"Are you happy?
Are you happy?
What does that mean?
Which of these words do you not understand?
I understand them all, but it’s a rather complex question."

We all talk to ourselves from time to time; that is simply part of being human. To work out problems, justify certain attitudes, or even because one aspect of our personality conflicts with another, self-discussions are natural. Peterson discovered this truth some time ago, and thus his unique, honest, and often humorous book was born. His treatise reflects on the human condition—everything from men and women, happiness, work, language, education, war, taxes, swearing, sports, TV, and movies to God. Peterson developed an innovative method to go about writing these “conversations.” Seven primary “personality types,” as he calls them, all which are equally taken from his person and mind, develop the conversation. He uses specific, consistent fonts to aid the reader in following along.

Mike is “the basic person most of us would meet and know.” Michael is “the spiritual, reflective” version of the author he strives to be. Mikey is the side of Peterson’s persona that “flairs up in anger.” WUM is Michael Peterson’s humorous side. Dr. Mike is the record keeper of facts, and “mr. mike,” says the author, “is that aspect of my personality which sometimes exhibits negative sides of my nature.” Finally, Micky is the part of Peterson that hones “deep, dark” secrets.

Peterson has produced a disciplined and honest examination of various aspects of what it means to be human in America today. He writes a candidly introspective “conversation” between his different personality types, revealing intriguing insight and individual quirks of human nature with which most readers would be able to identify easily. His book never takes itself too seriously and is truly a pleasure to read.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

Return to USR Home