Book Giveaways

The Money Tree: A Story About Finding the Fortune in Your Own Backyard

April 27, 2020

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You are never at the mercy of fortune as long as you have an appetite for hard work and a willingness to step outside your comfort zone.


When it comes to starting a business, most people are familiar with two fundamental methods. The first way is the old-school method of writing a business plan, seeking funding from banks, wealthy family members, or by maxing out personal credit cards. If it works, that’s great, but many times these businesses fail, leaving the founder with serious life consequences.

The second way is the startup model popularized by Silicon Valley and shows like Shark Tank: the founder has an idea, then seeks capital from investors in exchange for equity.

In both of these approaches, the person who wants to start a business is financially dependent on someone else.

Chris Guillebeau, the bestselling author of The $100 Startup and Side Hustle is here to offer a “Third Way,” a practical model to help people learn the skill of self-reliance in the new economy. Guillebeau is back with a new format—a fresh and inspirational story about the power you have to create your own financial destiny. His previous book, Side Hustle, was the answer to those wishing to make extra money and enjoy the freedom of entrepreneurship without having to quit their current job. Now, in The Money Tree: A Story About Finding the Fortune in Your Own Backyard, Guillebeau crafts a compelling story with captivating characters to share its core insight: you are never at the mercy of fortune as long as you’re willing to work hard and step outside your comfort zone.

Jake Aarons, the book’s protagonist, is in trouble. He’s being evicted from his apartment in fewer than thirty days, his $50,000 bill in student loans is overdue, and his job at a digital marketing agency is on the line thanks to a corporate merger. To top it off, his new relationship was going so well, and with everything else falling down around him, he might lose his girlfriend, too.

In search of answers, Jake reluctantly attends a weekly group meeting. Everyone in the group is trying to launch a lucrative side project. Over the course of several weeks, Jake undertakes a series of challenges, beginning with a make-or-break mission to earn $1,000 in a single weekend. Ultimately, he discovers the untapped skills he needs to take control of his finances—and his life.

This book will help those who dream of starting a side hustle for a second source of income, breaking free from the constraints of debt and despair, and who need an inspiring example to follow.


"Chris Guillebeau has always been one of our most inspired business minds — teaching us about everything from traveling the world to building a side hustle. Now, with The Money Tree, he shows he’s also a terrific storyteller. If you’re hoping to make a living and make a life, this book is an essential read.”

—Daniel H. Pink, author of When and To Sell Is Human

“The brilliant Chris Guillebeau has written multiple bestsellers about how we can re-imagine work to create more freedom, opportunity, and security in our lives. Here, however, he comes at this subject in a different way—through story. By harnessing the irresistible power of story-telling, he makes a different approach to work seem exciting and possible in an entirely new way.”

—Gretchen Rubin, author of The Four Tendencies and The Happiness Project



Chris Guillebeau is the New York Times bestselling author of The $100 Startup, Side Hustle, The Happiness of Pursuit, and other books. During a lifetime of self-employment that included a four-year commitment as a volunteer executive in West Africa, he visited every country in the world (193 in total) before his thirty-fifth birthday. His daily podcast, Side Hustle School, is downloaded more than two million times a month. To learn more visit

The books for this giveaway are being provided by Portfolio, an imprint of Penguin Random House.

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Editor's Note: Porchlight Book Company has implemented the CDC’s recommendations for workplace cleaning, disinfecting, and social distancing. We continue shipping books even as employees nonessential to that operation have been directed to work from home, but book giveaway shipments may see a lag in shipping time as we prioritize shipping book orders. We do want to keep getting you great books to read during this time, so hang in there! 

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