“Confessions of a Clueless Rebel” by Tom Corbett


Tom Corbett
Hancock Press (2018)
ISBN 9781948000208
Reviewed by Carol Hoyer for Reader Views (7/19)

Author Tom Corbett provides readers with a humorous, insightful look into growing up during post World War II as a Catholic, coming-of-age, wandering youth in “Confessions of a Clueless Rebel.” I found his writing to be vividly descriptive of the times as well as filled with humor.

Corbett originally published his memoir under the title “Ouch, Now I Remember.” He relates he was a rebel of sorts, pushing back against his reading, culture, expected destiny, and professional norms. I had to laugh when he stated, “It more or less just happened, as if it was meant to be, and I was the innocent bystander.”

The author shares with us his journey as a person who studied for the priesthood, joined a radical organization during college, taught Social Justice at a college, and worked the night shift at a hospital, just to name a few of his “Jack of All Trades” exploits. He makes an excellent point when he relates, “Everyone’s life is interesting. We all have adventures, big and small, worth a bit of reflection.” It reminds me of a question my granddaughter asked me, “What was something in your life that was a turning point for you?”

This book is written in a conversational tone that will be well-received by readers. “Confessions of a Clueless Rebel” is a thoughtful memoir about life and how to come to terms with it. From the very first page, readers will have a smile on their face, laughing on the inside. Corbett provides an entertaining table of contents with each chapter title containing one word. When you think about it, that’s all one needs. The ease, clarity, and humor keep readers from putting the book down as they continue the journey with him.

Being raised Catholic and learning to live life according to the scriptures would prove to be very difficult for him. This conflict with his faith, his time with the Peace Corp in India, and seminary, transformed him from someone who just faked his way through life to someone who found a purpose that launched a more fulfilled life.

“Confessions of a Clueless Rebel” is not only funny but very entertaining. Anyone from adult to young adults will relate to the stories. I highly recommend Corbett’s story.

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