February Book Haul 2017

February Book Haul.jpg
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
March 5, 2017

January’s Book haul opened the year up with some portentous books, and February continued that pattern to boot.

Without further ado, let’s begin:

Philosophy Of Tolkien: The Worldview Of Lord Of The Rings by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.

Having been reading quite a bit of Kreeft’s work in the last 6 months, it was intriguing to see him have a book which show insights on Lord Of The Rings.  The review of this is coming soon.

Summerhill School: A New View Of Childhood by A.S. Neil

Summerhill is a school that strove to allow children the ability to make choices in school in nigh everything that affects them, thus allowing them the option to be democratic in the very thing that will form the foundation for their life: education.  It’s an intriguing read, and if you are interested to read more about it check the review here.

On The Shoulder Of Hobbits: The Road To Virtue With Tolkien & Lewis by Louis Markos

This book, like The Philosophy of Tolkien, is part of my recent binge on all-things Tolkien, and it was quite the book.  Markos does an exemplary job of giving salient examples of virtues which are sprinkled throughout the works of Tolkien & Lewis, and does so in cogent fashion.  Review of this coming soon, too.

Making Choices, Practical Wisdom For Every Moral Decision by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.

The topic of morality doesn’t get enough attention, and having never taken a course on morality, nor done any research on it, thought it prudent to see what gems of wisdom one could glean from such a book like this.

Confessions Of A Reformed Southern Belle – A Poet’s Collection Of Love, Loss & Renewal by
Tosha Michelle

Am about half way through this.  Anyone that’s read Tosha’s poetry will know her type of work, which is always engaging as it is emotive.  Tosha is to poetry what stars are to the night sky.  A veritable Sorceress of the written word, in this book Tosha infuses her emotions on paper and holds nothing back.  It’s really a rather heartfelt read so far.  A review of this will come soon.

The Hobbit Party: The Vision Of Freedom That Tolkien Got, And The West Forgot by Jay Richards

Thrice is nice?  This is another one within the Tolkien-binge-series yours truly has been ensconced in.  The Hobbit Party features insights on philosophy, theology, political theory, and much more.  Looking forward to reading this.

The Best Things In Life- A Contemporary Socrates Looks At Power, Pleasure, Truth & The Good Life by Peter Kreeft Ph.D.

This is the foundation or Kreeft’s Socrates Meets Series, which essentially is the author’s fictional foray into questioning the greatest minds in philosophy through the fictional character of Socrates.   The author explores many salient issues such as money, education, morality, etc.  Looking forward to reading this very much.

The Collected Poems Of William Wordsworth by William Wordsworth

Hoping to engage in some of Wordsworth’s work, which has always intrigued me, and this  collection seemed a proper beginning.

Starcraft Evolution by Timothy Zahn

This is Sci-fi novel for the Starcraft fan.  If you haven’t read any of the previous books, or know about the game, this will probably not make much sense even though the author’s writing is pretty good.  Starcraft essentially follows three separate species, Humans being one of them, through their ongoing conflicts.  Might or might not write a review on it, we’ll see.

The Hunger Games Trilogy by Susanne Collins

If you haven’t heard of the Hunger Games, feel free to click the X on the top right of the screen.  Just kidding!  Although have seen the movie, haven’t read the books, so thought it might be intriguing to actually read them since books are magnitudes superior to any movie.

Oil Pulling Therapy: Detoxifying & Healing The Body Through Oral Cleansing by Dr. Bruce Fife.

Having been oil pulling for nigh 3 years, thought it prudent to research this further, and lo and behold, there was one sentence that was worth the entire price of the book, which wasn’t much anyways considering how much you gain from it.  If you’re looking for a simple way to help your health, ponder getting his book, or at least learning about oil pulling.  A review of this was just shared today here.

Holding Their Own [Volume 13]Renegade by Joe Nobody

Holding Their Own is post-apocalyptic fiction at its finest.  Haven’t read the book, so can’t comment on it.  But the series has been very engaging, the story is rather realistic, the characters are very intriguing and grow throughout the series, and it keeps a great pace throughout.  Holding Their Own is one of my three favorite post-apocalyptic series for sure.

Lawless [Lawless Trilogy] [V1] by Tarah Benner

Another post apocalyptic book that am hoping is a solid read.  Haven’t read any of Benner’s work yet, so am looking forward to delving into it.

Final Word

Make sure to look for the reviews of these books in the coming weeks/months.  Many of these books offer much to the readier in a variety of ways.

That said, what did all of you get this month?  If you have any book suggestions or comments, please feel free to share them below.

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This article is free and open source. You have permission to republish this article under a Creative Commons license with attribution to Zy Marquiez and TheBreakaway.wordpress.com.

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Breakaway Goals For 2017

2017
TheBreakaway
Zy Marquiez
January 9, 2017

“A dream is your creative vision of your life in the future.  You must break out of your current comfort zone and become comfortable with the unfamiliar and the unknown.”
– Denis Waitley

In the Breakaway 2016 – A Year In Review, a tally was conducted of which goals were met success, and which met failures.

Now it is time to set goals for 2017, which will be both for the blog and some personal ones as well.

Each goal – written in bold – follows with commentary below.

Goal #1: Paint 25 paintings.

Last year, the goal was 50, and 30 wasn’t even achieved.  Although really wanted to attempt the same goal again, it’s more prudent/pragmatic to take a more conservative goal in this instance.  The other reason for not making this goal too large is that the canvases which will be used this year are 2-3 times larger than last years.  That’ll simply mean more time put towards painting, regardless of total goal.

Goal #2:  Write and share 50 poems of any type.

This was the goal for last year, but unlike painting, which takes considerable time, this goal will be achieved this year because we will not sacrifice too much personal time for the blog.  Failure is not an option.

Goal #3:  Write 70 new book reviews for the blog.

Last year’s goal was 50, and it was pretty much crushed by 50%.  This year, although there shouldn’t be any personal setbacks or anything, the goal will be 70.  It’ll still be considerable work, but it’s increased enough to be a challenge, while not overly so that it feels like a finish line that never ends.  Really want to make it higher, but let’s not get overly ambitions.

Goal #4:  Ask more questions of individuals, and listen more.

Seems simple, and yet, it’s a goal that will net more benefits.  It’s not like me to be overly talkative, but, in order to increase mindfulness, being more mentally engaged on the listening side of a conversation will bring to fruition considerably greater aspects of myself.

Goal #5:  Be even more inquisitive than in the past.

This goal is the same as last year, and it was met.  However, its important to me to continue to foster my intellectual curiosity in order to grow as an individual and be able to help others.  What’s not to like about that goal?

Goal #6:  Take more deep breaths.

What!?  Yeah, that’s a few friends told me.  But really, the reason for this is, again, it helps develop mindfulness, and keep my mind intensely focused, which helps in every other part of life.  Plus, it will remind me to meditate more often.

Goal #7:  Meet new people from all walks of life, figure out what makes them tick, and why they are the way they are.

Meeting people is a great goal, and it used to be really hard for me due to being shy, but with time its become slightly easier.  That said, meeting people is one thing, but figuring out what makes them tick deep down in their core is something significantly different, and something that almost never happens due to so many superficial relationships.  That, and it takes time to really get to know people and their drives/passions.  Regardless, if am able to engage with 15-20 folks in this manner by the end of the year, am going to be more than happy with this one.

Goal #8:  Read 100 books, or 20,000 pages from books – which ever goal comes first between those two.

This goal was succeeded last year thankfully.  About 3/4ths of the book read were non-fiction research books of many types, with the rest being fiction of mostly dystopian or horror type.  Would love to up this goal, but this goal requires enormous consistency and everything to go right.  At least having a goodreads account helps track which books – and how many – were read.

Goal #9:  Workout at least 5 hours a week – over 250 hours in the year.

Although the amount of time [hours logged] working out last year was within goal range, not enough ‘days’ were spent doing that.  The days worked out by myself would venture into 1 to 2 hours many times, but would only go about 3-4 times a week, rather than 5 consistently.  That said, from this year on we’re just going to add hours worked out by each week’s end.  If the total hours worked out by the end of the year goes over 250 hours, this will be great.  And my goal is to do it either by doing yoga, cardio, lifting weights, etc.

Goal #10:  Take a lot more time ruminating before carrying out all decisions in life.

This is definitely the most complex, since it requires constant mindfulness and focus to have a highly more deliberate and incisive thought process.  Without a doubt, this goal will probably net arguably the greatest benefits, although it might be the toughest to achieve/implement.

More goals might be added, but for now that seems to run the gamut across most if not all of the core goals that will be striven for in this blog.

What are your goals for this year?  Have put them into action?  Are you already on your way?  Let me know.

Throughout the year, regardless of what takes place within the rollercoaster that is life, please keep in mind this gem that Picasso once intimated:

“Our goals can only be reached through a vehicle of a plan, in which we must fervently believe, and upon which we must vigorously act.  There is no other route to success.”