Lunch with Buddhaby Roland Merullo
On the surface, LUNCH WITH BUDDHA is a story about family. Otto Ringling and his sister Cecelia could not be more different. He's just turned 50, an editor of food books at a prestigious New York publishing house, a man with a nice home in the suburbs, children he adores, and a sense of himself as being a mainstream, upper-middle-class American. Cecelia is the last thing from mainstream. For two decades she's made a living reading palms and performing past-life regressions. She believes firmly in our ability to communicate with those who have passed on.
It will turn out, though, that they have more in common than just their North Dakota roots.
In LUNCH WITH BUDDHA, when Otto faces what might be the greatest of life's difficulties, it is Cecelia who knows how to help him. As she did years earlier in this book's predecessor, BREAKFAST WITH BUDDHA, she arranges for her brother to travel with Volya Rinpoche, a famous spiritual teacher - who now also happens to be her husband.
After early chapters in which the family gathers for an important event, the novel portrays a road trip made by Otto and Rinpoche, in a rattling pickup, from Seattle to the family farm in North Dakota. Along the way the brothers-in-law have a series of experiences - some hilarious, some poignant - all aimed at bringing Otto a deeper peace of mind. They visit American landmarks; they have a variety of meals, both excellent and awful; they meet a cast of minor characters, each of whom enables Rinpoche to impart some new spiritual lesson. Their conversations range from questions about life and death to talk of history, marijuana, child-rearing, sexuality, Native Americans, and outdoor swimming.
In the end, with the help of their miraculous daughter, Shelsa, and the prodding of Otto's own almost-adult children, Rinpoche and Cecelia push this decent, middle-of-the-road American into a more profound understanding of the purpose of his life. His sense of the line between possible and impossible is altered, and the story's ending points him toward a very different way of being in this world.
- PFP Publishing
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- Product dimensions:
- 5.40(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.10(d)
Meet the Author
Roland Merullo is the critically acclaimed author of several books, both fiction and nonfiction, including the Revere Beach trilogy, Golfing with God, and Breakfast with Buddha. His essays have appeared in the New York Times, Reader's Digest, and the Chronicle of Higher Education, among other publications.
Sean Runnette, a multiple AudioFile Earphones Award winner, has also produced several Audie Award-winning audiobooks. His film and television appearances include Two If by Sea, Copland, Sex and the City, Law & Order, Third Watch, and lots and lots of commercials.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
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Interesting and enlightening delivers a great message, but I feel like it’s missing something from the first book. Maybe because Otto is already pre-disposed to Volya’s teaching that there isn’t as much growth in his character which makes the story feel incomplete. Even with this small complaint I feel that the Buddha series is a great tool to make the reader stop and think. I really enjoy the theme and the story, and the book is will written. I can’t wait to move into the last in the series.
I fell love with the characters especially Rinpoche. Wonderful Story about relationships and getting to know our inner self. Liked the humor and wisdom. I enjoyed Breakfast with Buddha so I knew this was a must read when I saw the title and author on the New releases. Roland Merullo's books are among my favorites for Reading. This book would be a good choice for a book club Discussion.
I loved breakfast and lunch and now I am waiting for dinner... great author!