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The Last Guru

4.02  ·  Rating details ·  206 ratings  ·  15 reviews
One harmless bet on a horse race starts a chain of events that turns a 12-year-old into one of the world's richest people and a spiritual guru. ...more
Hardcover, 127 pages
Published 1978 by Dodd, Mead
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Average rating 4.02  · 
Rating details
 ·  206 ratings  ·  15 reviews

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May 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing
One of my all time favorite books, I don't know how many times I've read it! There's so much going on here, from people's obsession with fame and fortune, to religious fads, to . . . just everything. Interestingly, though, my kids didn't find this as funny as LIZARD MUSIC, though personally I have always preferred it to that book. I wonder if they're just a little young, and don't get what's going on? ...more
Nov 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
As I may have previously mentioned, I love Daniel Pinkwater. This book is no exception. While it is clearly a product of its time, it still weaves an entertaining tale of guru-ism as a business, entangled with fast food, horse racing, childhood, and fabulous wealth. If you are a Pinkwater fan, read it.
Ashutosh Sahu
Feb 21, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book really deserves ten stars. After reading it, you or your child will understand the folly of both money and new-wave fad religion. It is also one of the few books that openly acknowledges Pinkwaters' deep interest in Buddhism and New Age, which are running themes throughout many of his books. ...more
Mar 23, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
amazingly ridiculous book that is great for anyone who wants a silly, relaxing story, about a teen boy who becomes a millionaire in the most silly way!
Steve Miller
May 20, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first book from my childhood that I chose to read myself and the first one (along with A House With A Clock in It's Walls) that I truly enjoyed. Date read is approximate. ...more
Oct 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Read this little children's book today. I stumbled on it because I am working on a text with the same title, and this book is a great addition to the theme. It's really rather funny, a bit of a critique to modern idealisation of eastern meditation practices.

And here's my text that I was writing when I stumbled on this book in my search for more info on the concept "last guru".
Xander Amiel
The book that I just finished is called The Last Guru by Daniel M. Pinkwater. It started off talking about Harold, and his Uncle Roy are like best friends. Uncle Roy is that kind of guy who spends money on horse races and at casinos. “It is mostly about a wish-fulfillment fantasy in which Harold Blatz, an otherwise ordinary boy who likes to build model boats and who generally keeps to himself, has the ability to quickly earn huge amounts money.” It takes money to make money, and at first he must ...more
Robert Weinstein
Apr 21, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My mother bought me a copy of this book when I was a kid. I read the first third of the book before misplacing it in the mess that was my bedroom. The book always stayed in my mind, partly because the kid in the book begins amassing his fortune by betting on a horse.

I recently picked up a copy and it's as good as remembered. I loved the book because instead of focuing on the internal development of the kid (how wealth affected his innerlife, his personality), it uses the kid to show the effect t
Jul 20, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children
This was my first Pinkwater book back in the late 1970's and it ruined me for life. Never again would I settle for average books with average plots populated by average characters. Finding Pinkwater is akin to finding a gourmet restaurant when you've only experienced IHOP for your entire changes everything.

I'm re-reading all of Pinkwater's novels in 2014 and I'm starting with the book that started it for me.

It's a five star book only because that's as high as I'm allowed to give it - i
Nov 04, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this short novel several times as a kid and enjoyed its zany characters and madcap plot -- who could forget Harold Blatz, Hamish MacTavish and Armand Vermin? -- so when I found a used copy I decided to revisit it. Clearly I missed a lot of the satire back then, but that only added to my enjoyment of it this time around!
Sep 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
humorous yet profound lesson on the cult of gurus for readers of all ages.
Glen Engel-Cox
I thought the satire, while obvious, in The Last Guru quite effective.
Nov 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Because I read it, it's awesome. ...more
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Mark Milotay
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Daniel Manus Pinkwater is an author of mostly children's books and is an occasional commentator on National Public Radio. He attended Bard College. Well-known books include Lizard Music, The Snarkout Boys and the Avocado of Death, Fat Men from Space, Borgel, and the picture book The Big Orange Splot. Pinkwater has also illustrated many of his books in the past, although for more recent works that ...more

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