THE MsSPENT MONEY GUIDE: Get More of What You Want with What You Earn

Deborah Knuckey, Author, Knuckey, Author THE MsSPENT MONEY GUIDE: Get More of What You Want with Wha $24.95 (320p) ISBN 978-0-471-39634-5

There's no "right" way to spend, says Knuckey, a personal finance consultant who calls her system "coaching" not "counseling," since "you may never understand the details" of your feelings about money, but "you can still change your behavior." Happily, her behavior modification plan involves no penny-pinching, few rules and not much of that "b-word" (budgeting), which is about as much fun as dieting. The bottom line to Knuckey's system is her focus on "Conscious Spending," which means only buying what really makes you happy. While there are the obligatory passages on the trap of escalating wants and the ball-and-chain of debt, her main message is positive: focus on satisfying yourself, and you'll never lack motivation. Apart from such truisms, there are occasional mentions of more radical notions, like the idea that having enough is a very real concept for people who have come to the end of their "journey of self-expression." Knuckey's program is basically sensible and unthreatening, low on "shoulds" and sprinkled with humor. Her own personal lifetime spending program, for instance, assumes "that I will die broke"—why support lazy heirs? And, she advises, don't play the lottery: "if you want to buy hope, buy a drink at a singles bar!" By the end of the book, a complex budgeting plan sneaks in anyway, but readers who've gotten that far won't mind. (Mar.)

Forecast:While there's no dearth of personal finance self-help books on the market, Knuckey's down-to-earth tone should appeal to 20-somethings, especially considering her online presence, detailed in the book's final pages.

Reviewed on: 02/19/2001
Release date: 02/01/2001
Genre: Nonfiction
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