March 04, 2013

Follow Your Money by Sylvester and Hlinka Book Review


A vital introduction to the way money flows.

In order to become a savvy consumer, it’s important to understand what happens to money once it leaves your pocket. This engaging, kid-friendly book takes a look at the route money takes as it goes to pay for everything from raw materials, salaries, and transportation to packaging, marketing, and advertising.   

Using examples that are relevant to kids, Follow Your Money explains who gets what when you buy pizza, movie tickets, CDs, clothes, and other goods. Readers may be surprised to learn that a $10 movie ticket only translates into a $.05 profit for the theater once all expenses are paid. And for those who opt for designer instead of no name jeans, the huge difference in price has almost nothing to do with material or production costs and everything to do with profit.

Other topics include an easy-to-understand summary of how banks and credit cards work, as well as answers to questions such as “Why do things go on sale?” “What’s the best way to save money when you buy a cell phone?” “Which food item is the most profitable for a restaurant: a burger, a veggie stir-fry, or a salad?”

Brightly illustrated with graphic breakdowns of all the elements involved in monetary transactions, this book helps demystify the process while helping kids make informed financial decisions.

My Thoughts
Authors Sylvester and Hlinka have written a wonderful, easy to read book to help consumers of all ages understand the business of money.  Yes, it is a business.  Follow Your Money begins with the history of money and then breaks down the finances of commonly purchased items: clothing, shoes, food, gas, etc.  There's even a chapter titled "Game Play" which explains the business of video games.  As you can imagine with three boys, this chapter was the topic of many dinner conversations.  Last weekend, the boys had friends over and they were discussing a new video game and one of the boys mentioned the cost.  My youngest went on to explain how video game companies make their money.  It was interesting seeing how well he summarized this chapter of the book.  

With so many kids marketing to our children, it's important for parents to help their children become savvy shoppers.  Of course, there will always be some "must buy" item, but I'm glad there are books out there like Follow Your Money to help educate my children to make better financial decisions and not fall prey to some of the poor financial decisions I've made over the years.  Very informative and perfect for parents and sharing with tweens and teens to help them better spend their hard earned cash.

Buy It:
To purchase your copy of Follow Your Money, visit Annick Press Store or Amazon

Disclosure:  I received a copy of this book from NetGalley for purposes of reviewing this title.  The views expressed above are mine.


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