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NO MATTER HOW LOUD I SHOUT : A Year in the Life of Juvenile Court Reprint Edition

54 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0684811956
ISBN-10: 0684811952
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Editorial Reviews Review

This is one powerful book: it will grab you with vivid stories about individual kids, draw you in with honesty and compassion, and amaze you with alarming details about how the juvenile justice system works (or rather, doesn't work) in America. Anyone interested in the problem of crime should read Edward Humes's gripping account of how future criminals are shaped in youth, and how the system misses its chance to help them before they're lost for good. As Richard Bernstein writes in the New York Times, "There are many admirable things about Mr. Humes's book, which, despite its grim subject matter, has a narrative power that keeps you reading right to the end. One of them is that Mr. Humes is a shrewd and perceptive observer of his young subjects ... [and he] allows himself to feel sympathy for the young people whose lives and crimes he describes.... At the same time, Mr. Humes never exonerates bad children for their badness." No Matter How Loud I Shout was a finalist for the 1997 Edgar Award in Fact Crime.

From Publishers Weekly

After being granted access by court order to a system that is usually closed to the public, Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Humes (Buried Secrets) spent 1994 surveying the largely futile attempts of Los Angeles to deal with its juvenile crime. He concentrates here on a few who have not let themselves be overwhelmed by the deluge of defendants-80,000 cases are pending at any given time: Judge Roosevelt Dorn, who is also a clergyman; Deputy DA Peggy Beckstrand, who finally leaves the system to work on adult cases; Probation Officer Sharon Stegall, who tries to cope with the insurmountable burden of supervising 200 juveniles; Shery Gold, a public defender who also wants to move to adult courts. Humes follows closely the cases of seven young people who were caught up in the system, three of whom have been saved by it?maybe. First serial to Glamour and L.A. Magazine.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster; Reprint edition (May 7, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0684811952
  • ISBN-13: 978-0684811956
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #22,217 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

QUICK STORY: A Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and author, Edward Humes' latest books are A MAN AND HIS MOUNTAIN (Public Affairs, October 2013), the biography of winemaking legend Jess Jackson, and GARBOLOGY: Our Dirty Love Affair With Trash (Avery/Penguin, April 2012). His other books include the PEN Award-winning NO MATTER HOW LOUD I SHOUT: A Year In the Life of Juvenile Court, the bestseller MISSISSIPPI MUD, FORCE OF NATURE: The Unlikely Story of Wal-Mart's Green Revolution, and MONKEY GIRL: Evolution, Education, Religion and the Battle for America's Soul.

BACK STORY: When I was six I decided I wanted to be a writer, and I've been at it ever since. I started my writing career in newspapers, and I think I probably would have paid them, instead of the other way around, for the thrill of seeing my first byline in print. As a newspaper reporter, I gravitated toward stories that allowed me to dig behind the scenes and beneath the surface, looking for questions others hadn't asked or imagined. For me, the job amounted to this: license to find out the things I had always wanted to know, about anything and everything that interested, touched or outraged me. Then, within the space and time limitations of a daily newspaper, I had the chance to mold it all into a story to pass onto others. I loved that work.

When I left newspapers to write nonfiction books, I suddenly had weeks or months, rather than hours or days, to immerse myself in the inner workings of the places, characters and events I seek to understand and write about. I had found the greatest job I can imagine.

In my books, I try to take readers inside worlds most don't get to visit or see close up on their own. My first stories were about crime -- real-life murder mysteries-- and I still enjoy reading and writing true crime. But I've pursued broader and more varied narratives in my more recent books. I've written about the nation's crumbling juvenile justice system, the California high school that went from worst to best in the state, the harrowing but surprisingly humane world of a neonatal intensive care unit, the front lines of a modern-day Scopes Monkey Trial, a Gulf Coast murder mystery solved by the victims' own daughter.

Lately - in ECO BARONS, FORCE OF NATURE and GARBOLOGY - I've focused on narratives about the environment and sustainability. I believe this to be the most important story of our age - for ourselves, and for our children.

But after immersing myself in trash for GARBOLOGY, I dove into the very different world of wine and undertook my very first biography. I feel privileged to tell the classic American success story behind the founder of Kendall-Jackson Wines, Jess Jackson, in A MAN AND HIS MOUNTAIN.

OTHER WRITING: I've written for numerous publications, including Los Angeles Magazine, Sierra Magazine, Readers Digest, California Lawyer, the Oxford American, the Los Angeles Times, and The New York Times. I have taught writing and journalism at the University of California, Irvine, Chapman University, and the University of Oregon.

SPEAKING: I enjoy speaking about my work, and have been invited to address a wide range of groups and organizations:the National Education Summit, the National Steinbeck Center, the ALOUD series, the National Association of District Attorneys, the National Association of Criminal Defense Attorneys, the National Association of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, the Dole Center for Politics, the National High School Journalism Conference, the National College Newspaper Convention, the National Association of Teachers of English, the California Department of Corrections, the California Appellate Project, the American Psychology and Law Society, the Investigative Reporters and Editors, the Poynter Institute, the Crichton Club and numerous universities and other schools. I was called to testify about my reporting on juvenile court before the U.S. Senate and a joint session of the California Senate and Assembly. I've had the pleasure of delivering a commencement address at Hampshire College in Amherst, my alma mater, and have enjoyed speaking at venues throughout California as a contributing writer to MY CALIFORNIA, an anthology from which all proceeds were donated to the California Arts Council to support arts and writing programs for the state's school children. I served as a Regents Lecturer at the University of California, Irvine, and taught writing workshops at the University of Oregon graduate program in literary nonfiction.

HONORS: I received a Pulitzer Prize for my newspaper coverage of the military, a PEN Center USA award for NO MATTER HOW LOUD I SHOUT, a Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism for "The Forgotten," my LA Magazine account of life inside Los Angeles's nightmarish home for neglected children, and a Silver Gavel honor for MONKEY GIRL. The Washington Post named SCHOOL OF DREAMS a best book of 2003; the Los Angeles Times named MEAN JUSTICE a best book of 1999.

BORN: Philadelphia.

EDUCATION: Hampshire College, Amherst, Mass.

CURRENT WHEREABOUTS: Southern California

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By J. Gutierrez on May 10, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I was one of the victims listed in this book. It was an accurate account of what happened from my point of view and gave me some insight into what two affluent teenagers were doing robbing me at gunpoint in a "supposedly" low crime part of Los Angeles, The Palos Verdes Peninsula. We've since moved and my children are grown with families of their own now. It's no fun looking at "the stupid end" of a gun & one especially in an unsophisticated teenagers hand. My story in the book just goes to prove that the more money you have for defense the better deal you're going to get,period.

For the record, our family has been changed forever. I'm a lot more cynical toward someone who looks like a "gang-banger" irrespective of their race. My children have a hatred toward Koreans even though they are Asian (We are Filipinos) themselves and I'm afraid that that bias will be transferred to my grandchildren, I certainly hope not.

I just hope the two young men that robbed me that evening will turn their lives around and become productive members of society. My late Grandfather once told me that even though I would not always be able to provide every material wish for my children just spending time loving them would serve them well as adults and it has.

Thank God I'm still alive to write this. It all could have been so different.I hope none of you have to experience what we have. God bless you all.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Eric Karl Chambers on September 6, 2000
Format: Paperback
Let me start by saying that I really enjoyed this book. Mr. Humes is a wonderful writing who has the skills to draw the reader in in such a way as to "experience" the things he is writing about. Readers, though, ought to be aware that this is a book about a very specific system-the California Juvenile Justice System-which as most people in the field know is substantially different than, say the juvenile system in Topeka, Kansas. I think part of the book's utility, and the reason I think anyone in the field out to read it, is the way in which Humes makes salient the individuals that make up the larger system in much the way Marc Parent did in Turning Stones.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 19, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is the quintessential book for me. All I can say is that everyone and no one is responsible for the plight of kids like "George Trevino". His impossible situation haunted me, surfacing raw emotions. Why do we turn our backs on kids like this? We need to find an answer fast before we transform conscientious orphans into delinquents whose only dominant emotion is hate. Where is George now? Has he given up on the system yet? I hope not. Every time I think of his disadvantaged life I need an easy culprit to lay the blame on, when in reality I should be holding the person in the mirror accountable...
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By "jrkirk0" on February 1, 2001
Format: Paperback
I read this book for my sociology class. It was the best I've read. The stories of these kids are so involving and twisted that you wonder if this is book is fiction. This gives such insight to the problems of todays juveniles and how the court system fails them repeatedly and how the kids fail themself. Truly sad and yet reminding us how cold life can be and how fortunate some of us actually are relative to these kids. Although you can read this book in a few hours, it's still worth having on your shelf. This book is part indictment of the system and part spotlight on the troubles ahead for us all if it's not corrected.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Franklin the Mouse on September 20, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Much like Mr. Humes' "Monkey Girl," he combines great writing and outstanding investigative work to produce a must read book. To say that the current approach in dealing with children is disfunctional would be putting it mildly. A chronically underfunded juvenile system, a short-sighted or unaware populace and no political will to fix this huge cancer is very well depicted in the author's book. Most of the repeat offenders, identified in the system as Sixteen Percenters, know full well how laughably arbitrary and ineffective justice is meted out to them. Though the scenes depicted are about the Los Angeles' juvenile court system, it is indicative of a national problem. Even in my very low crime-rate state of Maine, people who have worked within our juvenile-court system have said that Mr. Humes analysis is right on the money. Though it was published in 1996, his reporting holds up to today's zeitgeist. The book was extremely compelling, but so infuriating that I could barely see straight. If you'll excuse me, I'm going to go hug my two young sons, now.
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17 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Michael A. Males on October 9, 1998
Format: Hardcover
Ed Humes provides a superior account of the human (and inhuman) side of the juvenile justice system in Los Angeles. Accolades to his reporting are justified, but Humes' advocacy of the juvenile justice system suffers a fatal mistake: he relies on secondary sources for basic facts and presents a completely backwards picture. The startling truth, clearly evident from reviewing crime statistics for Los Angeles from the state Criminal Justice Statistics Center, is that juvenile crime (especially serious crime) has been PLUMMETING DRAMATICALLY for 20 years. Teenage felony rates fell more than 40% from 1975 through 1995 (and dropped even more in 1996 and 1997), with sharp decreases in property and drug crimes and no increase in violent crime. Had Humes consulted original sources instead of relying on the inflammatory secondary commentators on juvenile justice, he would have authored a revolutionary and inspiring treatise on how -- despite the negative odds of growing poverty, more chaotic homes, and deteriorating job and education opportunity for youth of color -- Los Angeles teenagers and the stressed juvenile justice system can boast surprising successes. Instead, Humes resorts to unwarranted, inflammatory denigration of an entire generation and produces a disappointingly standard book that misses the real story.
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