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Confessions of a Nuclear Dinosaur comment (0)

March 13, 2014

By Martine Bates Sharp


Ronald L. Kirkland. Bloomington, Ind.: CrossBooks, 2013. 172 pp. (Paperback).

In the 44 years Ronald Kirkland worked in the nuclear submarine building industry, he went from being a raw recruit to a “dinosaur” who was ready to retire. Along the way, life happened and this is his telling of the story. 

Kirkland’s early life was difficult. He grew up surrounded by alcoholics and instability, then started down a similar path as an adult — until he was given a Bible by a co-worker. The story of his conversion is a humbling reminder of the need to reach out to the people we encounter with the gospel — even the ones who seem least likely to respond.

Most self-published biographies I read are not well done. Sometimes the story is interesting but clumsily written, and sometimes the story seems more fitting for family and friends who know and love the writer than for a general audience. Not so with this book — Kirkland has gifted us with an engaging story, exceedingly well told. 

The only flaw I found in this book is that Kirkland seems to have dropped the thread of his personal story about halfway through, spending most of the remainder of the book on his career. Having come to know the young Kirkland in the first part of the book, I would have liked to read more about his family and personal life in the later years. Kirkland lives in Harvest.  

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