Promo Post: Enlightened by Sachi Ediriweera

Posted September 22, 2023 by Lisa Mandina in promo post / 2 Comments

Microsoft Word – Enlightened – Press Release.docx

“Conveys complex concepts in an accessible way and will appeal to readers who are curious about the origins of Buddhism. Ediriweera’s atmospheric illustrations include monochromatic, soothing blue watercolor-style backgrounds, and single-color accents of brown and orange highlight the crisp linework. Vividly rendered.” KIRKUS REVIEWS

“Bold linework and clean-cut panels depict Siddhartha’s struggle to reconcile the suffering of society beyond his privileged upbringing in this practical history of Buddhism, a philosophical primer.” PUBLISHERS WEEKLY

“This graphic novel was beautifully created … Gorgeously done in its simplistic illustrations and captivating writing. This is a graphic novel that makes me want to research Buddhism more and understand it … Overall, Enlightened by Sachi Ediriweera is one that everyone should read … For those who want to broaden their minds and expose themselves to more, I’d definitely put this on your list.” – YOUNG ADULT BOOKS CENTRAL

About the Book

Atheneum Books for Young Readers is proud to publish ENLIGHTENED, a groundbreaking graphic novel written and illustrated by Sachi Ediriweera (on sale September 26, 2023 in simultaneous hardcover and paperback editions). This is the first young adult biography about the life of the Buddha, and it follows him from his time as a young prince in the palace at Kapilavastu to his middle age, when he becomes the sage who is the founder of Buddhism. Lightly fictionalized, this is an exploration of Siddhartha the man, rather than Siddhartha the sage, and a contemplation on the

shared human desire to seek truth.

Prince Siddhartha lives in a beautiful palace in the heart of Kapilavastu. His father, the king, ensures that he has the best of everything—he just can’t go outside. He is locked up away from the city, away from anything that might cause him pain. He knows nothing of illness, aging, sorrow, or death, yet Siddhartha feels the pain regardless, and it instills a burning curiosity to understand the

world outside—and the nature of human suffering.

Based on the life of the real man who was known first as a prince, then as a monk, and now as the Gautama Buddha, ENLIGHTENED is about one boy’s quest to learn the truth that underpins our endless struggle against suffering—and

in understanding, break the cyclic existence that perpetuates it.

Ediriweera’s writing is extremely approachable—though the story is set in Nepal and is rooted deeply in his Buddhist belief, the spiritual terms are clearly and concisely explained, and the story is told accessibly. This is an easy entry point for learning about Buddhism. His art is also incredibly striking, and the minimal two-color palette reflects the progression of Siddhartha’s journey towards enlightenment. This book will be a real statement piece for any reader’s bookshelf.

While ENLIGHTENED is a fictionalized depiction of the life and religion of the Buddha, the broad strokes follow recorded facts about his life, and this is a ground-level introduction to an influential world religion. This will be a good resource for young readers who are curious about the topic, or who are beginning to do research for school projects and classroom activities.

About the Author

Microsoft Word – Enlightened – Press Release.docx

SACHI EDIRIWEERA (he/him/his) is an accomplished designer, filmmaker, and comic book artist. He is the writer and artist of the graphic novels Lionborn, which was the first English language graphic novel produced in Sri Lanka, and Enlightened. Apart from his design and illustration work, he has also built a career in filmmaking as a writer, producer, and director of acclaimed short films that have screened in numerous film festivals around the world. When he’s not drawing or writing his third-act plot twist, Sachi enjoys reading art books and comics, eating pizza, and overthinking cosplay ideas for comic cons. He divides his time between Colombo, Sri Lanka, and Dubai.

Microsoft Word – Enlightened – Press Release.docx

ENLIGHTENED by Sachi Ediriweera

Atheneum Books for Young Readers | On sale September 26, 2023 | Ages 12+, Grades 7+

Hardcover ISBN: 9781665903110; $22.99 | Paperback ISBN: 9781665903103; $13.99

E-Book ISBN: 9781665903127; $10.99



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