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Personal Finance For Dummies - Eric Tyson Confession: I didn't read the whole book. I used it more like a car manual, flipping to different sections as needed. Still, the sections I did read were straightforward and informative. As someone who's never dug into money matters before, especially investing, this was invaluable.

My one complaint is that I didn't read this before nearly stepping in a few financial holes, but that's hardly the book's fault. More importantly, it confirmed and expanded on my suspicions in time to backpedal, so crises averted.

Definitely worth picking up, particularly if, like me, you're not well versed in the workings of finance, personal or otherwise. I strongly advise reading this or other similar materials before jumping into the unknown.