Diary of a Zen Nun

Nan Shin, Author, Peter Watson, Illustrator Dutton Books $15.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-525-24408-0
A Zen nun cruising along the outskirts of Paris in a Honda at 110 mph? The expatriate Midwesterner author is no ordinary Zen nun, and her unusual journal, crafted in musical, finely controlled prose, is really several books in one: an account of her triumph over ovarian cancer, purportedly achieved with the aid of Zen discipline; a nature diary full of precise details about birds, plants, fish and insects; a memoir of globe-trotting with her Japanese Zen master. While the parts don't always mesh and the musing tends to become tedious, the author's wry observations of people, places and daily events read like Zen parables on the need to ""solve the problem of your own life and death'' and the futility of forcing things. Watson's drawings, interwoven with the text, add personal charm; shorter chapters are wrapped around illustrations and arranged like prose poems to good effect. (May 15)
Reviewed on: 05/01/1986
Release date: 05/01/1986
Paperback - 978-0-525-48372-4
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