Troy’s Book Club: a three-fer

Three books, all quite unique, all quite lovely, all easily read.

1. The Four Agreements, by Don Miguel Ruiz, is a self-described “practical guide to personal freedom”. It’s a small book, and can be read in a few sittings, or maybe even just one if you’re a real go-getter. I took it in over a few sittings–I need to digest things. The Four Agreements are quite simple, and if you can put them into practice in your life, I can see how they can make a big difference in how a person receives the world. This is no spoiler, and you should still read the book; here are The Four Agreements:

1. Be Impeccable With Your Word

2. Don’t Take Anything Personally

3. Don’t Make Assumptions, and

4. Always do your best

There is much more behind each of these ideas and they all really deserve some time to be dwelt on. Here’s a few quotes for your consideration:
“How many times do we make our spouse, our children, or our parents pay for the same mistake?”

“Use the word to share your love.”

“Making assumptions in our relationships is really asking for problems. Often we make the assumption that our partners know what we think and that we don’t have to say what we want. We assume they are going to do what we want because they know us so well. If they don’t do what we assume they should do, we feel hurt and say ‘You should have known.'”

“Doing your best, you are going to live life intensely.”

“Without action upon an idea, there will be no manifestation, no results, no reward.”

“You express your own divinity by being alive and by loving yourself and others. It is an expression of God to say, ‘Hey, I love you.'”

– – – – – – – – –

2. “Chester 5000XYV” by Jess Fink, is an “adult” comicbook, or as the cover proclaims, it’s “An erotic, robotic, Victorian romance”. Even more, it’s a “silent” comicbook—while there are some sound effects and hieroglyphic-filled word balloons, there is no standard narration, which is pretty neat as the story then relies upon the reader to gather what’s happening from Ms. Fink’s great control of expressions and body language. The artwork is graphic but tasteful, full-spirited and sensitive. Simply put, it’s so well-done that I would take issue with any person who tries to describe this as “standard” pornography. There’s sex (and a robot), sure, but it sure isn’t anything to feel guilty or ashamed about. Great job, Ms. Fink!

– – – – – – – – –

3. “De Tales”, by Fabio Moon and Gabriel Ba, is another comicbook, and it makes me want to travel. These twin brothers are from Sau Paulo, Brazil and that is where this book of short stories is set. The stories are each little vignettes and showcase the brothers’ ability to convey the mood of a setting in the artwork and to describe characters with just a few lines of dialogue. There’s not much more needed to say besides repeating what I said a few sentences ago: “De Tales” makes me want to travel, specifically to Brazil.

Support your local Milwaukee businesses!—I got my copy of “The Four Agreements” from Boswell Book Company, “Chester 5000XYV” came from Tool Shed Toys, and “De Tales” was purchased at Collector’s Edge Comics.


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