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Breakfast with Buddha : a novel
Roland Merullo
Adult Fiction MERULLO

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Merullo, author of the Revere Beach series and Golfing with God, delivers a comic but winningly spiritual road-trip novel. Otto Ringling is a food-book editor and a happily married father of two living in a tony New York suburb. After Otto's North Dakota parents are killed in a car crash, he plans to drive his ebulliently New Age sister, Cecilia, back home to sell the family farm. But when Otto arrives to pick up Cecilia in Paterson, N.J. (where she does tarot readings and past-life regressions), she declares her intention to give her half of the farm to her guru, Volvo Rinpoche, who will set up a retreat there. Cecilia asks Otto to take Rinpoche to North Dakota instead; after a fit of skeptical rage in which he rails internally against his sister's gullibility, he accepts, and the novel is off and running. Merullo takes the reader through the small towns and byways of Midwestern America, which look unexpectedly alluring through Rinpoche's eyes. Well-fed Western secularist Otto is only half-aware that his life might need fixing, and his slow discovery of Rinpoche's nature, and his own, make for a satisfying read. A set piece of Otto's chaotic first meditation session is notably hilarious, and the whole book is breezy and affecting. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Raised in the North Dakota farmlands and now living in a solidly upper-middle-class suburb in New York, Otto Ringling has worked hard to achieve success. Despite work he enjoys, a loving family, the quintessential home, and memorable family vacations, he still senses something absent from his life. After the sudden death of his parents, Otto's plan to drive his sister Cecelia back to the family farm takes an unexpected turn. To his surprise, Otto finds himself chauffeuring not his sister but her spiritual teacher, Volya Rinpoche, a Mongolian monk. With the enigmatic Rinpoche riding shotgun, Otto takes the scenic route through New Jersey and on to North Dakota. Otto's seemingly solid beliefs are challenged as he tries to explain himself and the world he lives in to Rinpoche. Especially well written, Merullo's second visionary novel (after Golfing with God) captures the spiritual struggle for true belief and inner peace with wit, clarity, and subtle reality. Warmly recommended for popular fiction collections.-Joy St. John, Henderson Dist. P.L., NV (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Otto Ringling
Straightlaced; publishing executive; parents were killed recently in a car accident; wants to sell the family farm; takes a road trip with a Mongolian moknk.

Cecilia Ringling
Otto's sister; does tarot readings; wants to turn her parents' farm into a retreat; convinces her brother to take her guru for sa road trip through the Midwest.

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