Matthew Polly American Shaolin

Level – Upper – Intermediate

Plot – Growing up a 90-pound weakling tormented by bullies in the schoolyards of Kansas, young Matthew Polly dreamed of one day journeying to the Shaolin Temple in China to become the toughest fighter in the world, like Caine in his favorite 1970s TV series, Kung Fu. While in college, Matthew decided the time had come to pursue this quixotic dream before it was too late. Much to the dismay of his parents, he dropped out of Princeton to spend two years training with the legendary sect of monks who invented kung fu and Zen Buddhism.

American Shaolin: Flying Kicks, Buddhist Monks, and the Legend of Iron Crotch: An Odyssey in the New China by Matthew Polly