Young Adult Lit/Crit

February 26, 2008

Buddha by Osamu Tezuka

Filed under: Look What I'm Reading for Book Club! — traverse02 @ 10:06 pm

I know I discussed Tezuka’s manga, Buddha, last week for book club, but having spent a significant amount of time reading all 8 volumes (starting in September of ’07), I feel it is necessary to share with everyone that is one of the greatest books I have ever read. Tezuka relates the story of Siddartha Gautama in a spectacular way, integrating fictional characters and subplots into what can be considered a pretty accurate telling of the Buddha legend. The story begins well before Siddartha’s birth and follows a very large cast of characters as they struggle with issues of caste, revenge, war (the list goes on). We get to see Buddha develop from a young prince to an enlightened monk throughout the course of 8 dense volumes. There is action, romance, drama, comedy and plenty of opportunities for personal introspection through the trials faced by many of the characters (Buddha’s teachings actually come to life in the subplots and other tangents). Also, sprinkled throughout are  tongue-in-cheek references to modern day pop culture. This is a great read for adults and children, and students would definitely benefit from learning about an unfamiliar culture and Buddha’s many thought-provoking insights. Note: There is plenty of violence, a fair share of curse words, and some cartoon nudity, but you can’t let this detract from what is considered by many to be an epic masterpiece. Read it if you can. It’s incredible.


1 Comment »

  1. Raph,

    As I mentioned in book cirlce, I am a very big fan of Siddartha by Herman Hesse, and the Buddha’s story in general. Thank you for “enlightening” me about Tezuka’s series. I will definitely check him out.


    Comment by scrollman — February 27, 2008 @ 12:48 pm

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