I was asked to review another "fashion related" book:
SHOO, Jimmy Choo!The Modern Girl's Guide to Spending Less and Saving More
by Catey Hill.
While at first it might look like a book focusing on fashion advice, SHOO, Jimmy Choo! is actually a very "fun to read" personal finance book, that focuses on young female readers (about 25 years old) with a passion (problem) for spending.
I have read many personal finance books from big financial gurus like Suze Orman and Peter Lynch, and at first I was worried that I was going to get bored reading yet another personal finance 101 book.
Fortunately, Catey Hill approached the sometimes dry subject with a fun attitude and while I was familiar with most of the content, it was still interesting to read and at times it even made me chuckle (financial books are not usually a laughing matter).
Chapter by chapter, SHOO, Jimmy Choo! delves deeper and deeper into each of life's sectors, by first analyzing it and then providing the necessary suggestions that will help a person achieve financial freedom.
The first chapters guide you in understanding what is your spending style (shopping personality). You can take your pick between Impulsive Spender, Compulsive Spender, Social Spender... I am an Emotional Spender, meaning I am more likely to spend if I am happy or sad.
After you've recognized your weakness, the author then suggests ways to overcome your spending triggers. For example, among tips for the Emotional Spenders are:
1) If you are feeling down/happy/whatever your trigger emotion is, don't take your credit card with you, just bring limited cash.
2) Try an activity that will make you feel better (or that you'll enjoy), but that won't put a dent in your finances. Go for a run, take a walk with your girlfriends, lay out in the park, or rent a movie.
And then the book turns into a full-fledged personal finance introduction book, with advice on how to set up a budget, how to tackle your debt and how to use your credit card wisely.
It also touches subjects like how to save and invest your money, how to manage student loans, what kind of insurance you need, how to advance in your career, interesting facts about taxes and tips for financially sound relationships.
The two chapters that I really enjoyed were, ironically, the ones focused on buying: buying a car and buying a house. Here Catey Hill gives out excellent and specific advice on what kind of research one needs to do:
1) To look up the dealer invoice price for the car you want, visit Edmunds.com
2) If you are buying a used car, visit kbb.com and look up the value of the used car
3) To compare mortgage interest rates in your area, check out the Mortgage section at Bankrate.com
The only fault I've found in SHOO, Jimmy Choo! is that at times it can be repetitive, but considering that it is geared towards readers new to the subject, it makes sense that the author wants to make sure that each new lesson sticks before moving on to the next one.
Is this book for you?
If you still are in your 20s and you don't know much about personal finance and want to learn, yes! If you are in your 30s or older, some of the book's advice won't apply to you, but you could still benefit from most of it.
How to win a copy of this book:
For a chance to win a copy of SHOO, Jimmy Choo! leave a comment on this post with your financial reason for needing/wanting this book, by Monday, February 1st, 2010. I will pick a random winner on Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010. US addresses only. Good Luck!
For more information, and to enter the $500 Shoo, Jimmy Choo! Shopping Spree Sweepstakes, visit www.ShooJimmyChoo.com. You can also follow Catey Hill on Twitter @cateyhill
And the winner is... Victoria! Congratulations! :)