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VINE VOICEon May 3, 2010
The subtitle of this latest book by Michelle McKinney Hammond is "How to Still be Fabulous When You're Broke" and she is pretty fabulous. But girlfriend, I have mixed feelings about this book.

Michelle McKinney Hammond has written an overview of how to live large on a small budget. She gives some sound advice: shop at discount stores, separate your wants from your needs, clip coupons, don't buy more than you can afford. She encourages women to focus on their relationship with God over their relationship with credit cards.

More autobiography than advice, some of her tips are definitely big city, single gal: make dinner out of cocktail hour snacks in hotel lobbies. This won't work for the mom schlepping it out in the suburbs. Never having had the lifestyle Ms. Hammond once enjoyed, I found my self thinking "I already knew that" through most of the book.

However, she has an incredibly warm and engaging style that makes me want to read more of her writing or hear her speak at a conference. I'd recommend this book for Divas whose fortunes have fallen with the stock market. For the rest of us middle class folks, I say "Girlfriend, we're way ahead of you."

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Tyndale House Publishers as part of their book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255 : "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."
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on May 6, 2010
Divanomics tells the story of looking, feeling and staying fabulous, without living beyond your means. The information in this book is up to date, relevant, real and will offer help to DIVA's everywhere. In Divanomics, Michelle McKinney Hammond shows the reader, that we can make changes to get out of debt without giving up everything. Who says YOU can't be fabulous while living on a budget? Not Michelle McKinney Hammond... And Divanomics she will show you how. In fact Michelle shares her personal financial struggles and experiences to back the advice she gives. This book is also great because it offer fresh insights with practical tips, that can be used in everyday life.

If you're overspending has gotten you into a financial rut, then Divanomics will show you how to adjust to a lifestyle you can afford. Divanomics is filled with fabulous frugal tips on fashion, entertaining, housing, beauty, home decor and more. The book is aimed at women, so with Mothers Day right around the corner grab a few copies today and share them with all the DIVAS in your life.

Disclosure: I received this book free from Tyndale House Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
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on July 3, 2010
I was so excited when I got the chance to recieve a copy of Divanomics to review from Tyndale House Publishers. As a stay at home (recently become work at home mom) in a family of soon to be 4 making hubbies lower ranking military paycheck stttrrreeetttcchhh is a valuable trait to have! I'm all about learning "how to still be fabulous when you're broke"!

Unfortunately I felt that this book didn't really help me do that! Michelle is coming from a lifestyle that I will never be a part of, and ended up dropping out of it based on some foolish decisions on her part mixed with the rotten economy. As I read the first several chapters in which she describes all of this I kept thinking, "Ok...so we get it, you were rich-now you're broke-when are we getting to the good tips and tricks?!" She did eventually get there but virtually every single thing she talked about fell into the "been there, done that" category for me. Although it was all great, wonderful advice for someone who's been rich and has never had to stop and think where each penny is going before, as someone who's never had extra money lying around I felt like I could honestly write a book with more and better "how to save money" tips in it. She did list several websites I hadn't hear of with resources on them and I plan on checking out, and for that reason alone I will probably keep the book.

So if you're a fabulous single girl who's used to buying Christian Dior, has her own accountant and is suddenly down on her luck--buy all means pick up this book.

For the rest of us I'd recommend reading your favorite Frugal Living Blog for the most unique ideas and tips on how to stretch your dollar!
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on December 21, 2010
Huh. Really. All common sense from a single gal not struggling. Shopping at discount stores...common sense. Cooking, living within our means... common sense. Good read, good writing, with some sound everyday life advice. Just seems a bit redundant. Nothing new.
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on November 19, 2010
I'm not sure that I'm really the target audience for this book. Yes, I'd like to budget better and get tips for spending less money, but this book seemed to be more for people who had expensive tastes (something I've never had) and it seemed to be geared more towards single woman. Since I'm a married mother of three, my life looks a lot different than the authors.

I think if you're looking for a good book on budgeting and financing, check out something by Dave Ramsey. In fact, the author even suggests his books in Divanomics, so I think she's aware that she's not an expert on finance. What this book reads more like is sitting down for a cup of coffee with a girlfriend who found herself in financial trouble, figured out how to help herself, and wants to give you her advice and experiences.

I think what I liked best about the book were the little snippets at the end of each chapter called "What's a diva to do". These were basically a summary of the chapter, but in the form of a list of things you could try. Since I'm all about lists, these were good for me. This is a fun book about spending less, but a lot of the time I felt like she was too focused on getting stuff--like what she could get out of other people for free. There were times that it wasn't in a bad way, like trading clothes with your friends, but there were other times where it seemed like she was giving pointers for getting men (or others) to buy you things or give you things. It rubbed me the wrong way a little bit.

All in all, this was a quick read (when I actually picked it up and read it), but definitely not the best if you're looking to get your finances in order. If you're looking for something lighthearted about finances, though, this may be a good option.

*I received this book for review from Tyndale publishers.
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on May 13, 2010
Divanomics is a book aimed at teaching a diva how to be frugal and make better financial decisions. Michele herself has suffered several times financially from her spending habits and economic downturns. She tries to share the importance of good decisions when it comes to money in a funny, casual way. At the end of each chapter is a section called "What's a Diva to do?" In this area you ask yourself some questions and assess your thinking, spending, and monetary habits.

I can't say I learned anything really new from this book. I could go forever without ever hearing the word 'diva' again though! I think Michelle went a little overboard on that part. Also, I thought she basically reiterated the lessons and advice we have heard from Dave Ramsey, Suze Orzman, and a few other financial adviser's for years.

If you have never read a financial book before then you might appreciate some of her advice and reiteration of the ideas from the other great financial adviser's. All in all, it was just mediocre for me.

*This book was graciously provided to me by Tyndale publishing for review purposes. Above is my honest review of the book.
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on January 30, 2014
I purchased this book hoping it would have some valuable information on keeping myself fabulous while being yeah definitely broke. That's what the title promised right? No very very wrong - the authors "revelations" were spoiled little diva recommendations such as "don't be afraid to ask Daddy for money". Yes you think I am joking but no there was an entire chapter devoted to this! OMG - well Ms Diva - what if Daddy isn't even here on earth or doesn't have any money? What if I can't find a man to squeeze for money? Maybe become a prostitute or exotic dancer? Ms. Divas other "revelations" were those common things that the masses have done for years such as (get ready for this astounding information), Use coupons! Yes there was a chapter devoted to don't be embarrassed to use coupons! No practical advice of doubling coupons, stockpiling, etc no just the revelation of people actually use coupons! Guess what Ms. Diva I use food stamps too - want to write me a chapter on that?
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on December 5, 2011
I do not believe myself to be the target audience of this book, but after suffering through 2/3 of it, I'm not sure who is.

Here's a summary for those of you considering this book: author is a single author who spent too much and had to face the consequences, which led her to learn moderation (think Carrie Bradshaw if Sex and the City ladies ever had to pay their shoe bills).

The premise isn't too bad, but the writing style passes the line from 'colloquial' into 'downright annoying'. Every couple of sentences, she's telling you "get real, girlfriend" or something of that ilk. Furthermore, there are many Christianity-meets-Consumerism passages, which certainly alienates a Christian, but not extremely religious reader like me. Very little actual advice or guidance. In the beginning, the author says she's not a finance guru by any means, and well, I would go one step further and say that she is still a novice when it comes to keeping finances in order.

So, in summary, this books is:
- thin in content, advice, and knowledge
- thick in attitude, religion, and poor writing

Even for free, don't waste your time. There are far better free sources available online.
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on May 8, 2010
"Divanomics: How to Still Be Fabulous When You're Broke" surprised me, in a most rewarding way!

I expected a standard "how to." Instead I found pages of lively narrative, soul-searching questions, and practical, easy-to-implement advice.

I expected a "diva" attitude (you know, the "waah-I-can't-eat-at-$1000-a-plate-functions any more".) What I found in Divanomics is a realistic point-of-view that speaks to all women, and most enjoyably, a lot of frugal living steeped with spirituality.

Overall, this is a great guide for the newly frugal or for those looking to develop a more faith-based resource to help you cope with the stark realities of today's economy.

Disclosure: I received this book free from Tyndale House Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.
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on March 24, 2010
DIVA's every where shout hallelujah!

Divanomics is just the book you've been praying for.
Relevant, real, transparent and inspiring,
Divanomics will help you shed the shame
you may be carrying along with debt.

Regardless of your financial situation,
Hammond will remind you
that you are not alone while taking you on a soul
journey to freedom, fearlessness
and fabulousness all in the blink
of a MAC mascared eye.

You can be fabulous when you're
broke - Divanomics will show you how.

Grab your copy today!

Marina Woods, GoodGirlBookClubOnline
The #1 Destination for Today's Aspiring Woman
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