Book Notes

Buddha or Bust by Perry Garfinkel

Take Buddha to the beach

Posted August 3, 2006

Perry Garfinkel of West Tisbury will speak about his just published book, "Buddha or Bust: In Search of Truth, Meaning, Happiness and the Man Who Found Them All" (Harmony Books), at Island bookstores and libraries between August 9 to 16.

The book, which expands on a National Geographic article he wrote for the December 2005 issue, examines why Buddhism has grown in popularity in the West. It also tracks Buddhism old and new across nine countries. In his global circumnavigation, he interviewed everyone from the Dalai Lama (who provided a generous book jacket recommendation) to "the world's first Buddhist stand-up" in Berkeley, Calif.

A recent Boston Globe review called it "fast enough for the beach yet dense enough for the scholar's library... As John McPhee and Paul Theroux offer lush descriptions of physical landscapes in their works, Garfinkel surveys the internal world with equal scrutiny." The book appeared on the LA Times bestseller list for the first time on July 23, ranked 10th.

Meet author Perry Garfinkel, Wednesday, August 9, 7:30 pm, Bunch of Grapes Bookstore, Main Street, Vineyard Haven; Thursday, August 10, 5 pm, Chilmark library, South Road; Saturday, August 12, 4 pm, Vineyard Haven library, Main Street; Wednesday, August 16, 4 pm, Edgartown library, N. Water Street.