Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

A Zen Romance: One Woman's Adventures in a Monastery Paperback – September, 1997


See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Paperback, September, 1997
"Please retry"
$26.60 $0.01
Best%20Books%20of%202014
NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Holiday Deals in Books
Holiday Deals in Books
Find deals for every reader in the Holiday Deals in Books store, featuring savings of up to 50% on cookbooks, children's books, literature & fiction, and more.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 258 pages
  • Publisher: Kodansha International (JPN); New edition edition (September 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 4770021771
  • ISBN-13: 978-4770021779
  • Product Dimensions: 5 x 0.8 x 7.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,102,397 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

When Deborah Boehm struck out for Kyoto as an exchange student in the 1960s, she often told many of her friends who practiced the "dull and pretentious" ways of Zen Buddhism that she hoped to "get away from Zen." Upon her arrival in Japan, however, she found herself living in a room on the grounds of an ancient Zen monastery. While she at first expresses mild disappointment at finding herself among Zen monks, she is soon won over to their ways, and they to hers, through participation in regular study and communal meals with the monks. Boehm so endears herself to the monks that she is invited to be the first foreigner to participate in the O-Zesshin, a week of intensive meditation. Yet, Boehm is taken with more than the monk's religious ways; she is also attracted sexually to one of the monks, and the book opens with one of her erotic dreams about this teacher. While the asceticism of Zen generally excludes the passion of sex, Boehm transforms her erotic desire into a passionate prose that glorifies the spiritual dimensions of Zen Buddhism. Boehm's memoir is a rich combination of the eroticism of the Thousand and One Nights and the spiritual revelation of a Zen koan.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

During the pseudospiritual sixties, Boehm escaped to Japan as an exchange student to "get away from Zen," only to find herself living next door to a Buddhist monastery. Her memoir is, in part, an insider's delightful view of an American observing monks observing an American. The account is an amalgam of humor and realism set in tautly poetic style as Boehm is assimilated into every Japanese genre from art to Zen. She tries temple dancing, inadvertently dresses like a courtesan, and returns from a week-long zazen (retreat to meditate) to find her three kittens accidentally baked on an incubating heat tray. During her adventures, Boehm finds time to fall for the irresistibly handsome Yukio, whose mother threatens to disown the future veterinarian if he continues to woo this American. Boehm returned to the U.S. with the knowledge that enlightenment usually strikes outside the meditation hall through living, thinking, and making mistakes. She had tried to fit a "rational Occidental mind" into an "intuitive Oriental discipline" and retains admiration and gratitude for the experience. Patricia Hassler --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

5.0 out of 5 stars
5 star
3
4 star
0
3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
0
See all 3 customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By DW on November 27, 2010
Verified Purchase
I loved A Zen Romance. It is the true story of a young woman's years in Japan in the sixties and her experiences in all facets of the world she encountered - religions, monasteries, men, food and many wise and not so wise, fascinating characters. Her relationship with the men in the Zen monastery she lived near is a great story in itself. Another story is that throughout she was a "militant virgin." What I especially loved was that she kept her perspective and especially her sense of humor. Everyone should read this book. I can't recommend it highly enough.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 8, 2001
Far from being a self-aggrandizing memoir, a travelogue or a spiritual manual, this book reads like a rich, delicious novel. Sandra Boliver Boehm writes with a sense of humor about her college-age self, and with meticulous and sensual detail about her experiences in Japan in the 1970's. Her descriptions of the food she ate are enough to make a reader crave sushi every night. This is a phenominal coming-of-age tale, and a must for any intelligent young woman with a lust for adventure.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
4 of 6 people found the following review helpful By petersky@halcyon.com on May 30, 1998
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. I have strong ambivalencies about the time I spent living in Japan, but reading this book evoked such strong, nostalgic images of all that is right and true about Japanese culture that I was ready to hop the next plane. I only wish that I had had her apparently excellent Japanese language skills, the more romantic locale of Kyoto over the more industrial Kobe where I lived, and the better luck with Japanese men!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again