Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Life changing read. A book that shatters my prior conceptions about money and my personal finances. A harsh moment of epiphany where I realized that all my life I have been having the "Poor Dad" mindset. Growing up I was told to work hard, go to University and find a steady job. This is the "Poor Dad" mindset, because we are using our time and effort to generate the money ourselves. The "Rich Dad" does the opposite- he makes the money work and NOT himself.
I am fairly familiar with a few classic finance books such as Napolean Hills' 'Think and Grow Rich' and some of Peter Lynch's financial books about the stock market. Robert Kiyosaki book was life changing, however, because it altered my perception of reality. It made me realize that instead of working hard at a job and saving for retirement through pensions that there are other ways to achieve financial freedom. I am eternally grateful for finding this book and to my fellow book reviewers online that have been suggesting this book for months.
I recommend 'Rich Dad Poor Dad' to anyone that wants to achieve financial freedom and get out of the rat race. I also recommend Robert's podcast that you can find on Youtube, Spotify or other streaming playlists. It will change your perception about money forever!
On a final note, I think the biggest takeaway is learning about real estate. Presently, I have no interest in dabbling it, BUT this book did teach me a lot of when to buy real estate and more importantly when to sell it. I know that my end goal is to own a plot of land in ten years time, so this book really helped me generate some ideas on how to achieve this goal without going through the traditional route of using your "earned income" or "requesting a loan from a bank." Another take-away I got from this book is the benefits of the stock market. I have been dabbling in it for the last four months and have learned a lot from my newbie mistakes. The financial books that I have been streaming on Youtube and simply listening to podcasts on Spotify have helped me discern the right stocks to buy in the near future. I hope to take up Robbie's advice and enrol in some financial classes and simply network with others to better learn about the financial game. I am really loving it so far, and it is taking up a lot of my time this summer. Anyways, thank you for taking time to read this review and I recommend this book to everyone.
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A lot of my readers have described my writing as exceptionally visual, almost to the point that it feels like they are watching a scene play out before their very eyes. A lot of my success comes to practice, but it also stems from visual inspirations that help me sharpen a scenery or visual characteristics of the main characters. So without further ado, here are the top five television shows that have inspired my writings for the books published so far (and upcoming ones in the near future).
1. The Alienist
The corona-virus pandemic in the year 2020 meant that a lot more people were binge watching shows on Netflix, myself included. Although most of my time was spent watching historical and philosophical documentaries, it also meant that I could find time to watch some period dramas as well.
Although I did not make it through the first season of this show, I was still able to appreciate the visual aspects of it. A lover of films and television shows set during the nineteenth century, The Alienist, was no exception to the media that normally peaked my interest.
A long time fan of the actor Luke Evans, it was to my delight that he played a deeply sensitive and emphatic visual artist that depicted crime scenes for the local police. I was struck by the vulnerability of the character, the sheer emotion expressed by his eyes and subtle facial expressions. Luke Evans character, John Moore, became the main inspiration for me when I was writing my historical novel 'Awakening.' Visually speaking, I tried to closely align the character Elliot Summers to the one depicted in the Netflix television show The Alienist. There is also an attempt to capture the empathy and good, noble-like nature that John Moore possess in the show. Although I eventually lost interest in the The Alienist by the end of season one, it still made a major impact on my writing style and the manner of me approaching the reserved banker, Mr. Elliot Summer.
Netflix also blessed me with the crime drama, Broadchurch, a couple of years back. Always a fan of David Tennant (I blame Doctor Who) there was no hesitation to check out this show online. Let me tell you that it is well worth a watch! You will not expect the plot-twist at the end of season one. Needless to say, I managed to binge watch the entire season to my delight.
The main inspiration I took from this crime drama is the scenery. Against the back drop of the crime scene and awful litigation we get to see golden sand, the sky-blue sea and towering cliffs. When crafting 'The Tragic Tale of Teddy Woven' I took a lot of inspiration from this television show. The predominant location for this show is in Dorset, England. The idealistic scenery has persuaded me to visit the sea-side town one day with my own eyes. Ideally, Teddy Woven's home would be at the top of the cliff to overlook the changing tide and to breathe in the freshness of the air at any given moment. Such a romantic back-drop can hide the true terrors that lurk inside his home, but that is for the audience and poor Sela to figure out.
3. Peaky Blinders
Another Netflix series listed as one of my inspirations for writing is the classic television show, Peaky Blinders. Set in the 1920's, Birmingham is run by gangsters that desire to run the city with drugs, violence and sex. The leader of the gang is a Mr. Thomas Shelby, and he will stop at nothing to obtain power and wealth.
A lot of the book reviews so far have referenced this television show, citing there is a strong resemblance between the two. Personally, I don't see such resemblance in 'Awakening' but I do see it in the 'Far from Home' series. I believe you will see some ties to the television show in 'Far from Home: Book Two' when the readers are introduced to travelling Gypsies in Ireland and the powerful forces Mr. Aodhan McVeigh wields in his home country as he sinks his teeth into the drug wars and criminal violence. McVeigh goes by the nickname the "Bloody Hand" for a reason, and no one can expect the great lengths of violence and intimidation he will do to get what his heart truly desires.
Two characters from the Peaky Blinders inspired my writing for the 'Far from Home' series. The first is Mr. Thomas Shelby, a prominent leader of a gang with ruthless ambitious and need for control. The second is Mr. Aberama Gold, a traveller that wants to hold onto his traditional ways as a traveller, but also see's an advantage in aligning himself with powerful men to receive monetary gain and a better way of life. Undoubtedly, you will see some inspiration in the later adaptions of 'Far from Home' when they debut in the year 2022 and 2023.
4. Sherlock Holmes
Anyone a Sherlockian? If so, I highly recommend this classic rendition of Sherlock Holmes tales, which is starred by the loveable Jeremy Brett and David Burke. I read the books during my undergrad, and about a year later stumbled upon this television series on YouTube. It was an easy addiction, and a show I still refer to when writing mysteries.
'Far from Home: Book One' was strongly influenced by the character Sherlock Holmes and his mysterious. Although, the main character, Detective Jessie Varon, is not as clever as Sherlock Holmes, readers can still see a likeness to famous detective that resides in 221B Baker Street.
Detective Varon is an outsider, not belonging to the other English detectives that are at the top of the game. As an immigrant born into poverty and slowly making his way up the ranks, it is clear that he has to prove himself to his superiors. Detective Varon is faced with a difficult task to uncover the mystery surrounding Victoria Reeds in book one of 'Far from Home." His sidekick, Wells, adds some comedic effect as they work through this mystery together, showcasing their ardent affection for one another as they tackle the difficult task of locating the illusive 'Bloody Hand' otherwise known as Mr. McVeigh in the slums of London.
If you are a fan of a good old fashioned mystery, or a lover of Sherlock Holmes, I can assure you that you will fall in love with the 'Far from Home' book series.
5. Penny Dreadful
Are you a fan of Gothic horror? Do you love haunted castles? Eerie ghosts, vampires, or other ghoulish creatures that stalk the night? I have the perfect television show for you called "Penny Dreadful" that will wet your appetite for all things dark and disastrous.
I recently discovered this show after a dear friend's recommendation. She knew that I had a thing for Oscar Wilde's "The Picture of Dorian Gray," and kindly recommended this show that had a spin-off for this elusive character. So, not only was I exposed to electrifying charms of Dorian Gray, I also was able to witness Bram Stoker's "Dracula" come to life and Shelly's "Frankenstein."
When writing the short fantasy novella "Far from Home: Book Three" you can see a major inspiration from this television show. The third part to this series veers away from mystery and instead focuses on the orgins of Aodhan McVeigh. The readers are able to uncover the secrets of his past, and more importantly the new desire that drills away into his heart. The life of a vampire is never easy, not easy for McVeigh. As he ventures through the dark parts of London City in the early years of World War One, the audience gets to see the gradual transformation of this character as he has lived long beyond his time. A man of centuries ago, it will be difficult for him to fit into modern society, especially since the lifestyle of men and women are dramatically changing as the English wage war against the Germans. The third part to this story still retains its natural darkness, many unsuspecting victims are taken by McVeigh as he feasts on their blood, but he is also in the process of recruiting another to be just like him, and that can spell danger for mankind as a whole.
For those of you that follow me regularly on social media, especially Instagram, you are aware that I have a secret project in the works. My historical novel 'At Peace' was expected to debut at the end of the year. After some long periods of consideration, I have decided that 'At Peace' will come out in June 2022.
The main reason for this push back is that I will be returning to my former job (before Covid-19 turned my world upside down and I got laid off from my job). More importantly, I am planning to move overseas for a new position at the end of December, so that will be my primary focus for the next few months.
I do apologize to my fans for this major inconvenience. I am aware that many of you were excited for my new book, but I thought it deserved the respect it deserved by pushing back the premiere date. It is more important to me to put 100% of my effort, time and focus into this novel, rather than rushing through the process and diminishing its value to the reader.
On a happier note, I am planning to partner up with a indie artist on Instagram for the book cover. If you want a sneak peak of the kind of art that will be displayed on the front cover, please visit her Instagram page @heafjaart
Thank you for your patience and understanding. 'At Peace' will be my longest novel to date, and the most heart-wrenching romance in my opinion. You can expect some more updates on my latest novel in the coming months.
Thank you once more,
One Up On Wall Street: How to Use What You Already Know to Make Money in the Market by Peter Lynch
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
This book easily deserves to be put in my personal list of the top ten finance books of all times. Lynch's "One Up On Wall Street" breaks down investment terms and the right stocks to buy in so simple a way that anyone can understand it. From an entry level investor to a seasoned professional, nearly anyone can pick up some helpful tips on how to improve their game.
Here are a few major takeaways that I have learned from this book:
1) Don't rely on professionals. Use your brain and intuition when picking stocks.
2) Try out the businesses for yourself. For example, before placing your investment in a food chain business, why not try out the burger and fries for yourself. Take some time to really know the company and its clients.
3) Research, research, research. Do not invest money in a company that you know nothing about. Pay attention to their press conferences, learn about the CEO, the company's mission, the steps they are taking to continually improve their quarterly and annual earnings.
4) Don't sleep on your investments. Please do not buy a stock of a company and then no longer pay attention to it. Companies are organic, they grow and diminish in time, so it is important to keep an eye on them. Yes, companies will go through natural cycles, but they can also take a negative downturn- for the worst. Frequently revision of your stocks will ensure you are on high alert, ready enough to trade, sell, or potentially buy more stocks when the time is right.
5) Look at the facts. Lynch warns that investors fall into a major trap of being too optimistic or relying on their emotions when playing the game of stocks. He warns that investors should use their head, only pure logic will help you win the game.
6) Only invest money that you are ready to lose. He warns that placing your entire life-savings into a stock is risky business because you have the potential to lose it. He also encourages investors to own a house, before placing a lot of money into stocks, because he believes that a house is a person's greatest investment.
As always, Lynch encourages the reader to learn more about Wall Street by describing his experiences in an entertaining fashion. He is humble and transparent, detailing the various ways he has failed in the investment business and how we can avoid it. The biggest takeaway is to not rely on brokers or the media when it comes to choosing stocks, but instead rely on your own intuition and personal relationships with that said business that you wish to invest in.
I would recommend this book to anyone that has an interest in finance and investments. It really opened my eyes to the different types of investments, but more importantly where I can invest my cash. There are some moments when the book feels outdated, but it is still relevant to our current times. Wall Street hasn't changed much since this book was published, so there is still something to learn for the avid reader. I look forward to reading more of Peter Lynch's work in the near future. This one is certainly a five star read!
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