cover image Call of the Mild: Misadventures in Africa, Hollywood, and other Wild Places

Call of the Mild: Misadventures in Africa, Hollywood, and other Wild Places

Torry Martin and Doug Peterson. Harvest House, $13.99 trade paper (224p) ISBN 978-0-7369-7159-1

Screenwriter and actor Martin teams with Peterson (the VeggieTales series) for a fun memoir that explores Martin’s years growing up outside Silverdale, Wash., and his thoughts about God. Martin casually speaks of his current living situation and career—he is single and lives in rural Tennessee with a roommate, Rob, who serves as a practical presence next to Martin’s goofiness. The book toggles between Martin’s high school years and contemporary misadventures with Rob, work trips to Africa, and travels through continental Europe. For instance, after reading criticism of one of his films, Martin thinks back on bullies from his high school days when he was a “fat kid who liked theater.” Although Martin’s style is over-the-top and the haphazardly structured narrative lacks cohesion, his earnest humor and quick wit end up being saving graces. Martin’s relationship with his father, an outdoorsman who gave him the initials T.D. for “touchdown,” is particularly funny: “Poor guy wanted a quarterback but got a Quarter Pounder instead.” While Martin’s enjoyable book frequently references faith and quotes Scripture, his takeaway that “following God’s calling involves sacrifice” will leave readers seeking deeper faith elements unimpressed. Those interested in wholesome fun from a quirky voice will be captivated by Martin’s book.(Apr.)