Book review: ‘Lessons from Malaysian Money Stories’

It’s always good to read about personal finances especially from a Malaysian perspective. The book ‘Lessons from Malaysian Money Stories’ is a fellow Malaysian blogger’s project, and a Facebook shoutout from Ringgit Oh Ringgit certainly did not hurt (no shame in admitting this).

Ordering: The ordering process is simple enough from Suraya’s personal finance blog with payment via PayPal (credit cards accepted) or bank transfer (preferred by author).

Packaging: The book arrived courier-delivered, bubble-wrapped, and with a nice thank you note as well.

Design: The cover design and well-done illustrations by Yvonne Low are simple and help a lot with illustrating the stories.

Contents: This slim book contains ten stories, each spanning six-13 pages and at most averaging eight pages.

Being short, the stories are easy to read, in simple language, and serve to share money lessons for the reader. Interestingly, the stories span from scenes of Malaysian life to fantasy to sci-fi.

Overall comment: An excellent effort for a self-published book at an affordable price that is both useful and relevant to Malaysians. Order yours now if you haven’t already.

Title: ‘Look out for Naila, world!’ by Jouhari Ali

Entrepreneurship: Entrepreneurship can be nurtured from a very young age. Teach a child to fish (or dig for worms). Seek opportunities, find your niche, and deliver awesome customer service.

Value: A child is never too young to learn the basic concepts of money. You know you are doing right as a parent when your child begins to understand the value of money. A lesson in value will carry one far into adulting.

Thriftiness: It pays to be thrifty. Stretching one’s ringgit can bring manifold returns down the road of life. All you need sometimes is thicker skin, inner strength, and some tape.

Title: In Memoriam by N T Cloever

Giving: Giving and gratitude are two sides of the same coin. And sometimes it’s both sides all at once.

Price: Everything and everyone has a price. What’s your price? What would you sell? Who would you sell…

Priceless: And then there are things that money and plastic can never buy. Family. Freedom. Faith.

Title: Necessary Expense by Sarah Anne

Love: For love or comfort. For want or need. For one’s beloved. Or the love of money. Sacrifices done in the name of love can be painful both physically and emotionally. Yet willingly done for a loved one.

Scams: Losing so much due to greed. Making expensive money mistakes when one should listen to the quiet voice within, warning you. Beware charlatans and two-legged monsters.

Lies: Debt, lies and cover-ups make for a slippery slide down a perilous road for two.

Title: My Family’s Experience with Ponzi Scheme by Jonathan Kam

Greed: If something is too good to be true, it probably isn’t. Not only is love blind, the love of money can also cause blindness. The illusion of wealth, social/charity events/sponsorship, and lucrative promises of returns are a smokescreen to financial disaster.

Debt: Getting into debt to invest with money you don’t have, is generally a big no for the average investor. You risk not only losing your capital but end up struggling to pay back debt.

Resilience: A financial setback isn’t the end of the world. A major setback is painful and takes both time and costs to set right. Yet it is possible to adjust, align, and get back on the right track with sacrifice and dedication.

Title: For the Greater Good by Suraya Zainudin

Universal Basic Income: What if all Malaysians were given a basic income regardless? How many of us would do what we do if we weren’t paid?

Change: The changing world we live in whether individuals and businesses need to adapt and change to survive and thrive.

Right: What makes something right? Might makes right? When it benefits the majority even though it may be a form of tyranny? Questions to chew on…

This article first appeared in

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