(Rainbow Books, Inc.)
Published in 1993, Discovering Life’s Trails: Adventures in Living remains a seminal account from one of the south’s greatest travelers. This counts as Tom Dennard’s first of four books.
Born in Pineview, Georgia, a small farming community, Dennard attended Davidson College in North Carolina and The University of Georgia Law School. He still practices law in Glynn County, Georgia.
Discovering Life’s Trails contains nine compelling chapters. Dennard writes about starting a hostel in rural southeast Georgia, which is still in existence. This chapter offers amazing stories regarding ponds, tree houses, geodesic domes, church groups, Bob Segar’s roadies, rattlesnake suppers, mullet smoking, a psychic and various other rare characters.
Two chapters of the book are dedicated to Dennard’s sons, Ted & Jeff, who now operate the Savannah Bee Company. Dennard also writes about his old East Germany hiking partner when they witnessed the crumbling of the Berlin Wall. In “Marie’s Triumph" Dennard reveals “the rediscovery of a married couple’s strength in their ascent of Africa’s tallest peak”. Another memorable chapter captures Dennard’s trip to Kenya.
“The Rufus Letter” revolves around a humorous legal correspondence pertaining to the family dog. The final chapter includes a letter to Dennard’s daughter and grandsons where he shares his philosophy of life with “sixteen pertinent points on facing the hazard’s of life’s trails.”
Discovering Life’s Trails exists as a singular book told by a hero of the highest order.