Wednesday, January 7, 2015

‘Prosperity Every Day’ (Book Review)

The path toward financial success or financial freedom can often seem daunting. Sometimes you just need to start your morning with some encouraging words. Prosperity Every Day: A Daily Companion on Your Journey to Greater Wealth and Happiness (Tarcher/Penguin, 2015) is here to help. This devotional book gives short inspiring passages – most only a few sentences long – by artist Julia Cameron and musician Emma Lively, reflecting on the spiritual aspects of prosperity and motivating the reader to pursue a more fulfilling life.

To give you a taste, here is the entry for December 1:
Money madness takes many forms. Financial anorexia is one of them. We refuse to deal with money, so we underearn and underspend. We get “high” on our lack of money.
While this is not normally the kind of book I’d pick up, I found it parts of it inspiring and motivating, during a time of a lot of job stress and financial worry. It particularly spoke to me on the subject of procrastination, something I’ve had to struggle with for a good three decades. The authors also have a lot to say about debt, money mismanagement, dependency, and issues of pride. Lacking practical advice, the book is not an instruction manual about how to get out of debt or become rich. Rather, it encourages the reader towards those goals.

While the book isn’t “religious” per se, it is “spiritual” and freely references God, the Creator, and the Spirit. This sort of bothered me because I was constantly wondering what the author meant, but the vagueness might appeal to a large number of readers coming from many different backgrounds. Something else that I didn’t like was the amount of repetition. Because I was reading a whole year’s worth of entries (including a leap year one) in less than two months, I found myself asking, “Didn’t I just read this?” However, for someone not reviewing it but going at a normal-once a day, this might not be an issue.

I’d like to make one last comment, and it’s not related to the content. It has to do with the timing of the release (January 2, 2015). This book – like a calendar – is supposed to be bought in December, so that it can be utilized and appreciated all year long. It would’ve made a great Christmas gift. Now anyone who buys it will have to start a few pages in or wait until a new year begins again. That shows very poor marketing, and I’m puzzled as to why neither the publishing staff nor the authors noticed. It would be unfortunate for Prosperity Every Day to never have a real chance because everyone’s already gotten their daily devotionals for 2015.

Disclaimer: I received an advanced copy (uncorrected proof) of this book as a First Reads giveaway winner on There was no obligation to write a review.