Rich Dad Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids about Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!

Rich Dad Poor Dad: What the Rich Teach Their Kids about Money That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!

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by Robert T. Kiyosaki, Sharon L. Lechter

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Argues that a good education and secure job are not guarantees of financial success, and presents advice for accumulating wealth.  See more details below


Argues that a good education and secure job are not guarantees of financial success, and presents advice for accumulating wealth.

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The Barnes & Noble Review
The advice that dads traditionally give is so commonplace, it seems almost clichéd: Go to school and do well. Save your money. Work hard, and financial reward will follow.

What would you say upon learning that dear ol' Dad was dead wrong?

In his explosive financial manuals, Robert T. Kiyosaki suggests that perhaps you shouldn't have taken Dad's advice, encouraging a new look at an old financial mind-set. The subtitle of Rich Dad, Poor Dad says it all: "What the Rich Teach Their Kids About Money — That the Poor and Middle Class Do Not!" Contending that the wealthy have learned to make money work for them, rather than toiling for the almighty dollar, Kiyosaki reveals the secrets to success — his way.

A millionaire himself, Kiyosaki's own experience plays a part in his controversial financial guidebooks. His real father, an educated, diligent man who became superintendent of education in Hawaii, gave his son the traditional fatherly counsel about hard work and financial gain. He died broke and bitter. Kiyosaki's "second father," his friend Mike's dad, was a high school dropout who taught Kiyosaki all that he now knows to be true about money. His "rich dad" lived up to Kiyosaki's affectionate name for him, becoming one of Hawaii's wealthiest men.

Robert Kiyosaki's philosophy — including the assertion that a high income does not a wealthy person make — forms the cornerstone of his remarkable books, and his message is clear: "Take responsibility for yourfinancesor take orders all your life. You're either a master of money or a slave to it." With Kiyosaki's guidance, explode the myth that you need to earn a high income to become rich, challenge the belief that your house is an asset, and refuse to rely on the school system to teach kids about money.

These books — which exploded onto bestseller lists back in 1997 when the authors published them under their own Tech Press imprint — will help anyone who's serious about claiming control of his or her financial future. Discover what to teach your kids about money — and they will benefit in ways you did not.

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Product Details

Grand Central Publishing
Publication date:
Rich Dad Series
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.62(d)

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Chapter One

Rich Dad, Poor Dad

I had two fathers, a rich one and a poor one. One was highly educated and intelligent; he had a Ph.D. and completed four years of undergraduate work in less than two years. He then went on to Stanford University, the University of Chicago, and Northwestern University to do his advanced studies, all on full financial scholarships. The other father never finished the eighth grade.

Both men were successful in their careers, working hard all their lives. Both earned substantial incomes. Yet one struggled financially all his life. The other would become one of the richest men in Hawaii. One died leaving tens of millions of dollars to his family, charities and his church. The other left bills to be paid.

Both men were strong, charismatic and influential. Both men offered me advice, but they did not advise the same things. Both men believed strongly in education but did not recommend the same course of study.

If I had had only one dad, I would have had to accept or reject his advice. Having two dads advising me offered me the choice of contrasting points of view; one of a rich man and one of a poor man.

Instead of simply accepting or rejecting one or the other, I found myself thinking more, comparing and then choosing for myself.

The problem was, the rich man was not rich yet and the poor man not yet poor. Both were just starting out on their careers, and both were struggling with money and families. But they had very different points of view about the subject of money.

For example, one dad would say, "The love of money is the root of all evil." Theother, "The lack of money is the root of all evil."

As a young boy, having two strong fathers both influencing me was difficult. I wanted to be a good son and listen, but the two fathers did not say the same things. The contrast in their points of view, particularly where money was concerned, was so extreme that I grew curious and intrigued. I began to start thinking for long periods of time about what each was saying.

Much of my private time was spent reflecting, asking myself questions such as, "Why does he say that?" and then asking the same question of the other dad's statement. It would have been much easier to simply say, "Yeah, he's right. I agree with that." Or to simply reject the point of view by saying, "The old man doesn't know what he's talking about." Instead, having two dads whom I loved forced me to think and ultimately choose a way of thinking for myself. As a process, choosing for myself turned out to be much more valuable in the long run, rather than simply accepting or rejecting a single point of view.

One of the reasons the rich get richer, the poor get poorer, and the middle class struggles in debt is because the subject of money is taught at home, not in school. Most of us learn about money from our parents. So what can a poor parent tell their child about money? They simply say "Stay in school and study hard." The child may graduate with excellent grades but with a poor person's financial programming and mind-set. It was learned while the child was young.

Money is not taught in schools. Schools focus on scholastic and professional skills, but not on financial skills. This explains how smart bankers, doctors and accountants who earned excellent grades in school may still struggle financially all of their lives. Our staggering national debt is due in large part to highly educated politicians and government officials making financial decisions with little or no training on the subject of money.

I often look ahead to the new millennium and wonder what will happen when we have millions of people who will need financial and medical assistance. They will be dependent on their families or the government for financial support. What will happen when Medicare and Social Security run out of money? How will a nation survive if teaching children about money continues to be left to parents—most of whom will be, or already are, poor?

Because I had two influential fathers, I learned from both of them. I had to think about each dad's advice, and in doing so, I gained valuable insight into the power and effect of one's thoughts on one's life. For example, one dad had a habit of saying, "I can't afford it." The other dad forbade those words to be used. He insisted I say, "How can I afford it?" One is a statement, and the other is a question. One lets you off the hook, and the other forces you to think. My soon-to-be-rich dad would explain that by automatically saying the words "I can't afford it," your brain stops working. By asking the question "How can I afford it?" your brain is put to work. He did not mean buy everything you wanted. He was fanatical about exercising your mind, the most powerful computer in the world. "My brain gets stronger every day because I exercise it. The stronger it gets, the more money I can make." He believed that automatically saying "I can't afford it" was a sign of mental laziness.

Although both dads worked hard, I noticed that one dad had a habit of putting his brain to sleep when it came to money matters, and the other had a habit of exercising his brain. The long-term result was that one dad grew stronger financially and the other grew weaker. It is not much different from a person who goes to the gym to exercise on a regular basis versus someone who sits on the couch watching television. Proper physical exercise increases your chances for health, and proper mental exercise increases your chances for wealth. Laziness decreases both health and wealth.

My two dads had opposing attitudes in thought. One dad thought that the rich should pay more in taxes to take care of those less fortunate. The other said, "Taxes punish those who produce and reward those who don't produce."

One dad recommended, "Study hard so you can find a good company to work for." The other recommended, "Study hard so you can find a good company to buy."

One dad said, "The reason I'm not rich is because I have you kids." The other said, "The reason I must be rich is because I have you kids."

One encouraged talking about money and business at the dinner table. The other forbade the subject of money to be discussed over a meal.

One said, "When it comes to money, play it safe, don't take risks." The other said, "Learn to manage risk."

One believed, "Our home is our largest investment and our greatest asset." The other believed, "My house is a liability, and if your house is your largest investment, you're in trouble."

Both dads paid their bills on time, yet one paid his bills first while the other paid his bills last.

One dad believed in a company or the government taking care of you and your needs. He was always concerned about pay raises, retirement plans, medical benefits, sick leave, vacation days and other perks. He was impressed with two of his uncles who joined the military and earned a retirement and entitlement package for life after twenty years of active service. He loved the idea of medical benefits and PX privileges the military provided its retirees. He also loved the tenure system available through the university. The idea of job protection for life and job benefits seemed more important, at times, than the job. He would often say, "I've worked hard for the government, and I'm entitled to these benefits."

The other believed in total financial self-reliance. He spoke out against the "entitlement" mentality and how it was creating weak and financially needy people. He was emphatic about being financially competent.

One dad struggled to save a few dollars. The other simply created investments.

One dad taught me how to write an impressive resume so I could find a good job. The other taught me how to write strong business and financial plans so I could create jobs.

Being a product of two strong dads allowed me the luxury of observing the effects different thoughts have on one's life. I noticed that people really do shape their life through their thoughts.

For example, my poor dad always said, "I'll never be rich." And that prophesy became reality. My rich dad, on the other hand, always referred to himself as rich. He would say things like, "I'm a rich man, and rich people don't do this." Even when he was flat broke after a major financial setback, he continued to refer to himself as a rich man. He would cover himself by saying, "There is a difference between being poor and being broke. Broke is temporary, and poor is eternal."

My poor dad would also say, "I'm not interested in money," or "Money doesn't matter." My rich dad always said, "Money is power."

The power of our thoughts may never be measured or appreciated, but it became obvious to me as a young boy to be aware of my thoughts and how I expressed myself. I noticed that my poor dad was poor not because of the amount of money he earned, which was significant, but because of his thoughts and actions. As a young boy, having two fathers, I became acutely aware of being careful which thoughts I chose to adopt as my own. Whom should I listen to—my rich dad or my poor dad?

Although both men had tremendous respect for education and learning, they disagreed in what they thought was important to learn. One wanted me to study hard, earn a degree and get a good job to work for money. He wanted me to study to become a professional, an attorney or an accountant or to go to business school for my MBA. The other encouraged me to study to be rich, to understand how money works and to learn how to have it work for me. "I don't work for money!" were words he would repeat over and over, "Money works for me!"

At the age of 9, I decided to listen to and learn from my rich dad about money. In doing so, I chose not to listen to my poor dad, even though he was the one with all the college degrees.

A Lesson From Robert Frost

Robert Frost is my favorite poet. Although I love many of his poems, my favorite is The Road Not Taken. I use its lesson almost daily:

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood

And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads onto way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence;
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

Robert Frost [1916]

And that made all the difference.

Over the years, I have often reflected upon Robert Frost's poem. Choosing not to listen to my highly educated dad's advice and attitude about money was a painful decision, but it was a decision that shaped the rest of my life.

Once I made up my mind whom to listen to, my education about money began. My rich dad taught me over a period of 30 years, until I was age 39. He stopped once he realized that I knew and fully understood what he had been trying to drum into my often thick skull.

Money is one form of power. But what is more powerful is financial education. Money comes and goes, but if you have the education about how money works, you gain power over it and can begin building wealth. The reason positive thinking alone does not work is because most people went to school and never learned how money works, so they spend their lives working for money.

Because I was only 9 years old when I started, the lessons my rich dad taught me were simple. And when it was all said and done, there were only six main lessons, repeated over 30 years. This book is about those six lessons, put as simply as possible as my rich dad put forth those lessons to me. The lessons are not meant to be answers but guideposts. Guideposts that will assist you and your children to grow wealthier no matter what happens in a world of increasing change and uncertainty.

Lesson #1 The Rich Don't Work for Money

Lesson #2 Why Teach Financial Literacy?

Lesson #3 Mind Your Own Business

Lesson #4 The History of Taxes and the Power of Corporations

Lesson #5 The Rich Invent Money

Lesson #6 Work to Learn— Don't Work for Money

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Rich Dad Poor Dad 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 506 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Rich Dad, Poor Dad explains the differences and distinctions between how the rich class, and the poor and middle classes manage their money. The author differentiate throughout the entire book explaining how his best friends dad, the "Rich Dad" was so successful. One of the main significances that were emphasized was "working hard" was different from "working and spending smart". For example, you can be the hardest worker in the building, but, if you are not smart on managing your money, you can have nothing to show for it. The Poor Dad is considered to be more government based, relying on other people to make monetary decisions, especially when it concerns taxes. The Rich Dad in more corporation based, being more proactive and finding ways to keep more of the money earned. This book explained economics in a way that was realistic and encouraging. The fact the author explained it in a way that anyone can follow his methods and be successful. It was able to keep my interest from the beginning to the end. It gave real world examples of how to manage my money and make smart investments to build my asset column. Before reading this book I had no knowledge or interest in starting to build an assets column at my age. This book gave me an understanding on what exactly determined an asset and how to start building a portfolio that could benefit me now and in the future. It is never too early to start. The most helpful thing that I gained from this book was to look at things as; a want versus a need. I realize that I have more wants than needs. Reading this book as a teenager has pointed me in the right direction of knowing what determines an asset and what determines a liability.
Poordadrichlife More than 1 year ago
Robert Kiyosaki has lived with two dads. The poor dad, who was his biological father, went to the ivy league schools and received a doctorate degree, however, always ended up financially poor. The rich dad, was his friend's father, who only received education up to 8th grade, understood how to invest in money. He explains that it's all in the mental process. For instance, if job wages are low the common thought is--"I can't afford it" or "how can I afford it?" The poor dad would say he can't afford it, automatically shutting down his brain and accepting the state that he's in to save money. On the other hand, the rich dad tries to figure out a way to make more money and not dwell on the fact that the wages are small. This theme of differences in principals and financial methods is what continues on throughout the book. The common problem is that people in school are not taught about money. The average dad, also the poor dad, tells their children to work hard in school and get a steady job in a good company. In other words, he believes in the traditional ideas of working hard, preserving money, and not wasting it on material things, especially things he can't afford. The situation is that the poor dad was always more focused on education, rather than money, and commonly thinks "money doesn't matter". The poor dad also dwells on company insurance, security, and salary raises, instead of actually focusing on the job itself. This is what the rich dad calls the "Rat Race" in which one can never leave this cycle of being poor with this mindset. The rich dad did not spend time for education, but instead invested it on investing. The rich dad is seen as someone who learned to take risks, instead of not taking them, and by doing so, was able to have money work for him, instead of him work for money. I was shocked as to how much I was able to see these common thoughts portray in my life, and that my father fits perfectly under the category of a poor dad-- a common teacher, who loves to learn more but doesn't really like to focus on money, and constantly exclaims around the house, "we can't afford that". He also always focuses on insurance of our house, or our social security, or saving money. However, I may not live the glamorous life of having a rich father, I appreciate the rich life I live with his knowledge and determination to work hard, even if it still means to financially struggle with money. I am skeptical about not having an education, in the means to be able to become a rich dad, because I feel that without a root of knowledge then money takes over a family and have no real value. However, constantly dwelling on low wages, or in other words, to not be a pessimist, can always be a goal that families try to achieve. In the end, I found this to be book to be informative and maybe even life changing, but at the same time very unethical.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pretty good book to help get you started on a more financially intelligent future. Teaches some basic principles, but can often be vague. A lot of the book teaches the same basic rules over and over most likely to cram them into the reader's mind. I ocassionally got rather uncomfortable when he would recommend some illegitimate tactics to get ahead. Such as buying new cars and other things as "corporate expenses" and using his cat as his partner. -Ethan
MLB-CA More than 1 year ago
Purchased my third copy as a gift for a friend who didn't think about getting his money working for him when he purchased his condo and is now under water with the loan. He couldn't understand how a hard working ethical person could get in so much debt. He is pretty discouraged! When I first read RD-PD I had many ahha moments that explained how to think about money. I already had the basics of attention to interest rates, paying off debt in an order and saving. I still felt frustrated. The book guided me in a complete turnaround to co-owning and assets. I changed my employment, increased my deferred comp and increased my base pay to increase retirement. I was raised in a cash household by depression era kids who recycled and bought used. I had frugal down -but not asset awareness. My folks were land oriented. Property value increases saved them from low income. Still I didn't know how to get on top until I started studying money. RD-PD is the best as a mental gear shifter.
RibbyBD More than 1 year ago
The purpose of this book (besides to make the author money) is not to give the reader a cookie-cutter MLM plan to make money; rather it sets out to change the mindset of the reader, to help open his/her eyes to opportunities. If you are looking for stock tips or ways to refi your house, pick another book. If you are frustrated with working for somebody else but need a motivational spark, then this is your book. Parts of it do read like a commercial for his other products, but what author doesn't do this? One lesson I took from the book that I won't forget is changing my attitude from "I can't afford this" to "what can I do to afford this?".
Sromero15 More than 1 year ago
"If you work for money, you give the power to your employer. If your money works for you, you keep and control the power." This quote sums up practically everything that Kiyosaki has to say about being financially literate. Many of us are slaves to our paychecks when in fact we can easily find ways for our money to work for us (stocks, property, etc) College is not necessary in a financially literate man's life. I found this book to be very informative in the sense that it got me thinking about my own financial future. Kiyosaki gave me hope for a financially prosperous future through each of his six lessons. This book can be helpful to anyone even if they end up finding Kiyosaki to be a quack. This book has the potential to make people think about their own financial situation and whether or not they are satisfied with it. It is the very fact that this book can help answer one question, what they are doing wrong, financially, if anything. I really enjoyed the fact that Kiyosaki conveyed his information through a story rather than through an essay. I was able to relate to Rich Dad, Poor Dad more through Kiyosaki's characters. Seeing that Kiyosaki's characters were kids, they asked a lot of questions. Kiyosaki cleverly 'answered' many of the readers' possible questions through the answers that the characters got. Overall, I felt the book had a lot of helpful information about becoming financially literate. I always saw before reading this book that the only successful people out in this world are the rich, but Kiyosaki has taught me that someone can make any amount of money and be 'well off' as long as they know how to work their money. This got me thinking of why we are not taught how to balance a checkbook or learn what 'assets' and 'liabilities' are even though the majority of our lives are going to be spent earning, saving, and spending money. The information in the book is important to everyone. There is not specific age group that should only read this book. If you are able to count money then you are able to comprehend Kiyosaki's teachings.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have serious issues with Rich Dad/Poor Dad books. I have read several, including this one, and here it is: Defenders will claim that it is meant to inspire. The inspiration he offers is telling of the great amounts of money he has. He throws in a quick snippet occasionally mentioning that if you aren't rich, you have to live below your means and cut of credit cards. Since there's no elaboration there, I can only assume this is not meant for someone in debt. Who is it meant for? It's certainly not meant for someone without a plan on how to get rich. He touts real estate and owning companies. Yet he never elaborates on how you would begin this. Essentially, the only purpose this book can have is inspiration, but it left me rather depressed. In his anecdotes, he constantly bemoans his tragic fate of growing up middle-class: 'poor', he calls it. He gives no real suggestions about the steps that must be taken to get out. A note: these stories he gives have been 'fictionalized'. This is NOT nonfiction. He makes no claims that he is telling you the truth. One of the biggest flaws of his books are the number of plugs for his seminars and board games (we're not talking a measly $30 Monopoly game). He's obviously in this to make money off of the reader, not to let the reader make money off of his ideas.
12345NT More than 1 year ago
Thesis: This books main idea is to tell the story of his life about his 2 parents: the rich dad and the poor dad. He shows that rich dads teach children about money and wealth and what the middle class or poor classes' dads do not teach to their children. He shows that you don't have to go to big schools and have a great education to be successful. Make money work for you, not work for money. Summary and analysis: This book is about Robert T. Kiyosakis' life, from childhood to adulthood. He was raised with a Rich dad, who was his best friends (Mike) dad, who was a large business owner, and a poor dad, his real biological father, who was poor and highly educated. Both fathers taught Kiyosaki different views on success but because he saw that Mikes' father was successful he chose to learn how to be successful from him (rich dad). This book shows you that anything is possible if you are fearless and open-minded and also shows the 6 major lessons for success: The rick don't work for money, The importance of financial literacy, mind your own business, Taxes and Corporations, The rich invent money, The need to work to learn and not to work for money. Kiyosaki states to never to work for money through out the book and shows that the rich when opportunities come and go the rich tend to take risks, wile the poor are too concern paying bills, fearful to make a risk, and too busy seeking wealth. This book shows the difference on how the rich class vs. the poor class look at money.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
this was a good book that really stressed the importance of financial intelligence and it seems like a good stepping stone to find out more about making a living in different ways than just being employed by someone else. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I highly recomend this book to anyone who has financial problems. It explains a whole lot about investing, making a lot of money, and getting out of the rat race. Anyone at any age should read it!
seandy More than 1 year ago
this book for me told me a lot of stuff that i already knew. it has really good advice but it does not tell exactly how to do it. that is the only critique i have for this book. i liked how kiyosaki used pictograms in which helped me understand what he meant.
BgomezAM More than 1 year ago
This book is a great book to read if you are not looking for a difficult read. it is informative and interesting because the author uses his own real life examples.
kcKS More than 1 year ago
The book Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki is a wonderful novel and guide to the little tips and tricks it takes to become financially literate. This book shoes one how to look at life's bigger picture and explains about how to work to learn and then to earn; and how to find loop holes in the financial game called life. It talks about the author's life experiences and his advice. One might say the theme of this novel is the power of education but not school, the whole novel is centered on the idea of out of class room education. Page by page the author provides all his knowledge about money. I found this quite amazing how he could go from nothing to everything just form his power and understanding of money. The only part of the book one might disagree with is how you really he talks about being rich in just money, because you could also be rich in family and friends etc. Anyone interested in money and seeking a better understanding of hoe to become financially literate should read this book.
BoRaT More than 1 year ago
This book is a milestone for your lives. Once you read it and once you play the game Cashflow afterwards, nothing will be the same for you anymore. Surely everyone will benefit in a different way but the general idea of the necessity to get of the rat race is priceless; while you are reading the book you'll feel like this "Would I share this information with everyone if I'd knew it?" Yes, this book is "THAT" awesome. I recommend you to read this book while you are also reading a Trump Book. Your focus will be doubled and everything will make more sense to you. Thank you Mr. Kiyosaki for helping young idealists like me to find some answers to our questions which we couldn't be able to learn from our own parents.
Guest More than 1 year ago
In Rich Dad Poor Dad the author never ventures to tell the reader how exactly to attain wealth. Throughout the book he leads the reader through a cat and mice game 'basically dangling promises without the following through part. This book is a poor investment in ones quest to ultametly live a finanicially controlled life. The authors own personal success is the direct result of the consumers naivety. As a result he is a 'Rich Dad' through your own money and not through the system that he claims works.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The financial press investigated this guy's claims of wealth and found them false. Until he made million's on these books he had nothing. So, unless he is writing a book about writing a book, his knowledge is limited. Entertaining, but don't follow his advise. The one good point he has is to teach your kids early on about finance. Now you don't have to read the book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A truly remarkable and life changing book that helps me pave my road to financial independence each and every day.
Anonymous 7 months ago
ROBERT K. HAS been a good guy that only brings power to self, and i cant wait to read his books ive seen him on youtube.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I haven't read a lot of these self-help books, and I've only read the first chapter of this one but I couldn't continue. His anecdotes of his early money making are based on illegal activity, which he sneakily nods at, like "but I didn't know." He tells a story about being stopped from actually counterfeiting money, which he didn't know was illegal as a kid. But then he talks about all the books he got and set up a pay library. He obviously knows what he did was illegal 'cause he points to a couple of key things: he notes that the woman who gave him the books or comics cut the covers off them. That's a marker that the books have been reported as destroyed and the authors-publishers don't make any money off them. And the woman tells him he can have the books so long as he doesn't sell them. He repeats the fact that he didn't sell the books a couple times. It's obvious that he knows "renting" the books, or whatever you call his pay library, is illegal. He's saying he followed the rules he was given, so it wasn't wrong. He also never remarks that he knows it was illegal. He's either assuming people don't know, or he's pretending he still doesn't know. He could've talked about the idea, the fact that he did it, and it was illegal, but he didn't know at the time, but it's the idea of making money work for you. Instead he touts it as a mark of his business acumen. I'm all for educating people in more of the complexities of the financial world, but I can't see that predicating a life and financial advice on illegal activities and "I didn't know" is a great way to teach legal financial concepts, let alone moral guidelines.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Change how I think about money
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TheMonkeyMan More than 1 year ago
I think everyone has to read this book. It really explains how the mental thought process of making your money work hard for you instead of working hard for your money. Highly engaging and educational at the same time. I'm a finance geek so this book is a wonderful addition to my financial collection. Recommended.