Flashes of Life is illustrated by the great Jimmie James. Jimmie is a man to meet: he lives the way we all wish we had the guts to. There's no way to properly define this man: an artist, a musician, an actor, a writer, a guy to waste an afternoon with. He sells paintings in SoHo during the summer, smokes cigars with his buddies on rooftops and in parks. He mingles with the elite, all while remaining the absolute coolest of them all. In the winter, he goes to Thailand. "It's the way people should live," he says. Everyone is nice and happy. Everyone does what they want: no one worries about money. He didn't mean to go to Thailand the first time, he was just escaping the winter. He road-tripped to Florida and Louisiana, and California. Then, he was in the airport thinking, "What next?" He looked for the cheapest flight leaving within a few hours: Bangkok. It changed his life. We've all met people who bring out the worst in things--the worst in others, the worst in life--Jimmie does the opposite. He brings out the best in everything. You ask him if he'll paint you a cover, and instead he makes the whole damn book better, and then turns it into music. Bruce Springsteen, Nebraska.