The image on the cover of “A Different Road: From Bum to Mystic,” is compelling: A closeup of a man whose face is half-bearded, half clean-shaven. But the author bio is even more intriguing: “Born in Germany – given up by my first set of parents before I was one. Thrown between foster homes, adopted at five, sexually abused by seven, physically assaulted by my dad at eight, and institutionalized at eleven. Given up by my third set of parents at 13, a ward of the state till 19, then I traveled the country for six years before settling down to a family of five on a farm. So far it has been a happily-ever-after.”
This is pretty much the story behind local writer Tobias Moore’s memoir, which is described as “one man’s adventures from the prisons of California to the American streets; from the mythical realms of magic to the path of parenthood.” In 156 pages the father, gardener and students talks about “drugs, pain, and ecstatic suffering … a story found in the gutters and trash heaps of American culture” and how he eventually finds peace and begins a family.