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American Junkie takes you to the gristle-chewing tracks of the gnarly Emerald City before the first wave of Sub Pop-loving kids arrived, back when our dreams here had more to do with New York City and Los Angeles than being known locally. It fluctuates through time like all the best drug stories: From a kid raised in the 1960s, near woods with a father who promised to pay Hansen a nickel for every page he read of the Hardy Boys; flashing to a hospital assessment describing the heroin dependency, abscesses, severe malnutrition, and virulent diarrhea of what had become of him by 1999.
But that's the starting point: It's the period of post-punk fear and desperation that drives Hansen through most of the book that rings true for anyone who lived in the wastelands where the city's clubs would spring up, before The Crocodile and the new wave of club action, back in the days of SCUD and musicians who had gotten used to a music scene where no national bands wanted to play and shows often as not brought cops barreling down. The opiated alternative doesn't seem like such a bad choice in a port city with little respect for its young people; not until your IV wounds are oozing liquid the color and consistency of olive oil and you've long ago forgotten about playing out. --KEXP Radio, April 14, 2010
Amazing look into addiction and the underground world of heroin. Amazing read!Published 12 days ago by Mary K Cox
So, I had a chance to read through some major and defining events of Tom Hansen's life.
I'm surpirised there was a book to document it. Read more
Tom brings to life what it must feel like to be suffering from addiction. I read it from start to finish over the course of two days. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Shelly420
I felt like this book really gave you the detailed account of what really is going on in the mind of an addict... I really enjoyed this book....Published 6 months ago by candim27
This book is amazing, plain and simple. If you are even considering a hard drug habit, read this book FIRST. If this story doesn't make you reconsider... Read morePublished 7 months ago by J. Bonner
Gutsy, honest book about life as a junkie and the long painful road to a new life. The Hansens are family friends and I was deeply moved by the side of the story that I had never... Read morePublished 7 months ago by jon s.
i found this book frustrating. for example, he is telling this story from a burn unit rehab but we are never told how he got there. are we just supposed to know? Read morePublished 7 months ago by TheBanshee
If you like honest, raw, gritty writing you must read this book. Tom's story will have you laughing, crying and even disgusted at times but you will never stop rooting for him, (I... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Cynthia Cone