Long interested in the ancient (though still utterly modern) art of astrology, W. Nikola-Lisa uses an old natal chart he had cast in the late 1980s to delve into the history, philosophy, and practices of astrology. And he does so in true Gemini—actually, double Gemini—fashion, dragging two foils along for the ride: Castor and Pollux, the Gemini twins. Hovering somewhere between a Galilean dialogue and a Seinfeld episode, Circles, Lines, and Squiggles will both inform and entertain you. But how to end such a ride: where else but with an exploration of the author's life as a writer as seen through the indicators in his natal chart.
Cleverly using qualities of his own Sun sign of Gemini as a narrative tool, W. Nikola-Lisa presents complex astrological material in a fun, engaging format. Beyond simply academic or entertaining, the material he presents is fundamental to understanding the very astronomical, geological, philosophical, and historical concepts that undergird astrology.
Why is the Zodiac ordered as it is? What makes the points of the Ascendant and Midheaven special? What were the philosophical concepts behind astrology's earliest iterations? Mr. Nikola-Lisa explores these questions for us, giving voice to our own inner curiosities through the characters of Castor and Pollux. I would highly recommend Circles, Lines, and Squiggles to anyone interested in the primary concepts that have animated the art of astrology since the dawn of civilization.
What makes this astrology book important is the premise of “the Teacher and the Student” (perhaps adult and child, or novice). It attempts to share and discuss broad and subtle topics of wide reaching concepts. The author gives us a way to begin a dialogue on the esoteric, literary, philosophical, and related scientific background of astrology, especially the underpinnings of its theories. I could see my granddaughter reading this book in relation to the philosophers she is studying, as well as myself, who has been a lifetime devotee of astrological interpretation.
Reviewed by Sarah Pickett, a.k.a. Saradipity the Chicago Astrologer
W. Nikola-Lisa has managed the impossible: finding a fun and engaging way to root the fundamentals of astrology into an interesting narrative. Understanding the underpinnings of the astrological system is challenging, but the author's metaphors create clear images of astrology in motion that anyone can understand.In short, Circles, Squiggles and Lines is a great primer for anyone trying to get a visual footing of astrological concepts, an exceptionally hard task given that the author does so without the aid of tables, charts, or diagrams.
Figure 5 from the Readers Guide, an addendum
that explains the mechanics of how a natal chart works.
Circles Lines and Squiggles by W. Nikola-Lisa is the result of the author's attempt to understand an old astrological chart he had constructed for himself in the 1980s. With his companions, Castor and Pollux, the Gemini twins, the author converses over his discoveries and shares them with you in this entertaining guide to astrology.
This book is just as creative as it is knowledgeable. Initially, I wondered how reading about someone else's astrological chart would be all that interesting, but as I read this book, I learned a lot more about astrology than I ever knew. Nikola-Lisa (and of course the inquisitive twins) really held my attention as he not only explained his chart and what it said about him but also how and why astrology is actually very scientific. I came away with a greater respect and understanding for astrology in terms of its ability to accurately predict personality, and enjoyed the author's quest to determine what it meant in terms of his own journey.
This book isn't strictly about the author's personal chart though, he actually teaches you a lot of historical information and bits of astronomy, not to mention exactly how a birth chart is calculated using precise mathematical equations and geometry. While some of these topics had the capacity to become overly complex, the author manages to keep it simple through his accessible dialogue between himself, the twins, and later, his astrology guide, Loren.
One of my favorite things to learn about was the "ages" we live in, not only how each age corresponds to a particular era, but why such symbols came to represent that era. As a fan of biblical studies, it was very intriguing to see how astrology lines up with the Bible. I also enjoyed being taught the ins and outs of how the author's chart was interpreted. As he explained what each section and planet meant for himself, I did my own chart on a website to see what I could discover. In short, the author has awakened my curiosity to learn more about my personality so I can hopefully reach my full potential just as he has.
If you love astrology, chances are you'll enjoy Circles Lines and Squiggles by W. Nikola-Lisa. You'll get all sorts of information explained in detail, with plenty of notations and sources to explore after every chapter. You'll gain an understanding of every aspect of astrology, from its origins to its faults, and appreciate its scientific accuracy. You'll also obtain the ability to understand your own chart much more thoroughly. I recommend this book to people who love knowledge, personality charts, and learning.
Honors and Awards
Finalist in the 2021 American Book Festival's "Best Book" Awards
in the category of Creative Nonfiction
Title: Circles, Lines, and Squiggles
Subtitle: Astrology for the Curious-Minded
Author: W. Nikola-Lisa
Design Consultant: Deb Tremper,
Six Penny Graphics
Publisher: Gyroscope Books
Wholesaler: Ingram Content Group
Release: October 2021
Age Level: 15 and up
Page Count: 290
Publisher's Cataloging-In-Publication Data
Prepared by The Donahue Group, Inc.
Available in the Following Formats:
ISBN: 978-1-7341923-6-0 (paperback, $15.99)
ISBN: 978-1-7341923-7-7 (e-book, $8.99)
For orders by U.S. trade bookstores, retail outlets, and public libraries,
please contact the Ingram Content Group: Retail (800) 937-8000,
Libraries (800) 937-5300, or visit www.ingramcontent.com.