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The Secret Currency of Love: The Unabashed Truth About Women, Money, and Relationships Paperback – December 29, 2009
From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. While women have made enormous strides in their earning power and financial self-sufficiency in the past century, research shows that many would still be very willing to marry for money, underscoring the complicated nature of women's feelings about social roles, independence and finances. This collection of revealing essays examines women's complex money relationships with partners, parents, children and other loved ones. Contributors, including Kathryn Harrison (The Kiss), Amy Sohn (Run Catch Kiss), Julia Glass (Three Junes) and former Simon & Schuster president Joni Evans, offer intimate glimpses into the shame, fear, insecurities, power struggles and psychological evolutions surrounding earning, spending, sharing, coordinating and managing finances inside and outside of romantic relationships. Unstintingly—even shockingly—candid, the writers describe how their feelings about finances shaped or contributed to good and bad marriages, abuse, divorces, breakups, crushes or even avoidance of relationships. This exceptionally honest and poignant collection deserves a place on the bookshelves of women of all ages, backgrounds, income, net worth levels and walks of life. (Jan.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
“The most interesting anthology I’ve seen in years. I read it with fascination, to the very last page.” (Cathi Hanauer, novelist and editor of The Bitch in the House)
“Introducing the 27 emotionally invested and powerfully introspective essays in THE SECRET CURRENCY OF LOVE. All the bases are covered here, from the hard lessons women learn (and impart) to the inextricability of romance and cold hard cash.” (Elle)
“A compelling new anthology, The Secret Currency of Love: The Unabashed Truth about Women, Money, and Relationships. In it, a number of prominent female writers (including Julia Glass, Lauri Abraham and Joni Evans) spill the beans about money in their own lives.” (Time magazine)
“A compelling new anthology that offers a fascinating look at how women view money that is, by turns witty, scandalous, poignant and heart-rending.” (San Antonio Express-News)
“Multiple themes are explored in personal and heartfelt ways: money is success, failure, control, submission, love and hate. Money can mean the chance at motherhood or the ruin of a marriage. In the end, money is everything and nothing.” (Forbes)
“Well-written first-person accounts result in an engrossing read throughout. It’s easy to be affected by their experiences, with emotions running the gamut of happy to dismay to sadness at some outcomes.” (New Straits Times (Malaysia))
“This exceptionally honest and poignant collection deserves a place on the bookshelves of women of all ages, backgrounds, income, net worth levels and walks of life.” (Publishers Weekly (starred review and Pick of the Week))
“Funny, insightful and brutally honest, this book is Sex & The City meets The Wall Street Journal, with a sprinkle of Dostoevsky. Hilary Black has inspired stellar writers to wax poetic (and at times, hilariously pathetic) on the last taboo: money. Juicy, smart, dramatic and insightful—an addictive read.” (Beth Kobliner, author of Get a Financial Life: Personal Finance in Your Twenties and Thirties)
“Everyone wants to know their worth, in both love and money — but the lessons lie in the tension between the two. The women who authored this incredible collection of essays dare to get inside that conflict and unpeel the complicated truths that make up our life stories.” (Stacy Morrison, Editor-in-Chief, Redbook Magazine)
“Deeply honest and scandalously revealing, THE SECRET CURRENCY OF LOVE offers a mirror into our own complicated feelings about money and relationships—and every woman who reads it will see herself in its pages. You won’t be able to put it down!” (Liz Lange, Founder, Liz Lange Maternity)
Top customer reviews
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This book really begins a conversation on the taboo subject of money that is an important one to have - especially now when the economy is such an issue. The stories are skillfully written and really do resonate for women of all ages.
Hats off to Black for such a timely read!
Anne Richmond, Washington, DC
However, in the end, I have to give it only three stars simply because it is incomplete.
The women are almost all upper middle class or upper class, almost all of them are writers of some sort, educated, almost all are living in New York and more than likely white. And even though some of them had some very lean times when they were young adults first starting out in their field, most of them are relatively affluent now. And that is where this book falls short. This isn't a book about women in general but about a very small sample of women.
The book would have presented a much better understanding of women, relationships and money had the book included women of different socio-economic classes, immigrants, current college students, domestics etc.
In Severance, Jennifer Wolff Perrine writes about her adoption of a baby girl from a poor married couple. Money meant adoption for her. But what did it mean to the baby's biological mother, Kelli.
In another, there is mention of a maid named Ivana. What does money mean to her. A woman who is an immigrant, who is apparently smart and hardworking but it destined to be the maid. A woman who, despite all her qualities, is probably going to be a domestic all her life, living her life next to all this wealth but never achieving it herself. Does she consider herself rich? Is she compared to her family members in the "old country."
So, even though I think the book has merit, I wouldn't say it was a good book to read to understand how money influences women as a whole. We only learn how it influences a small sample of society ..a sample that most people would consider priviledge.
It was very interesting to see several essays wherein women much younger than my generation (I am 45 soon) are managing money so incredibly poorly. They have options at much earlier ages than we did, and have for the most part been raised in a culture here in America where they can pursue just about any career they like. But still the myth of the prince lives on... and the myth of rescue. Also distressing was the lack of knowledge about basic money skills so many of them had, and on top of that, a total lack of concern about it... or a paralyzing fear that has kept them from getting a grip on financial realities. Especially in these trying financial times, women of all ages need to set aside the rescue fantasy. Far better to build your own succeses and savings and THEN meet Mr. Wonderful... even Mr. Wonderful can get hit by a bus, after all, and then where are you?
This book is a way to look in the mirror and see yourself. I'm betting you will find something of yourself in at least one of the essays, or a you from the past that maybe you're grown beyond. And for getting real about money, read Suze Orman, the financial pages, and your bills and bank statements!! REGULARLY AND ON TIME!! The prince is not coming. Earn and manage the gold yourselves. Share if you are able and want to... but not because you feel you have to.
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