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A Few Kind Words and a Loaded Gun: The Autobiography of a Career Criminal

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A Few Kind Words and a Loaded Gun: The Autobiography of a Career Criminal Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Brutal and violent, this tell-all is a personal account of the life of Razor Smith and the world in which he lived, where ruthlessness, viciousness, and savagery are prized and admired. In prison more than half of his life for assaults and armed robberies, Smith became confined in a peculiar kind of hell from which his only route of escape was to master the art of writing. His book shows us a face of crime not often encountered in run-of-the-mill true-crime books: a face as tender and intimate as a lover's, yet as frightening as a killer's. Powerfully written from beginning to end, this is an extraordinarily vivid account of how a kid from South London became a career criminal, a blistering indictment of a system that brutalized young offenders, and an unsentimental acknowledgment of the adrenaline-fueled thrills of the criminal life. Shocking, fascinating, and horrifying, it also reveals Smith as one of the most talented writers of his generation.

Review:

"The brief biographical blurb about Smith on the dust jacket, describing his '58 criminal convictions,' as well as his gaining 'an Honors Diploma from the London School of Journalism' while in a U.K. prison, captures the irony and waste of the author's life. Despite above average intelligence and countless opportunities for rehabilitation, Smith chose to lead the life of a vicious thug, and this often inappropriately irreverent memoir will engage the sympathies of few of his readers. Smith, who abandoned his given name of Noel for a street nickname derived from his weapon of choice, presents himself as a slightly wild but basically normal London adolescent whose descent into crime was fueled by police brutality. While his graphic depictions of that brutality, as well as the horrific conditions inside the British penal system, ring true, his own appalling sadism and callousness leave more of an impression. Tragically, Smith's choices devastate his family as well, and he belatedly realizes the toll his life of crime imposed on them. His indifference toward the countless people he terrorized in bank robberies or wounded with his razor blade is summed up in the book's concluding sentiment: 'I never slashed a face that wasn't looking at me, and I never robbed a bank that wasn't insured.'" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

About the Author

Razor Smith has 58 criminal convictions and has spent most of his adult life in prison, where he taught himself to read and write, gaining an Honours Diploma from the London School of Journalism. He has received a number of awards for his writing and has contributed articles to the Big Issue, the Guardian, the Independent, Punch, the New Law Journal, and the New Statesman.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781556525711
Author:
Smith, Razor
Publisher:
Chicago Review Press
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
Criminals & Outlaws
Subject:
BIO024000
Subject:
Biography - General
Edition Description:
Trade Cloth
Publication Date:
20050431
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
496
Dimensions:
9 x 6 x 1.3 in 1.73 lb

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Related Subjects

Biography » General
History and Social Science » Crime » Criminology
History and Social Science » Crime » General

A Few Kind Words and a Loaded Gun: The Autobiography of a Career Criminal New Hardcover
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Product details 496 pages Chicago Review Press - English 9781556525711 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "The brief biographical blurb about Smith on the dust jacket, describing his '58 criminal convictions,' as well as his gaining 'an Honors Diploma from the London School of Journalism' while in a U.K. prison, captures the irony and waste of the author's life. Despite above average intelligence and countless opportunities for rehabilitation, Smith chose to lead the life of a vicious thug, and this often inappropriately irreverent memoir will engage the sympathies of few of his readers. Smith, who abandoned his given name of Noel for a street nickname derived from his weapon of choice, presents himself as a slightly wild but basically normal London adolescent whose descent into crime was fueled by police brutality. While his graphic depictions of that brutality, as well as the horrific conditions inside the British penal system, ring true, his own appalling sadism and callousness leave more of an impression. Tragically, Smith's choices devastate his family as well, and he belatedly realizes the toll his life of crime imposed on them. His indifference toward the countless people he terrorized in bank robberies or wounded with his razor blade is summed up in the book's concluding sentiment: 'I never slashed a face that wasn't looking at me, and I never robbed a bank that wasn't insured.'" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
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