Thursday, October 27, 2022

Hidden Buddha: Lama Rinzen in the Hungry Ghost Realm Book Review & Book Tour Giveaway

This morning, I have a unique mystery novel in our book review spotlight.  Check out Hidden Buddha:  Lama Rinzen in the Hungry Ghost Realm, learn about author Jim Ringel, read my thoughts on the book & enter for a chance to win a prize in the book tour giveaway at the end of this post!

​Book Title:  Hidden Buddha: Lama Rinzen in the Hungry Ghost Realm by Jim Ringel
Category:  Adult Fiction (18+),  298 pages
GenreMystery, Literary 
Publisher:  Black Bee Publishing 
Release date:  October 2022
Content Rating:  PG+M due a section focusing on a woman's miscarriage of her fetus.

Between classic scenes of deduction, complex layers of truth and reality, and skillful red herrings, Ringel freshens up the tropes of mysteries. BookLife Reviews (Editor’s Pick)

Ringel’s prose creates a delightfully unnerving atmosphere… readers are likely to find themselves carried along by the mood and mystery alone.   - Kirkus Reviews
… a most enjoyable and engaging mystery. I urge you to take this wild adventure with the seductive lama. Roshi Gerry Shishin Wick, Spiritual Director, Great Mountain Zen Center, Berthoud, CO

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About the Book

In Hidden Buddha Lama Rinzen finds herself reborn as a doctor into the Hungry Ghost Realm in a haunted hospital on Colorado’s eastern plains.

It’s an unfriendly place. The patients do not respect her, the staff ignores her, and there’s rumors of ghosts in the hospital.

Rinzen is afraid of ghosts. She is not even sure they truly exist. Instead she focuses on learning the Hungry Ghost Realm’s lesson about what the Buddha means when he talks about emptiness. If she can only learn that she will escape the hospital and progress along her path to enlightenment.

But nine-year-old patient Claudia says the ghosts are real, and that they are here to trap Rinzen so she might never learn and never escape the hospital. Not in this lifetime, and not in any future lifetimes either.

How can the lama learn without seeing the things she denies?

​Maybe that’s what the Buddha means when he talks about emptiness. These little bits of ourselves we keep suppressed and hidden and never admit to? 
My Review

Lama Rinzen in the Hungry Ghost Realm Continues the Lama Rinzen Mysteries. While the novel can certainly be read as a stand-alone novel, I expect readers would feel a little more connected to Lama Rinzen if the stories were read in order. I didn't read the first book in the series, and it took a bit of time for me to settle into the Buddhist elements central to the novel--and even longer to develop much understanding of Lama Rinzen. Of course, I also need to familiarize myself with Buddhism, the Realms of Existence, and the Religion's beliefs. I am not sure if the first novel gives a lot of extra background or additional information to the series and Lama Rinzen's tests toward enlightenment--but this one sort of drops readers with Lama Rinzen in her latest mysterious quest. Having said that, the author created such a darkly mysterious and engaging setting and storyline that I did a little general outside reading into some aspects of Buddhism to better connect with the main character.


​Lama Rinzen in the Hungry Ghost Realm Holds Many Mysteries. The setting of this novel was perfect for allowing our main character the opportunity to learn her life lesson and solve mysterious happenings through the events at play and her supporting characters. From the rationale behind the patients selected to remain at the hospital during the snowstorm evacuation to more philosophical looks at personalities and traits creating the mysteries (and resolutions) for Lama Rinzen to organize in her effort to find her true self and "pass" the Hungry Ghost Realm. 

Would I recommend ​Lama Rinzen in the Hungry Ghost Realm by Jim Ringel? This novel is a unique mystery, perfect for those enjoying darker, more profound stories leaning almost toward horror in the genre through the setting--yet allowing characters the opportunity to learn and seek more than the obvious in a situation. This story is an interesting novel if you enjoy a unique storyline with mysterious characters and twists that serve deeper purposes. I would recommend reading the series in order so that you don't feel as "dropped into" Lama Rinzen's journey. I will look for future books from this series as it interested me in the Realms of Existence and seeing the author create his main character's journey within them.


Buy the Book
Amazon ~ Barnes & Noble
BAM indiebound 
and indie bookstores everywhere
​add to goodreads

Meet the Author

Jim Ringel is an unconventional Buddhist who writes the Lama Rinzen mysteries as part of his own spiritual path.

Each book in the series finds the lama reborn into one of the six Buddhist Realms on a search for deeper understanding along the path toward Nirvana.

Jim practices Zen, skis, hikes, bikes, and visits brew pubs throughout Colorado seeking the Buddha in everyday life.

connect with the author: website ~ facebook ~ bookbub ~ goodreads
Follow the Book Tour
Enter the Giveaway

HIDDEN BUDDHA Book Tour Giveaway


  1. Hidden Buddha sounds like a great book, thanks for sharing it with me!

    Thanks, Book Corner News and Reviews, for sharing your review!

    Have a sunshiny day!

  2. Thanks for sharing your review, I would enjoy reading this