zoemajik (zoemajik) wrote in 50bookchallenge,

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Book #11: 50 Book Challenge 2012

The Complete Cheapskate - Mary Hunt

Last year, I read quite a few books on frugality and ideas from self-proclaimed "cheapskates."  Most of them are garbage.  Unfortunately, this one is no different. 

I have some problems with this book:
  • The title.  This book has nothing to do with being a true cheapskate.  Most of it is advice on how to get out of debt.  And it's not complete.  Other than the debt advice, it's very vague.
  • The tips.  The ones found in this book are not only repetitive, they can be found anywhere.  The same tips found in magazines and all over the web. 
  • The few good tips.  Somewhat vague.  "Use less."  Okay, but most people don't know how to do that specifically.  Use less of what, and how?  "Cook from scratch."  Okay.  But what things should I cook or make, and what should i buy?  "Buy in bulk."  Where?  What?  Guidelines?  These tips are useless because they're too broad in scope, and can easily lead to overspending, unless you know how and what to do.

The best part of this book is in the back, where the author has included a section of specific tips provided by the readers of her newsletter.  Most of these are commonly seen tips, but there are a few good ones in there that not many people do, or know about.  Sad how the best part of the book wasn't even written by the author!

My advice?  If you're looking for awesome frugal tips that are detailed and can fit into any lifestyle, check out the Tightwad Gazette series by Amy Dacyczyn.  If it's debt relief you're after, Dave Ramsey's your man.  And leave this book alone.  It's not worth your time.

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