Books I Read This Month (April2022)

Free to Focus – Michael Hyatt
The Wise Ass – Tom McCaffrey
The Private Eye – Brian Vaughan
The Dark Knight: Master Race – Frank Miller
Batman: The Long Halloween – Jeph Loeb & Tim Sale
The Neil Gaiman Library (Vol. 1) – Neil Gaiman, P. Craig Russell et al.
The Oneness Hypothesis: Beyond the Boundary of Self – Philip Ivanhoe et al.
Spawn (Vol. 1) – Todd McFarlane

I like to flip flop in my reading habits, as far genres. Last month’s theme was lifelong jackass trying to reform his life and this month’s is 12-year-old energy. Although I did read “Free to Focus.” Not for me. Aimed at the young professional climbing the corporate ladder. I’m in a “correctional facility” so all of that advice was worthless.

My aunt sent me “The Wise Ass,” presumably because I’ve the same last name as the author. Actually not a bad modern retelling of “The Golden Ass,” an ancient comedy in Latin. In this version, the main character goes into witness protection, and befriends a talking donkey.

After reading Spawn for the first time, I realize I thought it was a lot cooler than it is. Probably because my mom wouldn’t lemme read it when I was 10. It’s like what a 15 year old nerd imagines a bad ass superhero to look like–he’s even black! even if the plot lines in the initial issues are a little simplistic, the illustrations are incredibly graphic and detailed.

“Master Race” is the latest addition to Frank Miller’s critically acclaimed Batman, and it doesn’t disappoint. Almost every major DC hero makes a cameo. The chapters illustrated by Miller as well are like Fear&Loathing meets Batman. 

“The Long Halloween” is the graphic novel that’s served as the primary inspiration for the Christopher Nolan movies, who even wrote a preface for this edition. 

The Neil Gaiman Library is a comics rendering of Gaiman’s short stories–they weren’t originally written by Gaiman as a graphic novel like Sandman, but are still well-done in the hand of P. Craig Russell.

I was hoping “The Oneness Hypothesis” was meant for a general audience, but it turned out to be an erudite examination of the philosophy & history of the “Oneness Hypothesis,” the idea that we are part of a larger whole, and our experience of being a part from everything else is an illusion of consciousness. It’s more commonly found in Eastern spirituality, which is generally more communal than the individualistic West. Interesting but a little too scholarly for my taste.

“The Private Eye” was the gem of the month, a SciFi graphic novel set in a future where there is no more internet after the cloud “explodes” and revealed everyone’s internet history, causing chaos in everyone’s personal life. Now, everyone dons a costume/alias before going out into society. Everything Brian Vaughan touches is gold.

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