A searing story about the painful climb one man must make from a life of crime to one filled with honor
Growing up in a devoutly religious family with a father who believed in firm discipline and who was also studying for a Protestant ministry, Joe Loya Jr. seemed a blessed child. When he was seven, however, his life was drastically altered when his mother was diagnosed with a terminal illness.
During the two years that led to her death, Joe's pious and studious father became more and more violent, brutally beating his two young sons. This contradiction haunted Joe for years until one day, at age sixteen, during a particularly severe beating, he finally retaliated and stabbed his father in the neck.
For Joe, this was the starting point of a life of crime: petty theft, forgery, fraud, and ultimately, bank robbery. When Joe was finally arrested after holding up his twenty-fourth bank, he was sent to prison, where he would serve seven years.
In prison, his criminal behavior only got worse, as he began to deal drugs, smuggle weapons, and even assault fellow prisoners, until he was placed in solitary confinement, the lowest of lows even for convicts. There, alone in his cell for two years, he was finally able to forgive his father, finding clarity, cultural insight, and redemption through writing.
During a soulful correspondence with acclaimed author Richard Rodriguez, Loya ultimately found that he wasn't alone in his struggle to discover his identity, and that anger is sometimes the doorway toward realizing one's self and one's purpose.
Although the images that propel an angry young man toward a life of crime may leave readers shuddering, the power of Joe Loya's incredible story will surely remind us that we must not lose hope that wayward sons and daughters may one day return home.
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Joe Loya is an essayist and playwright, as well as a contributing editor with the Pacific News Service. His essays have appeared in several national newspapers and magazines, including the San Francisco Examiner, the Los Angeles Times, and El Andar magazine. He lives with his wife in the Bay Area.
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Book Description Rayo, 2004. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. 2004 - First Printing, First Edition. 352 Pages. Book and dustjacket are in excellent condition. Hardback. 2004-09-01. Bookseller Inventory # SKU-3101025
Book Description Rayo, 2004. Book Condition: New. Brand New, Unread Copy in Perfect Condition. A+ Customer Service! Summary: "This is the most complete and unsparing portrait of a descent into wrongdoing--and the painful climb back to civility--that I've ever read."--Mark Salzman, author of "Lying Awake" and "Iron and Silk.". Bookseller Inventory # ABE_book_new_0060508922
Book Description Book Condition: Brand New. Book Condition: Brand New. Bookseller Inventory # 97800605089201.0
Book Description Rayo, 2004. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0060508922
Book Description Rayo, 2004. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110060508922