From Publishers Weekly
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A lot of people talk about becoming a real live ninja and don't do a thing. That's bullcrap. But this guy actually did it! In conclusion, Matthew Polly is the complete opposite of a wimpy baby. -- Robert Hamburger, author of REAL Ultimate Power: The Official Ninja Book
A nicely developed narrative. -- Kirkus
A sensibility more alien to my own than Matthew Polly's is hard to imagine. I consider foreign cultures to be really...foreign. I don't spiritually quest; I go to church. As for the martial arts, I own a gun. But I loved American Shaolin. Reading it was like being abducted by an alien-a brilliant, funny, and hospitable alien who took me to another universe of sensibility. There I enjoyed myself immensely. -- P.J. O'Rourke
Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Jet Li and David Carradine all played Shaolin Monks, but Matthew Polly actually lived it. In American Shaolin, he enters China's most famous temple, the birthplace of zen and martial arts, and uncovers unique insights on religion, sex, politics, and kicking butt-a revealing confession of monastic life in modern China. -- Gene Ching, Kung Fu Tai Chi Magazine
I picked up American Shaolin and read it straight through. It is first rate. Polly's book tells more about what's going on in China and has more insights into the real China than anything in recent years. It is a wonderful true-life story with profound, behind-the-headlines observations about Chinese life. A tip of the Stetson to Matthew Polly. -- Dan Rather
Re-enter the dragon-Matthew Polly's gerbil style will totally defeat your dragon style! Just call him a hard-boiled egg: white on the outside, yellow on the inside. The most Asian of Kansans will Wu-Tang you into the apocalypse. -- Mark Oppenheimer, author of Thirteen and a Day