Most helpful critical review
32 of 33 people found the following review helpful
Average Read Among Many...
on October 30, 2004
Stacy Johnson gives us a decent first work in "Life or Debt". I have come across many personal finance books - some bad, some good. This one ranks somewhere squarely in the middle.
To be frank, I was able to conclude within a chapter or so, that the book was written by the proposed author as opposed to a professional writer. The language used throughout the book seemed to be "dumbed down", either intentionally or not (not necessarily a bad thing).
If you've read quite a few books related to personal finance, then you are by now familiar with the basic concepts used to accumulate wealth and beat down debt, ie., save a tenth of every paycheck to invest, pay off the highest interest debt first, consult with professional third parties if needed, etc. A lot of this information by now is getting totally redundant. Only a complete novice will receive insight from these age-old tips.
Now that the critical stuff is out of the way, I will praise this book for the things it does right. The chapter devoted to saving money entitled, "205 Ways to Save" is excellent. The majority of the tips are first rate money savers. Some of the tips may be familiar to seasoned readers and others will seem like common sense, but there are also some genuine money-saving winners among the selections. I feel that if the reader used even a small portion of the tips a substantial savings will be realized, especially if used on a regular basis. The author even offers up an informative chapter on how to deal with the big, bad credit bureaus.
Stacy Johnson gives us a solid, but far from perfect, first effort involving the world of personal finance and all the follies that can go with it. He offers insightful tips and hope to many people who are fighting to better their financial situation. It can only get better from here.