The Penny Pinchers Club

I had a boss that used to give us (her six immediate subordinates) a monthly newsletter to Debt Proof Living (formerly Cheapskate Living) every Christmas. Yes- the irony wasn’t lost on me. She’d pay for something we could essentially get for free on the Internet. Really a twenty dollar gift card to Starbucks would have been more greatly appreciated and probably would have served the same purpose.

My boss lived the lifestyle to the extreme. Stocked up on groceries when they were on sale. Used the internet to find the cheapest gas. Could she get at least 50% knocked off her bill by double, triple couponing it? Use everything multiple times. I worked for in the early 2000's before the big crash, when money was flowing like lava. Turns out she knew what she was talking about.

Penny Pincher’s reminded me of her. Look I’ll be straight with ya! I love me some free swag. I coupon it up with the best of them. But do I want to read about it? I don’t know.

Before I start let me tell you…I like Sarah Strohmeyer books. I like them a lot- they’re really cute, a fun couple of hours of escapism. She’s one of those authors I mentally file away under the “good reads” category – so if I’m at the library and can’t find something that catches my eye, I’ll look for her. So if you read this and don’t necessarily like it- go find a different Sarah. You will be very glad you did. She’s very good.

Penny Pinchers wasn’t bad. Awesome start…the first couple of pages will certainly hook you. But after that…a little preachy. If you are a victim of the latest economic downturn then Penny Pinchers will either really appeal to you or it will annoy the hell out of you.

Main character Kat Griffiths is a stereotypical suburban upper middle class mom, with her Lexus, Ann Taylor wardrobe, daily Starbuck’s addiction and excessive shopping habit. Her husband, college economics professor Griff is her polar opposite when it comes to money. When Kat stumbles across some incriminating e-mails, she’s convinced Griff has finally had it with her spendy habits and he’s getting ready to leave her.

She vows to get her spending until control and ultimately save her marriage, going as far as joining the Rocky River Penny Pinchers Club-a frugal-living support group filled with eccentric and interesting characters who in turn amuse the reader and present some interesting solutions. Some made perfect sense- getting rid of her Lexus (with it's huge payment) for something a little more $ friendly. Some suggestions didn't make so much a $200 bread machine to make your own bread? Ever heard of Craigslist? Geez.

Strohmeyer deals with some serious realistic scenarios in a cutesy-cutesy way. Penny Pinchers is a quick, fun read as long as you don’t take it too seriously.




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