Saturday, 19 December 2009

Personal Finance books I have known and loved

I found myself in Waterstones today, and realised my first port of call in a book shop is always the personal finance section.

I'm not sure when my 'thing' for personal finance books began.  It was probably around the time I discovered Alvin Hall about 10 years ago. Anyway I thought I'd list some random musings about them here - I won't go as far as declaring this a book review.  If there are any others you think I'd enjoy please do leave a note in the comments below.

I love this book.  It is so well thumbed it won't even close anymore - that's why it is bottom of the pile in the photo. Okay this is written some time ago, and is very US centric so is less relevant than other books - but it is the 'can do' attitude of this author that is so inspiring.  If you haven't read this and are interested in living on less it really is worth the money - it is often referred to as the frugal living 'bible'. 

An interesting take on personal finance.  Explores womens relationship with money and moving away from the 'my knight in shining armour will come rescue me (and contribute to a stakeholder pension fund on my behalf)' approach.  Gosh that was a long sentence.  But I hope you get the point.  I liked this book a lot. 

Harry bought me this last Christmas. Beautifully presented.  Perhaps aimed at the Boden crowd who usually shop at Waitrose and need to cut back on the champers.  So worth the read but you are not going to find any earth shattering revelations in here about your relationship with money.  

Now this is good - particularly the first section that discusses prevalent attitudes to money in society why we are all motivated to be spendthrifts.  The second section is devoted to practical ideas - and some of them were rather far fetched, and dare I say it somewhat preachy.  But the first section makes up for this, so again worth the read.

The secret, in case you're wondering is this, 'don't spend more than you earn'.  Simple enough, but a nice story leads you to this revelationThis book had me cutting up my credit cards before I had finished it.  This was some years ago (and sadly the cards are partly back in use.....perhaps I should read this again!)

This book is a compilation of tips from the 'Old Style Forum' on Martin Lewis' site, Moneysaving Expert.  Whilst I have a lot of time for him, I felt a bit dissappointed with this book.  It was as if he had paid some work experience student to trawl through the forum and turn individuals comments into a book, but they didn't edit the rubbish out.  Is that too harsh?

So tell me...can you recommend any other books I can add to this list?


  1. I have read most of those, there is another one that I 100% recommend something like: Why Love Is Not Enough A Smart Woman's Guide to Money. Fabulous book!

  2. Oh thanks FT - will check it out.

  3. When you mention The Thrift Book, do you mean the one by India knight, from your comments it sounds like it and your review sums it up in a nutshell. I can't see how an author and someone who writes for The Times would have a bloody clue about saving money in her Issa dresses whilst getting her brows threaded at Harrods! I only bought it because I loved her book "The Shops" some years back and I still refer to it now. Although like you I am fascinated by Personal Finance Books, I find I get much better tips from Bloggers!

  4. Recessionista - yes it is India's book. Realised I've been a bit blonde and not included authors names in my post! Glad you agree with my 'review' of sorts. Although I will admit to having a Boden habit myself (fulfilled only at Sale time) and having made the occasional trip to Waitrose!!!

    I've now edited so the titles are hyperlinks and take you to the books in question on Amazon.

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