Finance Books I Own (Or Want) #illumedati 1

In keeping with the Holiday Gift Shopping Theme, this will be a list of Finance Books I Own (Or Want).

Here are some great book ideas for anyone who wants to learn about finance, investing, and retirement.


Stock photo from: Pexels

***All Listed Prices are as of 11-18-2016 and may change.

Additionally, you may be able to find some of these books used for cheap at your local bookstore if you keep an eye out for them.

Books I Recommend (and Own)

The White Coat Investor – by James M. Dahle – ($18.71)

This book gets special mention because it focuses primarily on those with extended education and training, like physicians. Hence the name “White Coat Investor”. I’ve been reading his website since I was a 2nd year radiology resident (R2) back in 2010. I’ve watched his site grow and become very successful through a lot of hard work on his part.

This book is the one you want to buy for the medical student, pharmacy student, dental student, optometry student, etc. in the family for the Holidays. I gave my little brother, a current pharmacy student, my copy. (You’re only borrowing it Alan, I want it back. jk)

Overall, I would consider it to be a primer for the rest of these books. In fact, before you read any of these books, I would recommend you at least read my Talking the Talk post, and preferably most of the posts in my Finance Fridays Roadmap.


Common Sense Investing – by Rick Van Ness – ($10.95)

I’ve listed this book first because it was the first investing book I ever bought/read. The main reason for that is because it’s only 112 pages long, with lots of helpful little graphs, in a reasonable font size. Honestly, you could just pour some coffee and read this whole book in an hour or two. Then you should probably read it again later.

For me, this book told me: “HEY DUMMY, WHAT ARE YOU DOING?” and shaped how I approached investing and retirement. For the price of two Big Mac combos this is a great deal that will save you thousands of dollars (or even hundreds of thousands) over your lifetime if you read it early enough.



The Only Investment Guide You’ll Ever Need – by Andrew Tobias – ($10.83)

Left: 2016 Edition  /  Right: 2011 Edition

Ok, just for full disclosure, I don’t own the 2016 edition of Tobias’s book. I actually own the 2011 version which is out of print, but you can buy used if you want. However, I didn’t even know a new version came out until I started writing this post, and now this new book is on my wishlist.

The title “The Only Investment Guide You’ll Ever Need” may seem a little sensationalized, but he’s really not wrong. He touches upon all the basics and even throws in a little more advanced stuff for those interested in. If you only read this book, you’ll be much better off than any of your peers/colleagues.

The only problem is this book is pretty dense, the 2011 version was 336 pages in small print and it looks the 2016 edition is 320 pages. For this reason, this is not the first book I recommend you start reading. It can be a little daunting to open a book up with small print, no pictures, and a bunch of words you don’t know. For that reason, I recommended Common Sense Investing first (above).

However, make no mistake, if you read this book and understand it, it really is all you’ll ever need to know. Of course there are tons of things that this book doesn’t cover, but basically Tobias doesn’t (and I don’t) think you need to know them, unless of course, you are interested.


The Coffeehouse Investor – by Bill Schultheis – ($14.94)

Once again, this is the new version of the book I own which is:

The New Coffeehouse Investor – by Bill Schultheis – Used

I’ve separated them here because their titles are slightly the different. The “New” Coffeehouse Investor is actually the older version (2009).

Either way, this is another great book. It helps solidify what Common Sense Investing and The Only Investment Guide You’ll Ever Need have stated.

I think his “Coffeehouse Portfolio” is interesting, since I even wrote a post about it. Although I don’t use REITs myself, I understand why it may interest some people, which I wrote about here. Overall, this book adds a few other things to consider when planning your portfolio while keeping similar ideals to the other books.

This book is not “essential” reading, but more for those who want to learn more.

Books I Think Are Good And Want To Buy

The Little Book of Common Sense Investing – by John C. Bogle – ($13.79)

I don’t own this book, but it’s on my list of things to buy. Bogle wrote this book. The Bogle from Bogleheads, the founder of Vanguard. This book was written in 2007 and has no updates probably because it doesn’t need to be updated. Honestly, I probably should have read this book before Common Sense Investing… but well… Common Sense Investing was smaller and I’m [[[LAZY]]].

Buy this book, it’s a steal at $13.79, and it’s a bargain at any price.


The Bogleheads’ Guide to Investing – by Taylor Larimore – ($14.84)

Taylor Larimore is kind of a legend in terms of Bogleheads. All you need to know is that: Jack Bogle calls Taylor “King of the Bogleheads.”

Obviously, I’m a big fan since all of my investment portfolios are just approximations of his Three Fund Portfolio, which I talk about here in Portfolio Types. I’m sure whatever is in this book will echo much of what John Bogle talks about, with Taylor’s commentary thrown in. Another book on my list to buy, and also a bargain at any price.


The Intelligent Investor – by Benjamin Graham – ($12.86)

To be honest, I had not heard of this book before. But Amazon suggested that I buy it with John Bogle’s book so I looked into it some more. Apparently Warren Buffet was a collaborator on this book, which has been around since 2006. It’s also the #1 Book in Finance, Economics, and Investment & Securities on Amazon, so I guess people like it.

It gets strong recommendations too:

“By far the best book on investing ever written.” (Warren Buffett)

“If you read just one book on investing during your lifetime, make it this one” (Fortune)

“The wider Mr. Graham’s gospel spreads, the more fairly the market will deal with its public.” (Barron’s)

Another book to add to my wishlist. However, this book is not for the faint of heart. It’s 640 pages!


A Random Walk down Wall Street – by Burton G. Malkiel – ($13.56)

Remember in my post President Elect Trump and the Stock Market where I mention “Blindfolded Monkeys Throwing Darts“? That’s from this guy.

“Burton G. Malkiel is the Chemical Bank Chairman’s Professor of Economics Emeritus at Princeton University. He is a former member of the Council of Economic Advisers, dean of the Yale School of Management, and has served on the boards of several major corporations, including Vanguard and Prudential Financial. He is the chief investment officer of Wealthfront.”

For those who don’t know Wealthfront is a Roboadvisor that uses index funds. I haven’t specifically talked about Roboadvisors, and for the most part I’m kind of against them. However, if you had to choose between going to a traditional AUM Financial Advisor and a Roboadvisor (like Wealthfront), then I would opt for Wealthfront (or its competitor Betterment). Wealthfront and Betterment both favor passive management (for a fee), which I would normally do anyways. However, some new Roboadvisors are actively managed which I would recommend against. Of course, overall, I would recommend you do it yourself… that’s why you’re here aren’t you?

Back to the book. While I can’t say I will definitely agree with everything this book has to say, I think it’s definitely worth reading. However, it’s also 496 pages, so not for the faint of heart.


A good book on finance, investing, and retirement is worth it at any price.

I list some of them here and they make great gifts for the holidays.

Someday I hope to write a book too, but that is a long ways off.


Do you have any book recommendations? I’d love to hear them.

As always, Questions, Comments and Suggestions are welcome.

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