In Life and Adventures of Tom the Bomb, a man in his golden years shares stand-out events from his busy, adventure-filled life, resulting in a highly personal and sincere work of nonfiction.
Tom Ryan states from the outset that this is not a biography, but a compilation of many unusual, strange and wonderful things that have happened to him. He credits the grace of God with making his life so interesting and full.
The book is written as a collection of life snippets, such as the spiritual influence he felt from the Dominican nuns who visited his tiny Nebraska town each year. Just after high school, curiosity led him to a Trappist Monastery where he ended up staying nearly six years before venturing out to experience many eye-opening places (such as travel through Mexico) and sometimes dangerous situations, as when he was challenged to fights by toughs.
Along with his adventures, Ryan shares personal advice, like the importance of training in self-defense, as he did, so that you are unafraid to take chances. He also offers random self-help tidbits, such as how to be a crack shot with a rifle and how to light a fire in the rain with wet wood. Throughout, he stresses the importance of trusting in God and not succumbing to self-centered pride.
The writing style is straightforward yet folksy: “Remember when I recently listed 68 unusual happenings in my life, well, hold your hat, because I’m starting to remember even more!” The stories ramble back and forth in years and occasionally repeat details. As such, the book needs stronger overall organization as well as editing (for punctuation needs and to eliminate excessive exclamation points).
Despite such issues, the author’s positive spin could appeal to those seeking a spiritually uplifting and generally inspiring read.
Also available in hardcover and ebook.