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The warm weather is upon us and so begins the season of summer reading. Whether you are looking for new business management thoughts, investment insight or mental stimulus (or mental escape), the list below represents the most recent impactful books that warrant a read.

The Millionaire Next Door: The Surprising Secrets of America’s Wealthy
by Thomas J. Stanley P.H.D.

While not exactly a new book, it remains a compelling guide for anyone who wants to adopt the same habits of millionaires next door – the people who live below their means while accumulating wealth. At Fragasso Financial Advisors, we have many millionaires that, as a result of hard work and diligent savings, have amassed considerable nest eggs through discipline and consistency. Traits we can all benefit from.

Dead Companies Walking: How a Hedge Fund Manager Finds Opportunities in Unexpected Places
by Scott Fearon and Jesse Powell

Scott Fearon spends his time seeking companies whose business model is flawed, nearing bankruptcy, or failed to see major shifts in their industry. Scott seeks these flawed companies as part of his hedge fund that bets against these troubled businesses through “shorting” their stocks. (A short sale is the sale of an asset that the seller has borrowed in order to profit from a subsequent fall in the price of the asset). While Scott has profited handsomely from these troubled companies, arguably though, the most important aspects of Scott’s book are the plain-speaking insight he shares into how mature businesses or young tech firms doom themselves by making simple mistakes. This is an insightful and easy read.

Meet You in Hell: Andrew Carnegie, Henry Clay Frick and the Bitter Partnership That Transformed
by Les Standiford

This story shares a perception of the industrial age of a nation, and specifically, two of the most influential men who transformed it. These two men, Andrew Carnegie and Henry Clay Frick, were driving the efficiencies needed to gain stronger positions, scale and efficiencies in a time of America’s rise in the global economy. But the book also reveals many ruthless characteristics of the time and of Frick and Carnegie; including the deadly Homestead strike and plenty of backroom business deals wrought with underhandedness. While each had a special business acumen for the industrial age, they also had a complicated relationship that provides a unique backdrop to their storied history.

Why We Sleep: Unlocking the Power of Sleep and Dreams
by Matthew Walker, PhD.

While on the surface, the title suggests a simple research book on what dreams mean to us. In fact, it is much more than that. Matthew Walker takes us further into the need for sleep and how today’s modern society (think smartphones) is disrupting this critical need. Anything less than eight hours a day of sleep may be damaging to your long-term health. A book on sleep seems perfect for those summer vacations.

The Power of Moments: Why Certain Experiences Have Extraordinary Impact
by Chip and Dan Heath

Chip and Dan Heath offer incredible insight into the mysteries of “experience”. Why do we remember such moments more than others? Why do we remember the best or worst moments in an experience but forget much of the rest? Most importantly, how do we create the most meaningful or memorable experiences that impact us and those around us. The Power of Moments creates a foundation for many of the needed skills lacking in today’s digital age.

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