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Book Review: Control Your Retirement Destiny

Withholding Water

This new book is the first book from my colleague Dana Anspach.  Dana has been writing and blogging for quite some time now, primarily as the voice behind Money Over 55 for (  Dana also is a practicing financial advisor and respected speaker.

If you’re looking for a nuts-and-bolts, do-it-yourself primer on all things related to retirement, this is your book.  Ms. Anspach has put together a very complete overview of all of the areas that you need to consider in order to “Control Your Retirement Destiny”.  By following the advice in this book, you can figure out how much money you need to have to retire, where to put it (meaning, what types of accounts to use), how to invest it, and all of the other important topics that you need to know about.

Along the way, you’ll learn what’s important to know about Social Security, taxes, investment placement, annuities, and mortgages, among other things.  Dana intersperses her experiences in helping others through these topics, and provides excellent examples to illustrate the topics.

In addition to providing advice, within the book Ms. Anspach provides some excellent worksheets that you can use to map out your own retirement – factoring in the money you’ll need at various points on your journey, pinpointing when you’ll need specific amounts.  As you build your worksheets you’ll refine the scenarios, helping you to determine how to generate your retirement income stream in the most efficient and effective manner.

The spreadsheets are pre-filled throughout with an example couple, in order to illustrate how the process has worked for them.  You’ll follow this example throughout all of the decision-points, including when to file for Social Security, how to maintain tax efficiency, and planning retirement income and insurance as you plan your retirement.

In addition to all of the advice given throughout, additional resources are provided to aid your efforts, including recommendations for working with an advisor to help you with the process.

I will recommend this book to anyone who is just starting on the process of mapping out retirement.  This is particularly so for the person who really wants to have a hands-on approach as they plan retirement – but I think the book will also be helpful for the person or couple who just wants to have a better understanding of the important decisions surrounding retirement.


  1. Valentín Badiola says:

    Jim, I would like to buy a copy of this book in paper format at a reasonable price. Any idea on where to buy the book today?


    1. jblankenship says:

      I suggest contacting Dana Anspach, the author. I don’t know what her plans are for this book currently, she is going to be your best source.

  2. Joe Hal says:

    How about for people in their early 60’s about to retire & been saving for 30+ years? Still recommend?

    1. jblankenship says:

      Joe, I’m confident that most anyone in most all situations can benefit from this particular book. It really provides an excellent framework for planning your financial future.


  3. Jim, I just saw this! Thank you for the review! – Dana

    1. jblankenship says:

      You’re welcome – it was my pleasure. Congratulations on the book and good luck!


    2. Bijan says:

      Hi, I am interested in buying a copy of the book mentioned above (Control Your Retirement Destiny”, by Dana Anspach). Please let me know where to purchase this book. Amazon apparently does not sell the book. Thanks, BL

      1. jblankenship says:

        I suggest contacting Dana Anspach, the author. I don’t know what her plans are for this book currently, she is going to be your best source.

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