Sage, grandfatherly, often-amusing advice on watching one’s pennies.

READ REVIEW

MONEY GAMES

: 85 FUN WAYS TO SAVE MONEY AND ATTRACT ABUNDANCE

Financial coach Petrick offers dozens of strategies to save money while maintaining a sense of humor.

This book is about making money on a very human scale–as such, readers can, and more than likely should, start following its commonsensical advice today. The author also wants readers to have fun in the process, so he keeps his tone light and mirthful and he provides ways to achieve the satisfaction of another dollar in the bank. Petrick’s advice is homespun: get AAA and rewards credit cards (and always pay off those credit cards); get free stuff by browsing the Internet; and pursue hobbies with minimal ongoing costs or, even better, those that may add a small second-income stream like fly-tying, pottery or photography. He recommends that readers drink a glass of wine at home before going to a restaurant, do their own laundry, clean their own houses and ditch labor-saving, and money-gobbling, items like juice boxes and electric shoe polishers. Into the mix he blends some more serious tidbits, recommending that readers never stop learning. Though he doesn’t tender specific investment tools, the author counsels readers to stay on top of these methods by devoting 15 minutes to them each day. Petrick’s primary objective is encouraging readers to live on 70 percent of their salaries and invest 10 percent in each of three areas: paying off debt, savings and charity. In the vein of power-of-positive-thinking titles, he writes, “Your personal financial life will improve in direct proportion to the amount of money you release toward improving our world.” The exact percentage of charity doesn’t matter, he writes, since it’s the attitude that counts. The author reiterates the old chestnuts–avoid debt, build an emergency fund, invest with your eyes open and learn from mistakes–but what powers the book is the doctrine of steady, disciplined accumulation. Petrick counsels that readers should make the savings game fun by treating it just so–as a game.

Sage, grandfatherly, often-amusing advice on watching one’s pennies.

Pub Date: Sept. 15, 2008

ISBN: 978-0-595-71907-5

Page Count: -

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: Jan. 4, 2011

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A deftly argued case for a new kind of socialism that, while sure to inspire controversy, bears widespread discussion.

CAPITAL AND IDEOLOGY

A massive investigation of economic history in the service of proposing a political order to overcome inequality.

Readers who like their political manifestoes in manageable sizes, à la Common Sense or The Communist Manifesto, may be overwhelmed by the latest from famed French economist Piketty (Top Incomes in France in the Twentieth Century: Inequality and Redistribution, 1901-1998, 2014, etc.), but it’s a significant work. The author interrogates the principal forms of economic organization over time, from slavery to “non-European trifunctional societies,” Chinese-style communism, and “hypercapitalist” orders, in order to examine relative levels of inequality and its evolution. Each system is founded on an ideology, and “every ideology, no matter how extreme it may seem in its defense of inequality, expresses a certain idea of social justice.” In the present era, at least in the U.S., that idea of social justice would seem to be only that the big ones eat the little ones, the principal justification being that the wealthiest people became rich because they are “the most enterprising, deserving, and useful.” In fact, as Piketty demonstrates, there’s more to inequality than the mere “size of the income gap.” Contrary to hypercapitalist ideology and its defenders, the playing field is not level, the market is not self-regulating, and access is not evenly distributed. Against this, Piketty arrives at a proposed system that, among other things, would redistribute wealth across societies by heavy taxation, especially of inheritances, to create a “participatory socialism” in which power is widely shared and trade across nations is truly free. The word “socialism,” he allows, is a kind of Pandora’s box that can scare people off—and, he further acknowledges, “the Russian and Czech oligarchs who buy athletic teams and newspapers may not be the most savory characters, but the Soviet system was a nightmare and had to go.” Yet so, too, writes the author, is a capitalism that rewards so few at the expense of so many.

A deftly argued case for a new kind of socialism that, while sure to inspire controversy, bears widespread discussion.

Pub Date: March 10, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-674-98082-2

Page Count: 976

Publisher: Belknap/Harvard Univ.

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2020

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A timely, vividly realized reminder to slow down and harness the restorative wonders of serenity.

STILLNESS IS THE KEY

An exploration of the importance of clarity through calmness in an increasingly fast-paced world.

Austin-based speaker and strategist Holiday (Conspiracy: Peter Thiel, Hulk Hogan, Gawker, and the Anatomy of Intrigue, 2018, etc.) believes in downshifting one’s life and activities in order to fully grasp the wonder of stillness. He bolsters this theory with a wide array of perspectives—some based on ancient wisdom (one of the author’s specialties), others more modern—all with the intent to direct readers toward the essential importance of stillness and its “attainable path to enlightenment and excellence, greatness and happiness, performance as well as presence.” Readers will be encouraged by Holiday’s insistence that his methods are within anyone’s grasp. He acknowledges that this rare and coveted calm is already inside each of us, but it’s been worn down by the hustle of busy lives and distractions. Recognizing that this goal requires immense personal discipline, the author draws on the representational histories of John F. Kennedy, Buddha, Tiger Woods, Fred Rogers, Leonardo da Vinci, and many other creative thinkers and scholarly, scientific texts. These examples demonstrate how others have evolved past the noise of modern life and into the solitude of productive thought and cleansing tranquility. Holiday splits his accessible, empowering, and sporadically meandering narrative into a three-part “timeless trinity of mind, body, soul—the head, the heart, the human body.” He juxtaposes Stoic philosopher Seneca’s internal reflection and wisdom against Donald Trump’s egocentric existence, with much of his time spent “in his bathrobe, ranting about the news.” Holiday stresses that while contemporary life is filled with a dizzying variety of “competing priorities and beliefs,” the frenzy can be quelled and serenity maintained through a deliberative calming of the mind and body. The author shows how “stillness is what aims the arrow,” fostering focus, internal harmony, and the kind of holistic self-examination necessary for optimal contentment and mind-body centeredness. Throughout the narrative, he promotes that concept mindfully and convincingly.

A timely, vividly realized reminder to slow down and harness the restorative wonders of serenity.

Pub Date: Oct. 1, 2019

ISBN: 978-0-525-53858-5

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Portfolio

Review Posted Online: July 21, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 2019

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