but I was happy to start Buddha Boy, after my great experience with Kissing the Bee. This is a bullying story, but not just-another-bullying-story. I would be interested to see what guys and gals Justin and Jinsen's age would think of this book, because I don't want to presume that Koja gets it right so well, but as far as I can remember back (and that is a LOT of years back) it seems that this book is just spot on in depicting how kids this age really feel. The story is told from the POV of Justin. A middle-of-the-road kid, who just goes along to get along. When he meets Jinsen, he starts thinking about if going along to get along is what he wants to do anymore. Does he want to put himself out there? Defend the strange kid who doesn't fight back no matter how much they pick on him. I think Koja does an excellent job. I would just love to know if kids that age agree.
The book really isn't about Buddhism. But it is interesting that Jinsen's interest in Buddhism has worked for him and at the same time, led Justin to ask his father about faith, asking him to take him to church when their visiting time comes and to visit a temple, too. I wonder if teens explore faith this way? I think it was really cool of the dad to say, "Yes, you can come to church with me!" and also, "Yes, we can visit a Buddhist temple, you want!" That kind of openness allows for discussion, prayer, meditation and possibility.
What's Going On Here?
There are SO MANY wonderful book review blogs out there and I can't compete with them, that is for sure. So this is not a book review blog. This is just a way for me to organize what I have read so that I can be better at matching the right book to the right person. The blog title comes from the brilliant mind of the most talented woman who ever lived, Ms. Judy Garland. The full quote is, "Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of someone else." That is what I hope to do here and in ever aspect of my life.