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Rich Dad's Escape From the Rat Race
How To Become a Rich Kid By Following Rich
Dad's Advice

By Robert T. Kiyosaki and Sharon L. Lechter, Rantz Hoseley (illustrator)

     If you've ever glanced at the New York Times Bestseller list, then you've probably seen Robert T. Kiyosaki and Sharon L. Lechter's popular "Rich Dad, Poor Dad" floating in the top ten. Having conquered the adult market, the authors have switched their focus to the world of children's book publishing. They've taken their bestseller and repackaged it as a graphic novel for children. "Escape From the Rat Race" strives to tell kids how they can get rich on their own. It's an appealing topic for many money-minded youngsters. Unfortunately, the presentation is lacking.

     In this tale, Tim the Turtle and Red the Mouse discuss how exactly someone becomes rich. Tim often finds himself just barely scraping by, never having enough money for anything he wants. But his notion that getting a job would curtail all his cash woes is quickly corrected by the money savvy Red. To help Tim better understand how best to get moolah and keep it, Red tells the story of Robert Kiyosaki, and the lessons he learned as a boy from his best friend's father. Through the story of Robert, kids learn that making money is just as much about spending it wisely as it is about being inventive and thinking up new ways to cash in. Practical information about things like assets and liabilities are explained on a level that kids understand.

     The authors would've benefited if they had chosen to package "Escape" as a straight out book and not a graphic novel. The portions of "Escape" that deal directly with Robert's youth are well-drawn and colored. The rest of the story, focusing on Tim and Red, makes all the mistakes that a comic trying to be "hip" can make. It relies on outdated kid slang (ex: "You are so going down!" "Not even!"), dresses its characters in muscle shirts and low-rise jeans, and generally talks down to its audience. Kids interested in making money will be drawn to the more informative parts of the book, but be turned off by its sloppy packaging. A good idea that would have benefited from a more thoughtful execution.

The Book

Little, Brown / TimeWarner
January 1, 2005
Graphic novel
Kid's Non-Fiction / How-to [Child (9-12)]
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The Reviewer

Elizabeth Bird
Reviewed 2005
© 2005