Insurance Book Notes

In the Book Notes section, Consumer Action highlights some of the best books on insurance. The Editor welcomes your feedback and suggestions for other works we should feature. Click here to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


Monopolized Cover Art

From the cars we drive to what toothpaste we use, Monopolized: Life in the Age of Corporate Power tells how a tiny group of corporations have come to dominate every aspect of our lives. Over the last 40 years our choices have narrowed, our opportunities have shrunk and our lives… More About: Monopolized

Terms of Disservice

Terms of Disservice Cover Art

Hardly a day goes by without new headlines about the dark side of digital technology. Many of those headlines concern the role of social media companies in distributing false and misleading information that inflames social and political divides and even helps sway elections. Facebook, Google, and Twitter, once seen as… More About: Terms of Disservice

Pharma: Greed, Lies, and the Poisoning of America

Pharma: Greed, Lies, and the Poisoning of America Cover Art

Pharmaceutical breakthroughs such as anti­biotics and vaccines rank among some of the greatest advancements in human history. Yet exorbitant prices for life-saving drugs, safety recalls affecting tens of millions of Americans, and soaring rates of addiction and overdose on pre­scription opioids have caused many to revile the industry. Pharma: Greed,… More About: Pharma: Greed, Lies, and the Poisoning of America

Land of the Fee

Land of the Fee Cover Art

In "Land of the Fee: Hidden Costs and the Decline of the American Middle Class", Devin Fergus offers a compelling explanation for the mounting problem of wealth inequality: the explosion of fees accompanying virtually every transaction that people make.

These perfectly legal fees are buried deep within… More About: Land of the Fee

The Truth about Social Security

The Truth about Social Security Cover Art

In, "The Truth about Social Security: The Founders' Words Refute Revisionist History, Zombie Lies, and Common Misunderstandings", Nancy Altman uses Social Security founders' own words to debunk myths and reveal the truth about the most popular and successful government program in our nation's history. According to Kirkus Reviews, "Altman's approach… More About: The Truth about Social Security

Squeezed: Why Our Families Can't Afford America

Squeezed: Why Our Families Can't Afford America Cover Art

Alissa Quart, executive editor of the Economic Hardship Reporting Project, examines the lives of many middle-class Americans who can now barely afford to raise children.

Through firsthand storytelling, Quart explores how our country has failed its families. Her subjects—from professors to lawyers to caregivers to nurses—have been wrung out by… More About: Squeezed: Why Our Families Can't Afford America

How to Be the World's Smartest Traveler

How to Be the World's Smartest Traveler Cover Art

One of our favorite consumer advocates, travel expert Christopher Elliott shares the smartest ways to travel in this tip-packed guide from National Geographic. Drawing on more than 20 years of experience as a consumer travel advocate, Elliott gives you the inside scoop on how to navigate the landmines of travel, with… More About: How to Be the World's Smartest Traveler

Weapons of Math Destruction

Weapons of Math Destruction Cover Art

In Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy, a former Wall Street quant sounds an alarm on the mathematical models that pervade modern life. This is about the "dark side" of Big Data.

This is the age of the algorithm. Increasingly, the decisions that… More About: Weapons of Math Destruction

The Black Box Society

The Black Box Society Cover Art

Every day, corporations are connecting the dots about our personal behavior―silently scrutinizing clues left behind by our work habits and Internet use. The data compiled and portraits created are incredibly detailed, to the point of being invasive. But who connects the dots about what firms are doing with this… More About: The Black Box Society

Navigating Life's Transitions

Navigating Life's Transitions Cover Art

To be prosperous, one needs a deep understanding of who and what you are and what you want out of life. Getting there can be hard work but this book makes the chore easier. With prompts on how to reach financial decisions and plan for short- and long-term goals,… More About: Navigating Life's Transitions

Worth It ... Not Worth It?

Worth It ... Not Worth It? Cover Art

Worth It ... Not Worth It? Simple & Profitable Answers to Life’s Tough Financial Questions aims to demystify complex, real-world dilemmas and break down the answers into simple, Do This/Not That solutions. Organized around six basic topics-Getting Started, Shelter, Automotive, Investing, Family Matters, and Retirement-this handy book is the Swiss… More About: Worth It ... Not Worth It?

The Single Woman’s Guide to Retirement

The Single Woman’s Guide to Retirement Cover Art

If you’re one of the 25 million single women over the age of 45 living in the United States today, AARP’s The Single Woman’s Guide to Retirement addresses many pertinent issues about feathering your nest. In fact, you don't have to be "mature" or single to find this book… More About: The Single Woman’s Guide to Retirement

Health Care Reform: What It Is, Why It's Necessary, How It Works

Health Care Reform: What It Is, Why It's Necessary, How It Works Cover Art

From the moment President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act into law in 2010, a steady and mounting avalanche of misinformation about the law has left a growing majority of Americans confused about what it is, why it’s necessary, and how it works. With cartoon illustrations by Nathan Schreiber,… More About: Health Care Reform: What It Is, Why It's Necessary, How It Works

Living Large in Lean Times

Living Large in Lean Times Cover Art

"Living Large in Lean Times" is consumer advocate Clark Howard's comprehensive guide to saving money, covering cell phones to student loans, coupon websites to mortgages, investing to electric bills and more. Howard, Atlanta-based host of a talk radio and TV show and founder of the website, has lots… More About: Living Large in Lean Times


Scammed Cover ArtOnce upon a time store prices were simple and fair, businesses stood behind their products with guarantees free of fine print and loopholes, and companies genuinely seemed to care about their valued customers—but those days are long gone. In his new exposé, consumer advocate Christopher Elliot details the broken relationship… More About: Scammed

Your Money: The Missing Manual

Your Money: The Missing Manual Cover Art

J.D. Roth is the creator of the popular personal-finance advice blog that opines on personal finance topics far and wide. The topics covered include advice on making sensible decisions on saving, spending, and investing, the best ways to set and achieve financial goals, setting up a realistic budget… More About: Your Money: The Missing Manual

The Monster

The Monster Cover Art

The Monster: How a Gang of Predatory Lenders and Wall Street Bankers Fleeced America—and Spawned a Global Crisis tells the story of the rise and fall of subprime lending by chronicling the rise and fall of two corporate empires: Ameriquest and Lehman Brothers. It is a true-crime exposé of… More About: The Monster

Avoiding the CON in Construction

Avoiding the CON in Construction Cover Art

Renovating a home is an expensive undertaking even when things go right. When things go wrong, unexpected costs and delays can be financially devastating. This book can help you make informed contracting decisions.

Kia Ricchi, a Florida-based contractor, says there are steps homeowners can take to ensure a… More About: Avoiding the CON in Construction

Get a Financial Life

Get a Financial Life Cover Art

Get a Financial Life is a real-world guide for "millennials" that teaches young people tricks for becoming the masters of their financial universes.

Get a Financial Life focuses on what you need to know when you're just starting to pay serious attention to money matters. Whether you earn $20,000 or… More About: Get a Financial Life

Prescription for Real Health Care Reform

Prescription for Real Health Care Reform Cover Art

Conversations on how to reform healthcare are long-standing and varied. But healthcare costs have soared, health insurance companies get richer and even those who pay dearly for health insurance frequently find that their policies don’t adequately cover them when they need their coverage most.

Howard Dean—the physician and… More About: Prescription for Real Health Care Reform

Stopping Identity Theft

Stopping Identity Theft Cover Art

This book outlines 10 steps you can take to protect yourself or your family from ID theft and medical identity theft, the fastest growing crime in America.

By reading this book, you will learn what to do now to safeguard your bank accounts, online presence, credit record and… More About: Stopping Identity Theft

You Can’t Cheat an Honest Man

You Can’t Cheat an Honest Man Cover Art

Since the Bernard Madoff "Ponzi scheme" scandal broke, shocking investors and the Wall Street community, this insider's guide to investment rip-offs, scams and con artists has been in demand. The book, published in the late '90s, is designed to educate consumers and make them aware of how scams work.

… More About: You Can’t Cheat an Honest Man


Ponzi Cover Art

Who was Ponzi, the man whose name is synonymous with the classic “rob-Peter-to-pay-Paul” scam where money from new investors goes to reward earlier ones? (It's the kind of scheme that Bernard Madoff recently used to rake in $50 billion from gullible folks all over the world.) In December 1919,… More About: Ponzi


Buyology Cover ArtHow much do we know about why we buy? What truly influences our decisions in today’s message-cluttered world? An eye-grabbing advertisement, a catchy slogan, an infectious jingle? Or do our buying decisions take place below the surface, so deep within our subconscious minds, we’re barely aware of them? In Buyology,… More About: Buyology

The New Deal

The New Deal Cover Art

2008 marks the 75th anniversary of the New Deal, the series of programs initiated by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt to help Americans recover during the Great Depression (1933-43). Programs such as the Civilian Conservation Corps, the Civil Works Administration, and the Works Progress Administration gave hope, support, and encouragement… More About: The New Deal

Stop Debt Collectors

Stop Debt Collectors Cover Art

Record numbers of people are falling behind on their financial obligations and their debts are being sent to collections. If you're one of them, you know that being contacted by debt collectors can be stressful, especially if they are harassing you, threatening you, and/or using abusive language.

The… More About: Stop Debt Collectors

Wall Street Versus America

Wall Street Versus America Cover Art

Gary Weiss, a business reporter, looks of what really happens in every corner of the financial system: from Internet tip sites and boiler rooms, to fee-happy mutual funds and hedge funds, to the bluest of blue-chip securities firms. With anecdotes and character studies, Wall Street Versus America tells how… More About: Wall Street Versus America

Investing 101

Investing 101 Cover Art

People wanting basic advice about stocks, bonds, mutual funds, retirement planning, and tax strategies may find that picking a good book seems as daunting as deciding what to do with their savings and investments. Investing 101: Updated and Expanded can help you get on a path that you can… More About: Investing 101

The Insurance Maze

The Insurance Maze Cover Art

Without proper insurance - health, auto, homeowners, life, disability, or long-term care - an unexpected event can quickly derail your financial plans and put your life savings at risk. Insurance is an essential part of financial planning, but many people are paying hundreds - sometimes thousands - of dollars… More About: The Insurance Maze

Home Rich

Home Rich Cover Art

Your home is the single most valuable thing you can own, yet making it pay can intimidate and confuse even the savviest investor. Finance expert Gerri Willis leads you step-by-step through the entire experience of buying, maintaining, and selling a home, and shows you how to come out ahead–maybe… More About: Home Rich

¿Se Habla Dinero?

¿Se Habla Dinero? Cover Art

¿Se Habla Dinero? The Everyday Guide to Financial Success is a bilingual guide to the basics of financial success. (Scroll down for a Spanish version of this book description.)

Getting ahead financially in the United States is a difficult task, and it is even more daunting for someone… More About: ¿Se Habla Dinero?

The New Health Insurance Solution

The New Health Insurance Solution Cover Art

If you don't have a traditional employer health plan you might be looking for good, affordable health insurance. The New Health Insurance Solution includes ways to cut your health insurance costs in half if:


Sick Cover Art

According to the new book "Sick" by Jonathan Cohn, America's health care system is unraveling. Every day, millions of hard-working people struggle to find affordable medical treatment for themselves and their families and are unable to pay for prescription drugs and regular check-ups, let alone for hospital visits. Some… More About: Sick

Credit Scores & Credit Reports

Credit Scores & Credit Reports Cover Art

The U.S. credit reporting system keeps detailed financial histories on more than 200 million Americans. Evan Hendricks' Credit Scores & Credit Reports is a well-informed, informative, and well-written guide to a subject of great and growing importance to consumers. Hendricks, a foremost privacy expert, examines in detail the credit… More About: Credit Scores & Credit Reports


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