With the reimaging of The Cyber Union, I am including book reviews and regular blogs about things going on in my life. These articles will not solely focus on technical things, but instead, they will encompass a range of topics that are part of my journey to become better at cybersecurity, finding happiness, traveling, and reaching financial freedom. You know cool stuff like that.
Speaking of books, this blog will be a review on a book I recently bought that came highly recommended in the F.I.R.E circles, also known as Financial Independence Retire Early. One of my favorite bloggers, the infamous Mr.MoneyMustache, even included it in his reading list. The book is called Early Retirement Extreme by Jacob Lund Fisker. I will post a link to the book at the bottom of the blog with the “official” description for easy reference.
The author, Jacob Lund Fisker, is a Danish writer with a Ph.D. in astrophysicist and now lives in the U.S.. According to his Wikipedia entry, he earned his path to financial independence in five years (2009) by saving about 80% of his income while working as a post-doctoral researcher. He created a blog sometime after that of the same name, Early Retirement Extreme, and followed up with this book. One of the insane things about this guy is that he lives off of $7,000 a year. That is mind-blowing. FYI, I still have no idea how he managed this even after reading the book.
Going into this book, I had high expectations. Pretty much everyone recommended this book, and it seems to be on their list of must-reads. It must be good.
Wellllllll, I will have to say that I am not in that boat. I did not really enjoy the book. In fact, I ended up skimming a majority of the content.
It was indeed very philosophical and had quite a few equations, but for me, it did not really pack a punch. I think I was looking for some more tips on ways to save money, but instead, it was geared toward getting people in the mindset to save. I am already full speed ahead in that area, so I didn’t really want to spend time reading that type of content.
Now I don’t want to scare you away from other F.I.R.E books. I have read others that resonated well with me. I really think it was just Fisker’s writing style. After reading about 20 pages, I ended up having to skim through the material, looking for information that was appropriate for me. It took until about the 50% mark until I found some good stuff and then it was sparring. I continued the skimming approach until hitting 100% completion on my kindle.
So, did I read the book? I tried really really hard. But it just wasn’t jiving for me. I can’t really say I would recommend this to anyone unless they just wanna give it a shot. Take a look at the book preview on Amazon and see if it is a writing style that works for you.
The content that I found useful, such as finding your retirement number, can be found from other resources that are a little more approachable. By the way, this should be 25 times your annual expenses.
I have started a new book, Your Money Or Your Life, that was also highly recommended. Hopefully, this one will be something I can recommend. Spoiler alert, it is starting out great!
Let me know if you are liking the new content and if you are on your journey to financial independence as well.
“A carefully-crafted combination of smart financial choices, simple living, and increased self-sufficiency brought me financial independence at 30 and allowed me to retire from my profession at 33. Early Retirement Extreme shows how I did it and how anyone can formulate their own plan for financial independence. The book provides the principles and framework for a systems theoretical strategy for attaining that independence in 5-10 years. It teaches how a shift in focus from consuming to producing can help people out of the consumer trap, and offers a path to achieving the freedom necessary to pursue interests other than working for a living. The principles in Early Retirement Extreme show how to break the financial chains that hold people back from doing what they truly want to do. The framework and principles revealed in the book has been used by many people over the last few years to accomplish a variety of goals. It provides people a means to achieve almost any goal, whether it’s debt-free living, extended travel, a sabbatical, a career change, time off to raise a child, a traditional retirement, or simply a desire for a more resilient and self-sufficient lifestyle. The book was initially written for people in their 20s and 30s, but its ideas aren’t limited to early retirees. Middle-aged people in the grips of consumerism can use the principles to take back control of their lives. People closer to retirement age who don’t feel adequately prepared can use it to set themselves up for a comfortable retirement in a relatively short period of time. Anyone worried about their financial future can use the principles in Early Retirement Extreme to make their future more secure.”