book review

Post image for The concept of happiness: 5 essential books

The concept of happiness is a subject that endlessly engrosses me and is often the subject of Hipster Monk posts. Humans strive for happiness. People ask: What does it take to live a happy life? Money? Success? Sex? Family? Faith? Is there some secret that no one is telling me? I don’t have the ultimate […]


Post image for Zen and the Art of Happiness

Zen and the Art of Happiness Chris Prentiss Power Press (2006) Chris Prentiss opens Zen and the Art of Happiness by writing, “there is only one way to achieve lasting happiness. That way is simply: be happy.” It’s a great opening that made me eager to read on. Unfortunately, the rest of the slim 145 […]


Post image for Happiness for people who can’t stand positive thinking [Booklist]

The Antidote: Happiness for People Who Can’t Stand Positive Thinking Oliver Burkeman Faber & Faber, inc. (2012) Newsflash: life isn’t always a bowl of cherries. There are a lot of happy, joyful events that happen every day, but there is also a lot of sadness, failure and stress. Is the key to happiness focusing on […]

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Post image for More than Human: Tim Flach’s stunning portraits of animals

Photographer Tim Flach’s newest book is an amazing collection of animal portraits called “More than Human.” The photos of these non-human animals showcase personalities and expressiveness rarely captured in still photography and solidifies the bond we share with all of our planet-mates.


Post image for “New Atheism” for kids

“The faith in God around our globe Is just bad magic, just a joke Rabbis, priests and muftis, too Are “naked apes” like me and you Only, they see floating ghosts And wear quite funny caps and clothes” The excerpt above is from a German children’s book called Wo bitte geht’s zu Gott?, fragte das […]


Post image for Zen master pets [Booklist]

Guardians of Being Eckhart Tolle & Patrick McDonnell New World Library (2009) Dogs and cats have a divine purpose. Part of that purpose is to help us humans realize the joy of living in the present moment. At least that is the take-home message of Guardians of Being, a book collaboration by spiritual guru Eckhart […]


Post image for Sexual healing: Jesús Ángel García’s badbadbad [Booklist]

badbadbad Jesús Ángel García New Pulp Press (2011) The future is here, kids. A novel is no longer limited to printed words on paper. We have the technology! In addition to the old-fashioned book, a novel can include rock and roll music, film, and even a youtube playlist. Almost like a Sunday service at your […]


Post image for Worshipping at the Altar of Rock [Booklist]

Rock and Roll Will Save Your Life Steve Almond Random House (2010) Everyone likes music. Some more than others. But for an unfortunate minority, music is life. It ceases to be merely pleasant background noise and invades every aspect of daily existence. It defines the clothes they wear, influences speech and thought patterns, dictates who […]


Post image for Tales from a Jehovah’s Witness Upbringing [Booklist]

I’m Perfect, You’re Doomed: Tales from a Jehovah’s Witness Upbringing Kyria Abrahams Touchstone (2010) This is a guest post by Hilary D. La Rivierre. When Hipster Monk asked me to read and review I’m Perfect, You’re Doomed by Kyria Abrahams, my first reaction was “No! I do not want to read the jaded woe-is-me stories […]


Eating Animals [Booklist]

by Todd Hebert

Post image for <em>Eating Animals</em> [Booklist]

Eating Animals Jonathan Safran Foer Little, Brown and Company (2009) In Eating Animals, author Jonathan Safran Foer (Everything Is Illuminated) seeks answers to questions he has about where meat comes from, how the animals are treated, and if he should feed animal flesh to his children. Part memoir, part investigative journalism, the book is framed […]


Post image for Afterlives Beyond Heaven and Hell [Booklist]

What happens when you die? Does your soul rise up to heaven or fall to the pits of hell? Do you go through some sort of reincarnation or transmigration process? Do you simply rot in the ground? Usually the answer to the question of afterlife is based on one’s spiritual belief system, or lack thereof. […]