Buddhaland Brooklyn

Richard C. Morais. Scribner, $25 (256p) ISBN 978-1-4516-6922-0
Morais’s latest (after The Hundred-Foot Journey) follows Seido, a Japanese Buddhist priest whose attachment to ritual fortifies him against the heartbreak of his youth: days after his induction into the priesthood, at age 11, his family was killed in a fire. Years later, when he is transferred from his temple in Fukushima, Japan, to Brooklyn, he finds a congregation of American misfits starved for spiritual counsel. Jennifer, his assistant, grieves her fiancé’s death; Michael, a disturbed college student, lives in fear of his mother; and the temple’s benefactors jockey for influence and power. But by leaving the austere orderliness of Japan and entering the noisy hodgepodge of Brooklyn, Seido finds, for the first time, a community. With patience and sacrifice, he learns to communicate his faith and rediscovers it for himself. This is a breezy read that ably moves to a predictable feel-good resolution, yet Morais often indulges in purple prose and cultural caricatures. An uncomfortable propensity to exoticize Seido—whose most profound observations are expressed in Yoda-like bromides and haiku—undermines the sublimity of his spiritual awakening and his fullness as a character. Agent: Richard Pine, Inkwell Management. (July)
Reviewed on: 05/28/2012
Release date: 07/17/2012
Hardcover - 300 pages - 978-1-84688-298-2
Paperback - 244 pages - 978-1-74331-295-7
Paperback - 320 pages - 978-1-84688-241-8
Audio Product - 978-1-4551-6657-2
MP3 CD - 978-1-4551-6655-8
Paperback - 256 pages - 978-1-4516-6923-7
Compact Disc - 8 pages - 978-1-4551-6654-1
Open Ebook - 1 pages - 978-1-4551-6656-5
Ebook - 256 pages - 978-1-4516-6924-4
Compact Disc - 978-1-4551-6653-4
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