cover image The Lazy Person's Guide to Investing

The Lazy Person's Guide to Investing

Paul B. Farrell, , read by Nick Summers. . Listen & Live Audio, $19.95 (0pp) ISBN 978-1-59316-078-4

This power-to-the-people personal finance book is heavy on motivation: investing is not rocket science; anyone can get started with as little as $25 a month; various financial products eliminate the middle man and charge waifishly thin expenses (which, as Farrell notes, is the only sure-fire way to get a great return). Summers brings great enthusiasm to Farrell's populist manifesto, whether he is praising Vanguard to the skies (does Vanguard get a kickback for this gushing and relentless product endorsement?) or urging people to set up foolproof automatic investments from their paychecks or checking accounts. At times, the marriage of Summers's syrupy voice and some of Farrell's cheesier examples—such as a monkey that allegedly got better returns than Wall Street gurus merely by choosing investments at random—can err on the juvenile side. Also, the gimmicky names of Farrell's various portfolios, such as the Couch Potato and the No-Brainer, begin to run together in the audio version. Still, there is solid advice, and Summers is a competent and sometimes charming narrator. Simultaneous release with the Warner paperback (Reviews, Dec. 15, 2003). (June)