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Review: Coming Up For Air by Tom Daley

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Unless you’ve been living under a rock, chances are you know the man, the myth, the legend that is Tom Daley who stole everyone’s hearts with his unforgettable performance in winning medals at the Olympics. In these memoirs, Daley dives deep (pardon the pun) into his professional and personal life and explores the experiences that shaped his mindset and his path in life.

Now I admit, I’m not someone who reads a lot of memoirs so I don’t have much to compare Coming soon for Air but what I can say is that I didn’t expect anyone else’s story to be so gripping.

Much of this can be attributed to Daley’s inviting and unassuming writing style. It’s fascinating to learn about the career of a successful Olympian, sure, but even more fascinating to read about the pressure Daley is under and the pressure he puts on himself. I think when you watch the Olympics sometimes you forget that even though it’s a definite moment in the life of a professional athlete, there’s so much more that you can’t see. Getting to know what happens behind the scenes and from the perspective of the one who competes and wins has been an enriching experience. I also loved how we discovered how much work, courage and perseverance it takes to get to the top and stay there. The curated selection of iconic photos (and those that audiences weren’t aware of prior to these memoirs) also added another personal touch to the memoirs.

Beyond Daley’s career, there are of course other aspects covered in Coming soon for Air. While I don’t want to go into too much detail, I will say that I loved getting a glimpse of other aspects of Tom – from the pressures and weight management issues when you’re in the spotlight to Daley discussing how whose life has been affected by how the tabloids talk about him being gay and a young parent. This is where I felt the most connected to Daley because as a member of the LGBTQIAP+ community, it’s always both enjoyable and sometimes encouraging to hear someone else’s story. Daley also discusses the loss of his father which was heartbreaking to read but shows you that, hey, that person you see on screen is someone dealing with the same things you are.

Perhaps my favorite part of Daley’s memoir is the feelings they evoke in you as you read – Daley certainly had his fair share of struggles and it was inspiring and even empowering to watch him transform each obstacle into opportunity or, at the very least, into a learning experience from which he could emerge stronger or more confident. I loved that, even for someone like Daley life isn’t all sunshine and happy times but the way he approaches life (and its many challenges) made me feel like he would be a good friend to have by your side when the going gets tough. Overall, I think these memoirs will appeal to readers who are long-time Daley fans or those who have just seen his performance in games in Tokyo.

Charming, insightful and inspiring, the memoirs of Tom Daley Coming soon for Air very similar to its author, one of a kind.

Coming soon for Air is available from Amazon, Book Depository and other good book retailers, like your local bookstore, starting May 17, 2022.

Will you pick up Coming soon for Air? Tell us in the comments below!


Contents | Good reads

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A deeply personal and inspiring memoir from one of the most famous and influential names in British sport.

Tom Daley captured the hearts of the nation with his unforgettable medal performance at the London 2012 Olympic Games. At this year’s Games in Tokyo, he triumphed to win gold and became the most decorated British diver of all time .

In this deeply personal book, Tom explores the experiences that shaped him and the qualities to which he owes his contentment and success; from the resilience he developed competing on a global level, to the courage he discovered in reclaiming the narrative around his sexuality, and the perspective that family life gave him.

Candid and insightful, Coming for air offers unique insight into the life and mindset of one of our greatest and most beloved athletes.