The Legend of the Monk and the Merchant: Principles for Successful Living
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The Legend of the Monk and the Merchant: Principles for Successful Living

4.08 of 5 stars 4.08  ·  rating details  ·  382 ratings  ·  47 reviews
A fantastic adventure of personal growth - set in 16th century Italy. Readers will meet and join young Julio, who is taken on a quest into adulthood - as his grandfather reveals mysterious family secrets.

Woven through the story are 12 principles of success including: Work Hard and God will Prosper You Be Meek Before God, but Bold Before Men Live Debt-Free and Below Your Me...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published February 25th 2005 by Thomas Nelson (first published January 28th 2004)
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Read in one sitting. Very easy and fun read. Recommended by Dave Ramsey.
Sep 27, 2009 Chris rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Absolutely
In reading this book, it was very interesting I had a hard time putting it down. It lists 12 principles for successful living, that are all based on scripture. No this isn't your typical "self-help" book, this book has a very fascinating tale of a young man and his adventures. This is a book that you should read if you want to remind yourself of what is important in life and in business. I found myself imagining myself in the shoes of Julio who is the young man that is being told the story by hi...more
Mar 27, 2013 J. rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: own
This was a fantastic book, I loved it. I always love material that counters the "evil rich" nonsense. I wish I had read something like this years ago.

I don't understand why schools don't make books like this required reading, yet they can't seem to get books full of death and darkness into kid's hands fast enough.

The story centers around a Catholic family, but isn't condescending toward other denominations/religions. Though the principles are mostly Christian in nature they could easily be appli...more
I've been a listener of Dave Ramsey's radio show for a long time, and this book embodies his principles in a short fable format. The fable itself was well-written and enjoyable...a grandfather passing on his knowledge of scripture and business sense on to his grandson. In the back of the book, the actual Biblical references are listed. I think these principles would apply even if one wasn't a person of faith. It's common sense advice that anyone could use and apply to his/her life. It was defini...more
This is such a great book!! I love how it is told in a story. It makes it more interesting. We get to experience all the things that the characters experience and all the lessons that he learned. I would recommend taking notes when reading this book. I would try to apply the lessons learned in this book to my life. This book opened my eyes to a lot of things that I would have never thought of. If you want to create a successful habit then I would encourage you to read this book. But don't stop t...more
Chad Warner
Aug 10, 2014 Chad Warner rated it 1 of 5 stars
Recommended to Chad by: Andy Tabisz
This modern fable teaches that businesspeople play an important role in doing God’s work by financially supporting the church. Although I agree with that, and the book makes a few other worthwhile points, I was disappointed to find that it teaches the unbiblical prosperity theology (AKA prosperity gospel, AKA health and wealth gospel). For examples, see Principle 1: “Work Hard and God Will Prosper You”, and Principle 2: “Financial Prosperity is Connected to Soul Prosperity.” With unbiblical less...more
Great lessons for living life.
Mar 08, 2012 Jon rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: 2012
I finished this book this morning. I read it because it is recommended by Dave Ramsey and his team. I liked many of the principles talked about in the book. I like the fable story way of communicating important principles. Most are common sense principles; yet is is surprising how often I don't act with common sense. I liked the idea of successful men being able and willing to mentor those seeking to make a difference in their lives, and the idea of a long lasting mentoring relationship. I also...more
David E McClendon, Sr
The Legend of the Monk and the Merchant: Twelve Keys to Successful Living.

This book tells the reader a story about a young man who is faced with the choice of serving God as a monk or as a merchant. He chooses the path of a merchant and our story takes us through the challenges and lessons he learns along the way.
There are no earth-shattering revelations in this book, but it helps to remind us of things we already know. Depending on your current beliefs, it may actually change the way you look a...more
Steven Kirkpatrick
The Legend of the Monk and the Merchant: Principles for Successful Living was an excellent read. The story is set in historic Italy, one of my favorite settings for a book. But the most important parts about this book are the timeless principles.

The narration is a grandfather who has been a successful businessman reading through his journal to his grandson. The grandfather describes his meetings with his mentor every three years and the principles that his mentor taught him. He also covers the...more
Brian French
Felber shares 12 principles from the point of view of a grandfather sharing to his grandson about how to be successful in business. The premise is that what merchants (or secular) work can be holy to God if God is honored first and these 12 principles are followed.

1. Work hard and God will prosper you.
2. Financial Prosperity is often connected to Soul Prosperity
3. A man must do what he can to provide for his family
4. Trials develop your character, preparing you for increased blessings
5. Take re...more
Dan McConkie
This book is somewhat superficial about what it takes to be successful... but in a way that works. It is not a heavy read, in fact, it can easily be read in a couple hours. There are no big revelations that will cause you to change your life. However, for someone that is working on self-improvement and on becoming successful, it is a nice reminder of the direction you should be going. It lists 10 principles (or so) that, if followed, will allow God to bless you in your life with success.

I like t...more
This book is an easy read; something you can finish in a couple of hours. Written as a parable, the basic message is about financial and business growth and principles through Christian teachings. While Felber does offer some good principles, i did not find the tale particularly thought-provoking nor motivational.
Clint Hyden
This book was given to all of the Financial Peace University coordinators over a year ago by Dave Ramsey's team. I finally picked it up and completed the easy read in just a few days. This book is in the same vein as "Who Moved My Cheese", but with a financial twist. It offers an easy read with tweleve financial principles for life. I'm not surprised that Dave Ramsey requires all of his employees to read this book. Terry Felber and Dave are cut from the same cloth in their views of how to handle...more
Trevor Acy
Jun 28, 2011 Trevor Acy rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Trevor by: Dave Ramsey
The Legend of the Monk and the Merchant is a great quick book for a weekend read. Like most books on business the content isn't ground-breaking. But where it shines is the storytelling. Felber takes you back in time to Venice, Italy where a grandfather recants an 18 year epic to his grandson on how he came to discover the 12 principles for successful living. The characters are all unique in their emotions and attitudes that allow you to identify with them quickly which really keeps the tale aliv...more
Richard Kuhn
I think this book is really good. Although simplistic in style, the story was good and the characters interesting. This author is like Andy Andrews and the story itself mirrors Andrew's narrative style. That being said, the best part of the book for me was the discussion section at the back where the research and reasonings behind the 12 principles are fleshed out in more detail. This research and the scriptures and references detailed were simply amazing and I will refer to that section often.
I saw that the forward was by Dave Ramsey so I started listening to it. I think it may be better to read this one because the narrator on the audio is not that great. Its same message that Ramsey gives in his books but in a different perspective. God oriented and interesting. Best part for me was when he says, "financial prosperity means soul prosperity" leave the guilt for being rich and wealthy, God wants you to be. Nice!
Aug 13, 2011 Samantha rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommended to Samantha by: Dave Ramsey
Took me about an hour to read.. super clear, straight forward financial tips couched in a story framework, geared toward the christian person looking for sound principles. I read this on the recommendation of Dave Ramsey, it was pretty much what I expected. Could have been read to a youngster, though, as its VERY simplistic.
Ok, not great. I agree with the 12 principles, but I guess after listening to Dave Ramsey so long there wasn't really anything new. There was a point or two where it seemed to sound a bit like prosperity doctrine, but overall, I believe that living by these principles will give you success with money.
Heard about this book from Dave Ramsey.. it was one of his highly recommended books to read. It's poorly written/edited sometimes but the principles he presents are really good, and I like that it's written in narrative form. I definitely recommend it! You can read a chapter (5/6 pages) over lunch break :D
Jeremy Waters
This book shares some great principles about faith, life, and work by telling a good story about a Renaissance era grandfather passing his legacy and wisdom to his grandson. Good principles in a quick read. I can understand why it is required reading for everyone who works for Dave Ramsey.
Sophia Walker
I really enjoyed this book about biblical principles and success. It gives some principles that are biblical in nature but practical for success in the business place. It was an easy read and I finished it in less than 2 days. I highly recommend this read for someone who believes in God.
Since I am both the monk and the merchant these days...this book held my attention as it attempts to connect the symbiotic relationship between those who live in the marketplace and those who are called to professional ministry.
Ryan Boomershine
This was a dose of Catholic prosperity Gospel, I suppose. It was a parable inside a story and had a few too many details. It wasn't worthless, but...I don't remember why I bought this, actually.
Rebekah H.
Great principles, not writing :)
This is a good way to introduce solid Biblical financial principles to young people and families. Just don't expect much as far as literary quality.
There are some good aspects to this book. but when I saw principle #2, "financial prosperity is connected to soul prosperity"... I knew this is a book I could never recommend. :(
Jan 07, 2008 Taylor added it
Super story about a boy who learns the value of mentorship. Love the storyline. Short book easy ready. Everyone should read this and you will gain a ton from it.
Doug Frantz
excellent meaning and valuable reminder of simple truths on God and business. the story itself felt slightly forced to be period but an enjoyable read all the same
Loved this book. If I ever have children I want them to here this story. It is a simple story, but teachers very powerful principles I wish I'd knew earlier.
Lisa Voecks
Feb 22, 2012 Lisa Voecks rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommended to Lisa by: Dave Ramsey
Found this book from a recommendation by Dave Ramsey. It's a very quick read (2 hours on the plane) but filled with excellent life reminders.
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