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VOYARaushenbush, known as Pastor Paul on Beliefnet.com where he responds to many questions concerning religion and spirituality, presents advice, information, interesting quotations, suggested activities, and follow-up resources. He focuses on what he calls "the five most influential world religions"-Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, and Judaism-but he also provides more limited information about faiths such as Baha'i, Zoroastrianism, and Wicca. Approached from different ways, each religion is presented through facts and statistics, a teen practitioner's view, and how the particular religion responds to various topics (masturbation, vegetarianism, homosexuality, interfaith dating, and much more). There is a very helpful section that introduces the five major religions to outsiders making contact, providing basic vocabulary, how to visit places of worship, what to wear, what takes place, major observances, and basic tenets. The resource section includes Web sites, movies, and music. The author makes every effort to create a teen-centered book. Some quotations are from celebrities such as Moby, Bono, Christy Turlington, and Hakeem Olajuwon. The topics of the questions (all written by very literate teens) are of major interest to teens, and several quizzes bring out important points. The variety of the material and the layout will also appeal to teens, and the table of contents is very detailed and useful, apparently substituting for an index. One criticism-there are Faithfacts scattered throughout the book with no sources listed, making follow-up difficult. The book is not set up as a reference guide to faiths, but it is very helpful for teens eager to understand their own and otherreligions. VOYA CODES: 4Q 2P M J S (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; For the YA with a special interest in the subject; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9; Senior High, defined as grades 10 to 12). 2004, HCI Teens, 235p., Trade pb. Ages 11 to 18.
—Susan H. Levine