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I ve been a fan of Chester Brown s for many years now and have always enjoyed what he s put out, whether it s childhood memoir I Never Liked You, The Playboy or historical narrative Louis Riel , he always produces work that s both highly readable and unlike any other graphic novel out there He is a true original So when I looked him up thinking that it s been a few years since Louis Riel, I was pleasantly surprised that he had another book completed, Paying For It, but evensurprised t I ve been a fan of Chester Brown s for many years now and have always enjoyed what he s put out, whether it s childhood memoir I Never Liked You, The Playboy or historical narrative Louis Riel , he always produces work that s both highly readable and unlike any other graphic novel out there He is a true original So when I looked him up thinking that it s been a few years since Louis Riel, I was pleasantly surprised that he had another book completed, Paying For It, but evensurprised that he d gone back to memoir and that it turns out it s about his personal history with prostitutes And that s part of why this book is so interesting it makes you learn something about yourself even if, like me, you re a grown up and think you have a fixed world view A comics artist I respect not only going with hookers but also proud of it And then I thought why is that a bad thing It s probably because part of our culture often shames those people who are famous and having affairs but oftentimes those people are married already Chester Brown isn t As I read the book I realised there is another side to prostitution It s not all street walkers and junkies, there s a civilised way of hiring a prostitute Chester Brown shows this as well as the humanity of all the prostitutes he s been with, challenging the reader s certainly mine view that all prostitutes have sad lives and that people who hire them are sad themselves Brown certainly isn t a damaged person with issues and self hatred and neither are the prostitutes in the book And why is it anybody s business besides theirs If a man wants to pay a woman to have sex with him, who is anyone to say that it s wrong The book makes the case for legalised prostitution as well as another side to this complex and intriguing person that is Chester Brown The artwork is wonderful as always and the book, despite having an agenda, is always entertaining and never overburdens the reader with the impression that the author is standing on a soapbox, droning on But if you want to readon the subject Brown has included a number of appendices at the back of the book that develops a number of arguments presented in the graphic novel Once again I ve picked up a Chester Brown book and once again I set it down, completed, a better person having read it If this is your first time experiencing this artist then my only question is what took you so long My next words would be good choice Paying for It is a fantastic and vital book which hopefully influences peoples opinions in a positive way all the while never forgetting why people pick up books to start with for a good read Having read sex worker lit previously, and having lived in San Francisco for several years with a sex worker no less and thus having been well steeped in these issues, this was an interesting read for me because it s the first account I ve read by a john Before I go further I should mention that I am absolutely in agreement with the author s premise that prostitution should be decriminalized and that in reading this I gave consideration to decriminalization versus regulation, which wasn t so Having read sex worker lit previously, and having lived in San Francisco for several years with a sex worker no less and thus having been well steeped in these issues, this was an interesting read for me because it s the first account I ve read by a john Before I go further I should mention that I am absolutely in agreement with the author s premise that prostitution should be decriminalized and that in reading this I gave consideration to decriminalization versus regulation, which wasn t something I d thought about before He argues convincingly, I think, but again, in my case he s preaching to the converted in favor of the former and against the latter So, this was in various respects an edifying read, and it was interesting to get a perspective from the other side.That said, my prevailing thought while reading this was oh, man, what a champ I m not going to pretend I wasn t grossed out when he rejected a 28 year old prostitute for being too old, and another for standing 5 3 and weighing 130 pounds, and still another for being a monster in a mini skirt But this was an interesting exercise too, because when we re talking about sex as a commodity, and taking as I take the position that there s nothing wrong with this, then doesn t he, as the consumer, have the right to reserve his money for the commodity he desires He absolutely does, but it still grossed me out In one of the appendices, a friend of his featured throughout the novel comments on what he perceives to be the author s narrow emotional range and also on his tendency to look upon himself as the Voice of Reason I think this is spot on and manifests in unappealing ways Nevertheless The unendearing aspects of our narrator notwithstanding, this was a fast, entertaining, informative read The points he raises about romantic love are pretty compelling, too whether or not you re inclined to agree with him , even though he does get pretty dogmatic there, as do his sex slave appendices in which he displays a tendency toward borderline shrill rationalizations about various potentially guilt inducing scenarios he experienced.I will say this he generally except for the irritating Voice of Reason tendency doesn t go out of his way to paint a picture of himself that comes up roses This candor is admirable.In a nutshell worth a read, and worth putting back down Stung by love, and disparaging of what he termed possessive monogamy, Brown made a decision to ditch romantic relationships, and began patronizing prostitutes instead This book is his pretty graphic, graphic memoir And, I m completely confused as to how I feel about it.On the plus side, it was an involving, and intriguing look at one man s unusual sex life If you re put off by cartoon penises pubic hair, and frank sexual discussions, it s best you avoid this book Prostitution is not som Stung by love, and disparaging of what he termed possessive monogamy, Brown made a decision to ditch romantic relationships, and began patronizing prostitutes instead This book is his pretty graphic, graphic memoir And, I m completely confused as to how I feel about it.On the plus side, it was an involving, and intriguing look at one man s unusual sex life If you re put off by cartoon penises pubic hair, and frank sexual discussions, it s best you avoid this book Prostitution is not something I spend a lot of time thinking about, so my only opinion is that I hope that sex workers are being well compensated I m not judging Brown on his opting to pay for sexbut, I do have some complaints, and since Brown was fine with smearing my lifestyle choice I ve been married for over one third of my life I m opting to punch back.First of all this is a photo of Chester Brown Okay, he s got a kind of intriguing, John Malkovich thing goin on, but hell, he s no matinee idol, and yethe s pretty damned particular about the women he screws they must be beautiful, not too old, not too heavy Then again, if he s buying a product, he s got the right to insist it be to his satisfaction But, I m thinking that if he didn t insist on beauty above all else, he d find an intelligent, interesting, and funny woman who s willing to have sex for free Where do men get this idea that no matter what they look like, they deserve goddesses Maybe I m taking this too personally, butit s just that as a lonely girl in high school who d have done almost anything to have a boyfriend, I sat home on Saturday nights because even the nerdy guys were holding out for cheerleaders.Moving onI was rather stunned by how infrequently Brown got laid I may have been stuck in the evil institution of marriage, as he puts it, for the last 28 years, but, by golly, I m pretty sure I havesex in aoh, never mind I ve already said too much.The fact is that no matter how poorly a relationship may turn out, it feels good to be in love, and it feels even better to know you are loved Brown basically proves this point himself by ending up in a monogamous relationship with a prostitute, a woman whom he admits he probably loves and yethe is still paying for it He s just pleased that it s not that possessive kind of monogamy Whatever lights your candle, I guess.As I said, this book left me feeling all kinds of befuddled I didn t love it, I didn t hate it, and I d even recommend it, with reservations In the end, like Brown admitted after some of his sexual encounters I was left feeling kind of empty My latest excursion into the ever intriguing field of graphic novels turns out to be a radical challenge to the way we think about relationships, sex, romance and the whole kit and caboodle A lot of the graphic novels I ve read are autobiographical Fun House, American Splendor, Clumsy, Maus, Persepolis and this one is wildly so as it focuses on the author s sex life But Chester Brown is no penis wielding Henry Miller or fetishistic Robert Crumb , he s a shy, bald, retiring type who works My latest excursion into the ever intriguing field of graphic novels turns out to be a radical challenge to the way we think about relationships, sex, romance and the whole kit and caboodle A lot of the graphic novels I ve read are autobiographical Fun House, American Splendor, Clumsy, Maus, Persepolis and this one is wildly so as it focuses on the author s sex life But Chester Brown is no penis wielding Henry Miller or fetishistic Robert Crumb , he s a shy, bald, retiring type who works as a cartoonist lives a very quiet life There are no dramatics here, Chester presents himself and his sex life in the flattest, most banal manner But liveliness and drama is not what this book is for It s a structured argument for a complete overhaul of human relationships The book covers Chester s life from June 1996 to January 2004 We meet Chester as his girlfriend tells him she s falling in love with someone else and would he mind if she slept with this guy Mild mannered Chester of course says that would be okay He loves Sook Yin, but he s quite aware they re not in love They ve been together a few years, but it s not like it used to be So he s not too surprised So she gets involved with this other guy, Justin Then, since it s her apartment, she asks Chester if Justin could move in she feels bad and doesn t want to ask Chester to move out She doesn t think her own sex life should make Chester homeless So Justin moves in and Chester s friends say And you re fine with this You re not angry or jealous I m feeling like my normal contented self Just keep repressing those emotions, Chester I m not repressing I didn t say I felt good about it But I don t feel bad about it Jealousy is not natural, it s learned behaviour.So they all live together in the apartment Chester likes to pontificate about life He tells his friends that romantic relationships are rubbish and he doesn t want to get into anyof them One friend says that well, at least you get sex as well as miserable times from a relationship.Chester Having a girlfriend doesn t mean you have guaranteed access to sex at any and all times Usually there s a lot of sex at the beginning of the relationship and then it drops off after time The longer a couple has been together, the less sex they re having Chester s friend Even at the end of our relationship Trish and I were still having sex all the time.Chester Then you guys were the exception That s not how it usually works Ask any married guy.Chester s friend Even if you re right, most people are having sex SOME of the time you re not having sex at all.Chester Okay, you ve got a point.You noticed it s hardly sparkling In fact this book is a sparkle free zone There s a notable absence of anything resembling humour With stilted unlifelike dialogue, plain and flat cartooning, piece by piece, Chester builds up into an extreme argument He explains how he hates the possessiveness and suspicion which attends most romantic relationships, and the emotional fallout if either is unfaithful, which he sees as almost inevitable He just can t take all the emotional hassle any and he doesn t like the social pressure to look normal by being in a romantic relationship He reads a Dan Savage sex advice book and learns about the different forms of paying for sex He wants to give it a try but he s nervous and there s a lot of shilly shallying but finally he hooks up with his first hooker He s talking to the hooker afterwards and she says that the johns have to be brave to do this stuff because they leave themselves open to being mugged there might be a man hiding in the cupboard or anything and he tells her that the hookers have to be brave because the johns might turn violent He tells his friends It felt odd but not clinical And she wasn t cold She was very friendly and nice Here s one of Chester s trains of thought which might make some people s hair stand on end I don t know if I can afford to do this on a regular basis If I went every two weeks that would be 4160 per year Every three weeks would be 17 times a year 160 times 17 is 2720 That smanageable I ll bet I annually spent about that much in relation to being Sook Yin s boyfriend And we didn t have sex anywhere near 17 times in the last year that she was my girlfriend.So you can see where this is going Anyway, after a catalogue of various experiences with various girls, he ends up sticking with one prostitute for years, and this woman ends up quitting the business, except for Chester So he still pays her, and they don t live together, but they ve grown very fond of each other Paying for sex isn t an empty experience if you re paying the right person for sex is the last line of the cartoon section of the book Then come the 50 plus pages of explanatory notes and appendices.Some further points Chester would like to make when he was born homosexuality was actually illegal and men were put in jail for being gay He believes that paying for sex will in future be seen as just as normal as we now see gay relationships and people will wonder why it used to be illegal Chester is against possessive monogamy on various grounds, mainly to do with the fact that it s not good for people s mental health He gives three scenarios and says there is no moral difference between them I wonder if you agree a a woman is thinking I don t want to have sex with this guy, but I need the money, so I will.b a second woman is thinking I don t want to have sex right now, but he s my boyfriend and I love him, so I will c a third woman is thinking I no longer feel desire for my husband, but for the sake of our marriage I ll have sex with him Many people think prostitutes are abused violently by johns and or their pimps He quotes Sheila Jeffreys book The Idea of Prostitution Prostitution is sexual abuse because prostitutes are subjected to any number of sexual acts that in any other context, acted against any other woman, would be labelled assaultive or at the very least unwanted and coercive.Chester says au contraire Having researched the matter directly and indirectly, paid sex is usually pretty much the same as unpaid sex i.e there s the equivalent amount of coertion and violence.But he does concede that many hookers do encounter violence, and says that their plight would be alleviated if prostitution was decriminalised Chester is keen to say that most of the hookers have chosen their profession, and most of the johns are nice guys like himself who have a modicum of sensitivity and don t want to make the girls do stuff they don t want to do, and never get violent It may be so, but we have no way of checking It can t be denied that prostitution exists in the margins were drugs, big illegal money and violence are constants It may be that Chester is whitewashing the whole thing and making out his experiences to becommon than they are Or maybe most prostitution happens between pleasant middle aged guys and sweet young girls who haven t got crack habits If a woman has a drug habit and being a hooker is the only way to pay for it how can you call that a choice, Chester Well, Chester has got a book called Addiction is a Choice by Dr Jeffrey Schaler, so he doesn t see it in those terms It s okay with Chester if you want to get yourself a massive coke habit Your thing, your choice One of Chester s friends made the following comment which Chester was happy to incorporate The fact is, Chester seems to have a very limited emotional range, compared to most people There does seem to be something wrong with him.Well, I liked Chester But I m not inviting him round for dinner when my mother in law is here Chester Brown s paean to the joys of prostitution hiring them, not being one I suspect if he wrote from the latter point of view this would have been a very different book is sort of an odd experience The narrative was engrossing, believe it or not, and Chester is aappealing character than he really should be, considering that he seems emotionally detached from everything and everyone in the world But Brown s philosophy feels ill thought out even though he goes on and on and ON about Chester Brown s paean to the joys of prostitution hiring them, not being one I suspect if he wrote from the latter point of view this would have been a very different book is sort of an odd experience The narrative was engrossing, believe it or not, and Chester is aappealing character than he really should be, considering that he seems emotionally detached from everything and everyone in the world But Brown s philosophy feels ill thought out even though he goes on and on and ON about it while he purports to weigh the pros and cons at great and I do mean great length, he never seems to wind up saying much He works hard to dress up his maunderings on prostitution and turn them into a Platonic disquisition on the nature of love and the morality of the sex trade, but they really don t add up to anythingthan I think prostitution is a really good idea because I enjoy hiring prostitutes because it s a lot better than romance or monogamy Well, ok, if you say so, brah Brown also elides over a lot of stuff that made me do a triple take For example, in one sequence, he s having sex with a prostitute who keeps saying Ow Ow Ow and who, according to Brown, appears to be in pain She tells him that he isn t hurting her, but it s obvious that he is He thinks to himself, It s kind of a turn on to me that she s in pain, but still, I think I ll cut this session short or words to that effect This experience gives him no pause whatsoever, even though it suggests that she might be unwilling or exploited, or both Other than noting that her pain is turning him on, though blecch , he doesn t appear to give it a second thought, other than to note that she probably isn t involved in human trafficking because, um, well, it s not clear why Maybe because her accent is Canadian And whether he means to or not, Brown dehumanizes the prostitutes he portrays, as he never shows their faces or any of their physical features The reader sees them mostly from behind, and he draws them all the same thin with long dark hair Brown claims that he used this technique to protect the women s privacy Yeah, right because Brown s artistic technique has such verisimilitude Give me a break Brown s photo is in the back of the book, and I would never in a million years have recognized him if I had only seen his own drawings of himself he draws himself as a generic dude with an oval head and glasses So he couldn t have drawn the women in a similarly generic way Anyone who s read Scott McCloud s Understanding Comics is going to see Brown s explanation for the rationalization really is.Brown also spends the better part of the story deriding romantic love and monogamy, dismissing them as, among other things, possessive love Fine that s not necessarily an indefensible position But by the end of the book, he s involved in you guessed it a monogamous relationship with one of the women he hired He indulges in another paragraphs long expostulation to explain this fact away something about how he s not a jealous person so it s different when he does it but his handwaving doesn t do much to obviate the fact that he s basically just revealed that the entire book isor less an exercise in hypocrisy.And finally, anyone who says he has respect and affection for Dave Sim has just lost me entirely So, three stars because I was riveted in the way I d be riveted by a cobra about to strike, but I ll admit I kind of hate myself for it Brown s Paying for It is a defense of prostitution beautifully and meticulously designed It is a work of scholarship valued in several academic disciplines as a serious contribution to the study of sex work 1 3 of the book is handwritten endnotes, reminiscent to me of Alan Moore s From Hell, his fictional theory of the killing of prostitutes in London by Jack the Ripper, which similarly features dozens of pages of notes From Hell involved serious work of research, as surely has Paying For I Brown s Paying for It is a defense of prostitution beautifully and meticulously designed It is a work of scholarship valued in several academic disciplines as a serious contribution to the study of sex work 1 3 of the book is handwritten endnotes, reminiscent to me of Alan Moore s From Hell, his fictional theory of the killing of prostitutes in London by Jack the Ripper, which similarly features dozens of pages of notes From Hell involved serious work of research, as surely has Paying For It Paying for It is also a memoir, a careful documentation of every prostitute Brown paid to have sex with over a several years period of time It s not a work of pornography, though it does regularly depict cartoon pictures of himself having sex with these women So there s maybe for many the ick factor, in spite of Brown s entirely serious approach to the subject And it s obviously controversial, in the stance it takes I read it in 2014, and liked it very much, though I stopped short of writing a review at that time, thinking even defending it on any level would get me in trouble with Goodreads friends But I found it fascinating I don t mostly agree with Brown, finally, but a very very fine artist and scholar did this work Brown s basic view about the contrast between prostitution to marriage is that he finds the formerhonest and respectful of women You see how he takes a minority view here on the subject, of course, but he is not the only person who has taken that view in the history of feminism He s also skeptical of the uses of romance, which seems to him largely a waste of time for most people One of the most interesting aspects of Brown s story happens later somewhat spoiler alert , when we see Brown s struggle about sexuality and intimacy sort of falls apart, as he grows closer and closer to one particular woman whose services he pays for, and she in turn also grows closer to him That s maybe all I ll say about that here But it s not a complete reversal of his view, just a complication It just becomes a somewhat deeper meditation on the relationship between sexuality and intimacy.Another interesting thing that happens in the process of research, for Brown, is that he becomes an advocate for the dignity and respect of sex workers, especially those who seem to have chosen this profession as a means of viable income A comic book artist, an autobiographical comics guy, one who happens to have sex with prostitutes as millions do daily the world over, becomes politicized in the process, and informed as he learns about the issues involved, and finally, an advocate He now is part of the process of advocating for the legalization of prostitution I write this on the occasion of buying from Brown last night his second defense of prostitution, Mary Wept Over the Feet of Jesus, at CAKE, an alternative comics gathering here in Chicago, where I stood in line with as it turns out several women all buying Paying for it or Mary, his newest book, all talking with him admiringly, it seemed to me I heard each of these women talk with Brown, speaking supportively of his work on the subject I just think of it as another job, one woman said I think it should be legalized, another woman said It s just another form of oppression, to throw these girls in jail I agree with that, especially since all the johns typically go free, but in general I think the media film has done a disservice to victims of sex trafficking in the process of somewhat romanticizing prostitution as a profession That narrative seems to be changing on a daily basis, now, though, as sex trafficking is now a regular topic in the news I didn t really talk to Brown but I thought, leaving him I wish I could interview the dude At the show I also picked up Brown s friend Joe Matt s spoof of Paying for It, entitled Paid for It and supposedly authored by Chesty Matt, which uses actual panels from Paying for It but substitutes commentary dialogue from the perspective of a fictional Brown who has decided to himself become a prostitute It s both very funny and also insightful and I recommend it I guess because few of you will ever read that book I will risk a spoiler Matt s punchline joke here is that Brown falls in love with one of his customers and accepts a proposal to marriage, enthusiastically This is a joke, but in the light of what I wrote about above re Brown s becoming intimate with one of his prostitutes, it s not such a stretch,maybe Reminds me of Shaw s Pygmalion Love conquers all, after all, you old curmudgeon, Brown This Canadian dude wrote and illustrated about his journey with love and sex, how he gave up on and then eschewed romantic love and turned to prostitutes for sex while receiving normal love and acceptance from friends and family He eventually comes back around to considering the possible link between love and sex after having been a john for several years.It s an interesting perspective, that of a prostitute s client I could relate to some of his thoughts romance grosses me out and I sus This Canadian dude wrote and illustrated about his journey with love and sex, how he gave up on and then eschewed romantic love and turned to prostitutes for sex while receiving normal love and acceptance from friends and family He eventually comes back around to considering the possible link between love and sex after having been a john for several years.It s an interesting perspective, that of a prostitute s client I could relate to some of his thoughts romance grosses me out and I suspect the whole together forever thing is a hoax or maybe just antiquated I agree with him when he says you can t expect to get so much fulfillment from just one person and you can get the same kind of validation but without the possessive nature from your friends and maybe your family There were some points that I d argue his idea that prostitution is like paid dating, that it s a form of person to person relationship I see it as a business not unlike personal chefs, house cleaners, massage therapists, even doctors and food servers The business is based on personal contact as a service It sounds like this is an issue he discusses with his friends and some of them also see prostitution as a business which is why their opinions on the subject differ from his Like his friends, I don t have any personal experience with prostitution This guy does, but I felt that actually makes himbiased because he can only look at the situation from the point of view of an end user, as the customer It sounds like he s giventhought to the service provided than to the industry, as a whole Which is fine, it s not like there s a right or wrong way to look at this, but it did grate a little.I was fascinated by the story There s some empowerment going on but there s also some mansplaining in as much as only HE understands love and everyone else is being fooled No, he doesn t say that outright but it sure does come across that way, at least in this reader s mind, when he talks about the subject This feels like honest account but also you gotta wonder if this guy is something of a Spock because he s so logical and unemotional He s also potentially blindsided by his arrogance in that he seems to have taken the information his servicers gave him at face value because of course they open up to him and tell him their life stories, all trusting and stuff He s that one special guy, the escort whisperer There s no way any of them have created a backstory to tell customers who ask, right The illustrations are fine They re primarily centered on him and if you re not a fan of the gaunt, balding guy who is naked for half the book, then the art isn t going to appeal Also, the lesson here, despite the disclaimer, is that all prostitutes are the same and interchangeable But the pictures got the point across, for the most part, and cartoon sex is always entertaining As a woman, I loved this book, and as a libertarian, I loved it evenChester Brown did a great job writing the appendices section, however, it kind of saddens me to know that he probably felt like he needed to write it in such great detail with cartoons to help better explain his point to people who probably don t agree with him, or for those who just don t have a real educated opinion on the subject of prostitution It was just obvious that he wanted to cover all his bases and make sure As a woman, I loved this book, and as a libertarian, I loved it evenChester Brown did a great job writing the appendices section, however, it kind of saddens me to know that he probably felt like he needed to write it in such great detail with cartoons to help better explain his point to people who probably don t agree with him, or for those who just don t have a real educated opinion on the subject of prostitution It was just obvious that he wanted to cover all his bases and make sure that those who were quick to criticize him understood his logical point of view I suppose if someone wanted to get to know me better and what I meant by saying I m a libertarian , I would have them read this book Like my husband for example, who thinks prostitution is wrong lol This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here 29 May 2011 Meat Ravioli 10 not so tasty, overcooked28 May 2011 Hamburger Fries 15 chewy, medium, good value27 May 2011 Lamb dish Ethiopian 17 wonderful, messyI could go on, but I don t want to bore you with the spare details of what I had for dinner every night last week Chester Brown on the other hand would love to do this.Case in point, Chester Brown s new memoir is littlethan an itemized receipt containing the metadata surrounding his sex life over the last decade.We only 29 May 2011 Meat Ravioli 10 not so tasty, overcooked28 May 2011 Hamburger Fries 15 chewy, medium, good value27 May 2011 Lamb dish Ethiopian 17 wonderful, messyI could go on, but I don t want to bore you with the spare details of what I had for dinner every night last week Chester Brown on the other hand would love to do this.Case in point, Chester Brown s new memoir is littlethan an itemized receipt containing the metadata surrounding his sex life over the last decade.We only get the dates, prices, times, a panel or two of gyrating, and Chester s laconic two line assessment of the woman and the sex He wants to protect the identity of the prostitutes by omitting their personal details and changing the names they work under to other innocuous names That is thoughtful He also obscures their faces, putting word balloons over them or only drawing the women from behind They could be anybody, just some TA, some tail he bought for 120 hr Also, his drawing style is black and white So all the women look like caucasian brunettes, which Brown acknowledges is just an effect of his style and not actually true By expunging all the details, the book is littlethan a list of services that have been consumed There is very little interaction aside from the transactions as they methodically happen I don t think there is muchthan this Though Chester feels he has gotten to know the ladies by asking them about their childhoods, boyfriends, families and hobbies all of which are omitted Sure, one might get to know a barista and even trade anecdotes, but one still leaves after getting a coffee Chester is making these transactionsthan they are in an effort to normalize them The problem from a dramatic point of view is that as far as dramatic interactions go, this situation is deadly boring Two people enter a room, one gets cash, they pound away, Chester gives anstyle review of the performance, checks the web for another hooker, repeats this activity for 200 pages, only breaking the tedium by using friends as strawmen in one sided conversations about the ethics of prostitution in which Chester always wins as the most reasonable voice The drama is too spare and the arguments are stacked in Chester s favor And Chester is somewhat creepy His friends mention that he is robotic At the beginning of the volume, his former girlfriend, actress and personality Sook yin Lee, edges him out of their shared house by degrees over several months Can I date other people Can the guy stay over This is my new boyfriend nowChester, our relationship is kind of finished Can you move out and he accepts it all with zero negative feelings, and rationalizes his overly passive acceptance as that of a Buddhist monk Chester may, as his friend Seth surmised, have a narrow emotional range, but his passive acceptance of getting dumped and then curbed by degrees cannot be spun delicately Chester acted like a doormat He could have protested Maybe that would have ignited some passion back into their relationship Chester tries to head this argument off by stating he has gone beyond romantic love and he knew their relationship was over for months before it ended Of course, he only reaches such realizations after getting rather callously and slowly dumped Though being Canadian, Sook yin apologizes many times at each stage And zero negative feelings Feh, even buddhist monks have bad days Chester demonstrates pure good will after losing his long term girlfriend and place with nada angst This may have been close to the truth, but it does not ring true, and sounds like self delusion Like law students who say they LOVE THE LAW, or mathematicians who LOVE DIFFERENTIAL EQUATIONS The best students have some tact and say, the law math is my line It s what I do best or No hard feelings, Sook instead of being energized by a situation that 99% of the population finds uncomfortable The subjective truth may exist i.e the law, math, and getting dumped are AWESOME and SOOO FUN , but the speaker of such sentiments either seems like an oddball, a liar, or just stokes malice and envy in others for their talent in law, math, or happily getting dumped The spoken sentiment points to either a lack of social grace or a backhanded compliment at oneself at the expense of others.Finally in regards to Sook Yin, Brown depicts her high cheekbones as rather skeletal There might be some lingering bitterness there She does have high cheekbones, but in some panels she s a cross between Pocahontas and Skeletor however, this could be the effect of his spare drawing style.After the breakup, Chester rationalizes that he is beyond romantic love, relational games, and interactions He d like his sextransactional But, by the end of the story, he is in a monogamous relationship with a prostitute that only he pays for, and they approximate a traditional relationship, coming full circle and seemingly are like any other couple If you are beyond romantic love, Chester Brown, why is your latest relationship 90% similar to romantic love He makes the point that unpaid sex and paid sex and romantic love can be very similar, but why the long way around Why does one force the issue that if the paid and unpaid are morally the same, then they are nearly the same in other senses as well Chester sees nothing immoral about paying for sex But he surfs for pros using internet cafes, since he ostensibly doesn t own a computer This is problematic Think whatever you want about prostitution, and your sense of sexual norms, but have respect for a public space, particularly one in which people of all ages use I hope none of those spaces were libraries I am not for censorship, but having other people potentially stumble upon Chester selecting a prostitute is not dignified public behavior as it surprises people by making them party to the beginning of a sexual transaction that they have not previously consented to This is a long winded way of suggesting Chester Brown buy himself a laptop.I appreciate that he is attempting to normalize a behavior that has been with mankind a longtime, but I can do without Chester Brown s fallacious rationalizations The ladies really like me because they open up to me It s not the money, it s that I m a nice guy have moneyProstitution is just paid dating It is the same as not having to pay for sexI can surf for hookers and rate them in public spaces since my sexual tastes are so vanilla.On the other hand, Chester Brown puts his rationalizations down on paper and invites his friends to change or comment on his depictions of them in the book His warts and all memoir is rather refreshing in that he bares everything for an ideal that he seeks, making prostitution a less furtive, safer activity That he opens up, unabashedly laying everything on the line, isthan most people ever do in memoirs Aside from the arguments he has with his friends, Chester impartially depicts himself in an effort to vindicate the act of paying for sex, not seeking absolution for himself The man has balls which he also carefully depicts Too bad the exercise is somewhat solipsistic and uninteresting.EDIT A further problem, Chester Brown sidesteps addressing the related subject of human trafficking One of his friends raises the argument, but since data on human trafficking is difficult to come by and stories are anecdotal, Chester imagines all prostitutes have libertarian free will and freely choose their profession However, not all prostitutes freely and reasonably chose their profession Trafficking does occur, and he avoids discussing it `DOWNLOAD E-PUB ↠ Paying for It ⇵ A CONTEMPORARY DEFENSE OF THE WORLD S OLDEST PROFESSIONChester Brown has never shied away from tackling controversial subjects in his work In hisbook, The Playboy, he explored his personal history with pornography His bestsellinggraphic novel, Louis Riel, was a biographical examination of an extreme political figure The book won wide acclaim and cemented Brown s reputation as a true innovator Paying for It is a natural progression for Brown as it combines the personal and sexual aspects of his autobiographical work with the polemical drive of Louis Riel Brown calmly lays out the facts of how he became not only a willing participant in but a vocal proponent of one of the world s most hot button topics prostitution While this may appear overly sensational and just plain implausible to some, Brown s story stands for itself Paying for It offers an entirely contemporary exploration of sex work from the timid john who rides his bike to his escorts, wonders how to tip so as not to offend, and reads Dan Savage for advice, to the modern day transactions complete with online reviews, seemingly willing participants, and clean apartments devoid of clich d street corners, drugs, or pimpsComplete with a surprise ending, Paying for It provides endless debate and conversation about sex work and will be the most talkedabout graphic novel of