Larceny in My Blood by Matthew Parker
A Memoir of Heroin, Handcuffs, and Higher Education

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Unfortunately, nobody seems to have explained quite how to use the medium of graphic novels to author Matthew Parker, and his failure to show us rather than tell us his story is the major hurdle Larceny in My Blood just can’t clear.
-NY Journal of Books

Synopsis

A fully illustrated graphic memoir of a child of the '60s who was raised into a life of crime and addiction —but graduated into freedom.

Matthew Parker was in his mid-forties when he started college. He’d been sidetracked: Eleven years were eaten up by serving time in various county jails, state penitentiaries, and federal prison. He’d been arrested more than thirty times, racking up eight felonies in a crime career that began at age thirteen, when he started dealing pot. When he got out of prison for the last time and kicked his heroin addiction, he was determined to spend the next chapter of his life in the classroom. And he did just that, going on to complete a master’s degree from Columbia University’s highly competitive creative writing program.

Through captivating black-and-white illustrations drawn in a distinctively primitive style, Larceny in My Blood flashes back on Parker's childhood, with memories of a loving but lawless mother teaching him that breaking the law was the way to survive. From there it moves to an account of Parker’s lost decades, where he resorted to petty crime to support a heroin habit. After years of fighting the system, Parker sees the light and Larceny in My Blood becomes a poignant portrait of a man trying to find his way in the straight and narrow. A unique memoir, Parker’s images and words form a mesmerizing road to redemption.

 

About Matthew Parker

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Matthew Parker recently earned an MFA in creative writing from Columbia University and has been drug- and crime-free since 2002. Born in Bridgeport, Connecticut, he now lives in New York City.
 
Published August 7, 2012 by Gotham. 288 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Larceny in My Blood
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NY Journal of Books

Below average
Reviewed by Jennifer Christopher Randle on Aug 07 2012

Unfortunately, nobody seems to have explained quite how to use the medium of graphic novels to author Matthew Parker, and his failure to show us rather than tell us his story is the major hurdle Larceny in My Blood just can’t clear.

Read Full Review of Larceny in My Blood: A Memoir... | See more reviews from NY Journal of Books

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