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In American Junkie, Tom Hansen takes us non-stop into a land of desperate addicts, failed punk bands, and brushes with sad fame, selling drugs during the Seattle grunge years. It’s a story that maps his heroin addiction, from the promise of a young life to the prison of a mattress, from budding musician to broken down junkie, drowning in syringes and cigarette butts, shooting heroin into wounds the size of softballs, and ultimately, a ride to a hospital for a six-month stay and a painful self-discovery that cuts down to the bone. Through it all he never really loses his step, never lets go of his smarts, and always projects quintessential American reason, humor, and hope to make a story not only about drugs, but a compelling study of vulnerability and toughness.
Tom Hansen was born in Seattle and raised by adoptive parents in nearby Edmonds, WA. A failed skateboarder, dishwasher and punk rock guitarist, he turned to shooting and dealing smack. He was very good at it. Following the incidents depicted here, Hansen kicked his habit returned to school and eventually earned an MFA in writing from the University of British Columbia. Tom lives and writes in Seattle. In addition to American Junkie his other work includes the highly praised retro noir thriller, This is What We Do.