looks at the 22 ways that you can make money from real estate. These aren’t really gone into in any depth; some are just a paragraph or two. I just don’t see where this book gives you truly practical information if you’re just starting out or thinking about becoming a real estate investor. If you want to understand the concept of passive income and the mindset needed to be an entrepreneur, this book could be for you. If you aren’t sure of all the ways you can benefit from real estate investing, you might appreciate the 22 ways that he shares that I mentioned above. Outside of these ideas, I don’t see where this book is that helpful.
Kicking Financial Ass by Paul Christopher Dumont
Available at Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Kobo, Thalia, Mondadori, Angus & Robertson, Indigo (Chapters), and Bol.de
Kicking Financial Ass*
Surprisingly Helpful Book
I think it is unfortunate when an author or a publisher believes that they have to oversell a book. This book is a victim of just such a stratagem. This is actually quite a detailed, well-thought-out, and well-written book about how to get your financial house in order. So I have issues with the title, subtitle, and book blurb. The title suggests a humorous or edgy approach, and the subtitle—as it begins with a rather strange directive—supports this theory as well. The book blurb makes you think that it is going to be more about retiring early or entrepreneurship. While the book does address the former, that isn’t really the main thrust of the book. The book is really about getting your financial house in order and aligning what you do financially with your own personal values so that you can live a better present and future.
This book is meant for millennials, but I believe that most people could find benefit from it even if everything doesn’t apply to you, because of your age group or for any reason. The book is broadly divided into four parts: foundations, growth, investing, and living your life. The first part begins with getting your money mindset correct by considering your approach two money. This part moves on to take a look at where your money is going and looking at your savings. Then he looks into having an emergency fund before diving into debts. In the growth section, he discusses a salary negotiation and having a side hustle. In the investing section, he looks at index funds, retirement accounts, and real estate. The final two chapters that make up part four step more into the mindset perspective, looking at purpose in retirement and happiness with your financial goals.
This book is chock full of ideas and things for you to think about in your approach to your finances both now and in the future. The author freely admits that most of these ideas are not his own. He does have an MBA and is a certified financial analyst, but he also states that he has gathered information from various places online. Honestly, there is much that will help people here, both in mindset and in practicalities. It will get you thinking about what you do with your money now, what you want to do with it in the future, and why you want (or shouldn’t want) to do all these things. If you want financial freedom now and years from now, I would recommend reading this book—whether you are a millennial or not.
Forex Trading for Beginners by Bill Sykes and Timothy Gibbs
Forex Trading for Beginners*
Great Introduction to Forex Trading
While I don’t know a lot about trading currencies, I believe this book is a good initiation for people who are looking to go into that. The authors talk about what Forex is, defining terms and giving a little history. They share the mindset that you need to have to successfully trade in this market, or at least be comfortable with it. They go over the practical ideas, like the different platforms you can trade on and analytical software that you can use to help you figure out your plan. They get down to brass tacks, looking at different ways that you can analyze the market. The book gets completely hands on in the section where they tell you step by step how to set up your first trade. This book is chock-full of easily understandable information that can start you on your way to successful, or at least more informed, Forex trading.
How to Day Trade Penny Stocks by Bill Sykes & Timothy Gibbs
How to Day Trade Penny Stocks for Beginners*
The Skinny on Day Trading Penny Stocks
I have recently read these authors’ day trading book for beginners, and I felt that it lacked in the information needed for the true beginner. I was wondering if it would be the same for this book. I was delighted to discover that this book is chock-full of information and contains enough of it for the serious beginner to contemplate whether or not to actually start day trading penny stocks as well as the best steps about how to do it. The book begins with the basics and gets more complicated as it goes along, but the authors do so in such a way that the beginner isn’t overwhelmed with the technical details. While there are plenty of industry-specific terms in this book, they are introduced gradually and explained well. The authors give all sorts of practical information, like how to ease your way into penny stock trading and how to avoid being scammed. If you’re thinking of trading penny stocks, I highly recommend this book as it will give you solid information and advice.
Day Trading for Beginners By Bill Sykes and Timothy Gibbs
Day Trading for Beginners*
OK as an Intro to the Topic, But Lacks Depth
This book is full of hints and strategies for day traders. I don’t know enough about the markets or day trading to know if what they give is actually good advice. I always place a more substantial burden on books that claim to be for beginners. I do not think that this book alone will allow a beginner to start day trading successfully. While some terms are defined, the authors use other ones that are not as well explained, which would make the book confusing for some beginners. Plus, the book lacks the depth of explanation that a beginner needs. I definitely think there is some useful information here that would help somebody interested to start day trading, but they will need more to truly get them going. One bizarre thing, too: the names of the authors in the blurb are different than the names on the cover or inside the book; one author has a different last name, and the other has a different first name!
Options Trading for Beginners by Tim Shek
Options Trading for Beginners*
Well Organized, But May Be Confusing for True Beginners
This book is well organized, which I always appreciate in a nonfiction book. The author starts with the basics, first explaining the concept of options and then defining terms used in options trading. Then he goes into covered calls and even gives a step-by-step way to do the sell and the buy version of this. He then talks about buying and selling puts. The book ends with advanced strategies and information about bull and bear markets (and how to profit with either). I felt like the book needed more clarity to be fully accessible for true newbies to option trading. The definition section is definitely a good idea, but I found the definitions confusing. The book definitely had some issues with grammar, punctuation, and usage. I don’t know enough about options trading to say if what he writes is good information or advice, but I do appreciate that he does address tricky issues like volatility and risk as well as how to be careful.
100 Stocks that a Young Warren Buffett Might Buy by James Pattersenn, Jr.
100 Stocks that a Young Warren Buffett Might Buy*
Interesting Analysis of Historically Winning Stock Strategy
In this rather long book, the author first gives some background on both Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger, his right-hand man, before giving a brief analysis of their investing style. The author then goes on to provide just a little bit of advice about how to manage your portfolio and other stock advice. But the bulk of the book by a large margin is the hundred stocks mentioned in the title. The author does give his choosing criteria based on his analysis of Buffett and Munger’s investing style. This is definitely not a book that you sit and just read straight through. You can do that with the first part, the more theoretical part, but the section on each of the specific stocks themselves should only be taken in small doses. The author made me curious enough that I think it would be interesting to follow these companies to see if he is correct in his assessments. All in all, I found it to be an interesting glimpse into two men who have amassed such wealth, as well as into the mind of the author—whom I’ve read before. I find books were people make analyses like these to be fascinating.