First to a Million: A Teenager’s Guide to Achieving Early Financial Independence

Bigger Pockets. Nov. 2021. 240p. pap. $14.99. ISBN 9781947200463.
Gr 9 Up–In this guide for entrepreneurial teenagers, Sheeks introduces the FIRE method: Financial Independence/Retire Early, the concept that a few strategic financial moves early in life can help youth avoid decades spent working. Sheeks refutes the idea of the American Dream and asserts that today’s youth can take on side hustles and reject debt in order to build wealth early on. Sheeks presents proven skills from his own experience; online communities; and featured “Freaks,” a title given to anyone following this unconventional path to financial independence. Money is not the sole focus of the book, and the “million” referenced in the title does not necessarily allude a monetary goal, but instead overall satisfaction. Sheeks’s career as a high school business teacher lends to his ability to speak to this youth audience. Some ideas presented are a little lofty, and while not all will be able to purchase a rental property in their 20s, the author provides enough alternate ideas that gamify wealth building in a way that will appeal to youth.
VERDICT Financially minded youth will find motivation and plenty of ideas for pursuing a “freakish” path towards financial independence and contentment.

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