A seasoned financial journalist offers easy-to-follow tips for building wealth in his debut.
Brennan, a longtime business reporter for outlets such as Bloomberg News, offers down-to-earth financial advice that aims to help the average Joe become and stay rich. He begins with a simple assumption: “Everyone does want your money.” The best way for innocent, hardworking Americans to protect themselves from ruthless financial sharks, he says, is to be aware of his book’s eight Cs: counsel, commentary, career, costs, crooks, castles (real estate), currency and the investment choices of a family called the Coads. Keeping these in mind, he argues, will help one think like a successful executive and build wealth. Each chapter of this slim volume delves into a different area, such as whom to turn to for financial advice or the pleasures and perils of investing in real estate. The author’s tone is no-nonsense, and he doesn’t pull punches; among his words of wisdom: “Don’t ever take advice from someone wearing a Che Guevara shirt” and “You can find…houses in Detroit now for only a few thousand dollars. Don’t buy one.” That said, the blunt, straight talk sometimes veers into curmudgeonly territory, as when the author lambasts his friend’s decision to become a massage therapist or dismisses Occupy Wall Street as a “crowd of youngsters.” Still, Brennan is well-informed and often persuasive, even when his advice runs counter to conventional wisdom; at one point, for example, he offers a detailed argument for buying new, rather than used, cars. Also helpful are his many detailed illustrations of financial concepts, including a chart that shows why investors are better off buying a bond than a boat. His section on investment scams is particularly enlightening; he offers telling anecdotes about the behavior of con artists, drawn from his own time as a reporter. Sometimes, however, Brennan’s media background gets in the way, particularly in the chapter on “commentary,” which he takes as an opportunity to discuss the implosion of the daily-newspaper business, the rise of social media and the importance of fact checking. It’s engaging material on its own, but it reads like a chapter from another book.
Brennan’s tell-it-like-it-is approach and unique perspective turn this financial book into an engaging read.
Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.
Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").
This early reader is an excellent introduction to the March on Washington in 1963 and the important role in the march played by Martin Luther King Jr. Ruffin gives the book a good, dramatic start: “August 28, 1963. It is a hot summer day in Washington, D.C. More than 250,00 people are pouring into the city.” They have come to protest the treatment of African-Americans here in the US. With stirring original artwork mixed with photographs of the events (and the segregationist policies in the South, such as separate drinking fountains and entrances to public buildings), Ruffin writes of how an end to slavery didn’t mark true equality and that these rights had to be fought for—through marches and sit-ins and words, particularly those of Dr. King, and particularly on that fateful day in Washington. Within a year the Civil Rights Act of 1964 had been passed: “It does not change everything. But it is a beginning.” Lots of visual cues will help new readers through the fairly simple text, but it is the power of the story that will keep them turning the pages. (Easy reader. 6-8)