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AUTHOR: Gabe Dunn
PUBLISHER: Atria Books
DATE: 2019
PAGES: 304

Bad With Money: The Imperfect Art of Getting Your Financial Sh*t Together

by Gabe Dunn

In the first episode of “Bad With Money” podcast, Gabe Dunn asked random people at a coffee shop two questions: First, what’s your favorite sex position? Everyone was game to answer, even the barista. No holds barred. Then, they asked them how much money was in their bank accounts. Deathly silence. People were aghast. “That’s a very personal question!” they cried. And therein lies the problem.

Gabe argues that our inability to speak honestly about money is our #1 barrier to understanding it, nurturing a stigma that leads to our shame, embarrassment, and anxiety, which in turn prevents us from taking ownership over this important part of our lives. They want you to know that there are real reasons to feel helpless when it comes to managing your money, and that the patronizing know-it-alls on TV who blow air horns in your face and charge you up the wazoo for their self-help seminars do not have the answers.

But despair not, there is a light at the end of this dark, moneyless tunnel. Through their own journey toward “financial literacy,” Gabe uncovers the real reasons that we feel so disempowered when it comes to finance—deeply rooted habits we inherited from our families, systemic imbalances, and intentionally-complicated terminology that makes it impossible for regular people to feel competent. Bad With Money isn’t going to tell you how to get rich or erase your debt, nor will it offer up a litany of humiliating confessions about horrible financial decisions that Gabe has made (okay, maybe some): it is an invitation from a friend who is just as clueless as you are. Equal parts memoir and journalistic investigation, Gabe covers topics like the financial dynamics of dating, the costs of mental health, and how to maintain your self-respect as a freelancer. In addition to debunking the “entitled millennial” stereotype, Gabe reveals essential truths like how “401K” is not the name of a sci-fi movie, why it feels like your bank teller is speaking a foreign language, and how to decide whether to take an unpaid internship.

Weaving their own stories with the perspectives of various researchers, artists, students, their parents, a financial psychologist, their exes, and more, they reveal the ways that money makes us feel confused, hopeless, and terrified, and what it might look like to start taking control of our financial futures.


Author Gabe Dunn (he/they) identifies as bisexual / queer.


[coming soon]



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