From Publishers Weekly
Ray Materson, a good student who wanted to be a priest when he grew up, began doing drugs in college and got into trouble with the law. He was sent to jail for a car-jacking (in which he used a toy gun), and while there, learned how to embroider. Sewing with the threads of unraveled socks, Materson made intricate works that depicted everything from his favorite football team to the confinement he felt in prison. Along with his wife, Melanie Materson, he tells the story of how he found hope and salvation through art in Sins and Needles: A Story of Spiritual Mending. The book includes illustrations of 50 pieces of Materson's needlework.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
Ray Materson was, he says, "a good boy gone bad." He had been an A student, even class president once (in sixth grade), and had hoped to become a priest. But dysfunctional family life and an increasingly troubled, aimless adolescence led to alcohol and drug addiction, a failed marriage, petty crime, and a 25-year sentence for carjacking with a toy gun. He started turning around irrevocably, though, during the 1988 Christmas season. The University of Michigan was in the Rose Bowl, and to cheer the team on and bolster his sagging spirits, he stitched an M out of thread from his maize-and-blue socks. Soon he was embroidering flags and emblems for fellow inmates. As his work became more sophisticated, he got media attention. Other changes coincided. From prison, he corresponded with, met, and eventually married Melanie, a writer who proceeded to promote his needle-artwork and has helped him tell, compellingly and with winning simplicity, an inspiring and touching story of the transformative power of art and the resiliency of the human spirit. June SawyersCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved