POPPIES OF IRAQ
A GAME FOR SWALLOWS
The first thing I read this year was these three comix about growing up in the middle east. POPPIES OF IRAQ is set in Mosul and Paris, BADDAWI in Palestine and Beirut, and A GAME FOR SWALLOWS takes place over the course of one night during the Lebanese civil war. POPPIES was my favorite of the three: it was occasionally funny and I learned some of Iraq's modern history, which I had previously known basically nothing about. The other two were fine too, and if there are future volumes by either author I'll read them.
THE SACRED ENNEAGRAM:
I love the enneagram and have found it to be helpful and hilarious in understanding myself and the way I interact with people, so I wanted to love this book, but alas I did not. Heuertz's explanation of the gut, heart, and head "intelligence centers" seemed accurate enough and sort of interesting as another aspect of enneagram types, and his history of the origins of the enneagram (secret Sufi societies, Egyptian Christian ascetics, ecstatic visions in Bolivia), was bizarre and fun and I barely believe any of it. My frustration is that the book claims to give practical advice about spiritual growth based on yr enneagram type, but doesn't. I was hoping for, like, thought patterns to avoid and suggestions for specific prayer practices or meditation prompts for each type, but there wasn't much of that. I'm a 4 on the enneagram, and the book's advice for 4s is this: "rest in solitude." Wonderful, thank you. I know that if I want to be a person who prays I should just pray and not read a book about praying, but as someone who has learned a lot of what I know from books and who sees spiritual value in the enneagram, I had hoped this book would be better.
If you know yr enneagram type, tell it to me and I'll spend several minutes thinking about you.
other books I read this month: