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Investing Blog Roundup: New Book Recommendation

If you’ve been following this blog for some time, you’re probably already familiar with Darrow Kirkpatrick via the weekly roundups. In case you aren’t familiar with his work, he blogs at CanIRetireYet.com, where he discusses various aspects of retirement planning, having retired at age 50 himself. (In addition to enjoying his writing style, I also enjoy the perspective he provides as somebody who retired early via “normal” means rather than by selling a business for a fortune or getting lucky with investing.)

This week, Kirkpatrick released his latest book (named after his blog) Can I Retire Yet?: How to Make the Biggest Financial Decision of the Rest of Your Life.

After reading the Kindle edition, here’s what I wrote in my review on Amazon:

This book is uncommon in that it is written from the perspective of somebody who has already retired. Naturally, most books (including but not limited to books about retirement planning) are written by people still in the midst of their careers. It is refreshing to get the first-hand perspective of somebody who has been through the process himself.

Perhaps my favorite characteristic of this book is that it’s very honest about the uncertainty involved in retirement planning. You don’t know how long you will live. You don’t know how your investments will perform. You don’t know what inflation will look like. And you don’t know how your spending will change from year to year. Unlike many other books that attempt to gloss over this degree of uncertainty, this book really spells it out for you in a no-nonsense way. Then it shows you how to go about planning in the face of such uncertainty.

I especially enjoyed Kirkpatrick’s discussion of “lifeboat strategies” — ways that you can change course somewhat after retiring in the event that things (i.e., investment returns or spending) aren’t going as you had hoped.

The “6 Crucial Questions” at the end of the book provide a concise, clear way to get started with planning. And I’m sure many people will relate to the “Should I Work One More Year” postscript.

In any event, if you are nearing retirement (or in retirement), I think you’ll find the book helpful.

You can find the book here on Amazon or read Kirkpatrick’s announcement here.

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