Money, Money, Money! Finance Resources for Youth

While money is a concern in all cultures, recent economic crises have made money an especially hot topic in American discourse. The S-Collection has plenty of books about money: how people earn it, how people spend it, and how it affects people’s lives. This post includes a short list of nonfiction books about money and personal finance, novels for older readers about riches or the lack thereof, and a few websites with financial management resources for kids and teens.

When looking for additional nonfiction children’s books about money in the catalog, try using “juvenile literature” with terms like “money,” “finance, personal,” and specific terms like “credit cards,” “debit cards,” or “banks.” To find additional fiction books about money for children, combine “juvenile fiction” with terms like “poverty,” “poor,” “wealth,” “social classes,” “homeless,” or “business enterprises.”


Adler, David A. Money Madness. 2009.
What’s all this madness about money? Long ago, people traded rocks or sheep for the items they wanted, but rocks were heavy and sheep ran away. This beginning guide to economics will have readers thinking about the purpose, and not just the value, of money. Age 5+
[Center for Children’s Books S. 332.4 Ad593m]

Checkerboard How-To Library. Cool Kid Jobs [Series] 2011.
Kids want to make money! This fun and creative series introduces young readers to the idea of working in a format that is easy to read and use. Books in the series provide entrepreneurial suggestions for kids who like childcare, yard work, entertaining, home services, pets, and salesmanship. Age 8+
[Education S Collection]

Hall, Margaret. Earning, Saving, Spending [Series] 2008.
This nonfiction series includes books on banks, money, checks, and credit cards that explain how financial institutions work and how people use them. Age 7+
[Education S Collection]

Loewen, Nancy. Cash, Credit Cards, or Checks: A Book about Payment Methods. 2005.
It’s time for school shopping. How do you pay for all of those supplies? Come along to the stores with Kyle and Amy to learn more about different payment methods. Age 6+
[Education S Collection S. 332.4 L825c]

Rissman, Rebecca. Money Around the World [Series] 2008.
With vivid photographs and simple text, books in this series introduce children to the concepts of currency, exchange, and global diversity. Topics include currency, spending, saving, and earning. Age 4+
[Education S Collection]

Roderick, Stacy and Ellen Warwick. Centsibility: The Planet Girl Guide to Money. 2008.
Money management often gets left out of home or classroom discussions. This book gives practical advice on a range of topics relating to money: tips on jobs, saving, debt, spending and budgeting, how to become a girl entrepreneur, what to scrimp on (and what not to), and the hidden price of cheap. Age 10+
[Education S Collection S. 332.4 R615c]


Booth, Coe. Tyrell. 2006.
Fifteen-year-old Tyrell, who is living in a Bronx homeless shelter with his spaced-out mother and his younger brother, tries to avoid temptation to score some money so he does not end up in jail like his father. Followed by Bronxwood. Age 15+
[Education S Collection S. B6445t]

Curtis, Christopher Paul. Bucking the Sarge. 2004.
Deeply involved in his cold and manipulative mother’s shady business dealings in Flint, Michigan, fourteen-year-old Luther keeps a sense of humor while running the Happy Neighbor Group Home For Men, all the while dreaming of going to college and becoming a philosopher. Age 12+
[Education S Collection S. C941bu]

Fletcher, Christine. Ten Cents a Dance. 2008.
In 1940s Chicago, fifteen-year-old Ruby hopes to escape poverty by becoming a taxi dancer in a nightclub, but the work has unforeseen dangers and hiding the truth from her family and friends becomes increasingly difficult. Age 14+
[Center for Children’s Books S. F632t]

Godbersen, Anna. The Luxe. 2007.
In Manhattan in 1899, five teens of different social classes lead dangerously scandalous lives, despite the strict rules of society and the best-laid plans of parents and others. First in a series. 14+
[Center for Children’s Books S. G541lu]

Paulsen, Gary. Flat Broke: The Theory, Practice, and Destructive Properties of Greed. 2011.
Fourteen-year-old Kevin is a hard worker, so when his income is cut off he begins a series of businesses, from poker games to selling snacks, earning money to take a girl to a dance, but his partners soon tire of his methods. Sequel to Liar, Liar. Age 8+
[Education S Collection S. P285fl]

Scott, Kieran. She’s So Dead to Us. 2010.
Told in two voices, high school juniors Allie, who now lives on the poor side of town, and Jake, the “Crestie” whose family bought her house, develop feelings for one another that are complicated by her former friends, his current ones, who refuse to forgive her for her father’s bad investment that cost them all. First in the He’s So/She’s So trilogy. 14+
[Education S Collection S. Sco849s]

Vail, Rachel. Lucky. 2008.
As Phoebe and her clique of privileged girlfriends get ready to graduate from eighth grade, a financial scandal threatens her family’s security — as well as Phoebe’s social status — but ultimately it teaches her the real meaning of friendship. First in the Avery Sisters trilogy. 13+
[Education S Collection S. V193l]

Von Ziegesar, Cecily. Gossip Girl: A Novel. 2002.
The first book in this popular series presents a world of jealousy and betrayal at an exclusive private school in Manhattan, highlighting tensions between students both rich and poor. Inspired a television show of the same name, airing on The CW since 2007. 14+
[Uni High Fiction V95g]

Wolff, Virginia Euwer. Make Lemonade. 1993.
In order to earn money for college, fourteen-year-old LaVaughn babysits for a teenage mother in this verse novel. First book in the Make Lemonade trilogy, followed by True Believer and This Full House. Age 10+
[Center for Children’s Books S. W8322MA]


Don’t Buy It (Corporation for Public Broadcasting)
This interactive site sponsored by PBS uses games and other features to teach kids about decoding advertising rhetoric and spending their money wisely. An ALA Great Web Site for Kids.

It All Adds Up (Council on Economic Education)
This site features quizzes and other activities that help teens learn more about financial planning and develop money management skills.

The Mint (Northwestern Mutual Foundation)
This site features resources for kids, teens, parents, and teachers to help children, families, and communities develop good financial habits. An ALA Great Web Site for Kids.