Almost Home: My Life Story

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iUniverse, 2005 - Biography & Autobiography - 168 pages
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"Almost Home" is a message to you from a faraway place. It is a message from a 12-foot by 9-foot cell in a cinderblock building surrounded by coils of razor wire in the middle of a dirt field in Arkansas. It was written by a young man named Damien Echols and it chronicles his life and his experiences in a way that clearly illuminates him, not as a monster, but as a human being. For over 10 years Damien has been an inmate on death row for a crime he did not commit. He, along with Jason Baldwin and Jessie Misskelley have become known as The West Memphis Three, and though the story of their arrest and conviction is widely known, most people don't know the real people behind the sound bites and the TV news segment clips. Damien has spent much of his time behind bars diligently maintaining his integrity and his sanity by writing."Almost Home" is the product of that self-discipline, and in it you will meet someone who has survived an ordeal many of us would find impossible to live through. There are a few who still believe that Damien is a devil-worshipping child killer, but as time passes and more facts rise to the surface, it becomes even more clear that he is the victim of a peculiar species of hysteria. Read this book and know the truth about him. It is an urgent message from death row; the whole story of who Damien Echols really is.
 

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Almost Home: My Life Story is an autobiography written by Damien Echols from a prison cell in 2005. He was on death row for the murder of three 8 year old boys. He was sentenced in 1993 at the age of 18 along with his best friend Jason Baldwin 17 and Jessie Mskelley 16.
I have always loved biography's but especially autobiography's since I was old enough to have my own library card and pick out books. I knew right where the biography section was in our local library and headed straight to it on our weekly trips there. There's something about getting to know someone so intimately you almost feel like you are that person for a while and yet you have never met them.
Out of the countless autobiographies I have read this one is the most fascinating. One wouldn't think he had a lot to tell having been locked away in solitary confinement almost entirely from only 18 years old and even the 18 short years before that he was self proclaimed "poor white trash" so he didn't have a lot of schooling, travels, or adventure to pull from. But his is a story that everyone should read because it is one that can happen to anyone. Despite his dire circumstances he has educated himself and become a very articulate, intelligent, wise, man with a lot to offer the world.
He also lets the world see inside with a rare view, just how corrupt a government and even a society can be even in this day and age when things like Orphan Trains horrify us. Deep in some Arkansas backwoods three little innocent 8 year old boys were mercilessly murdered and adding insult to travesty the local police began a witch hunt and brutally victimized three more boys only 8, 9, and 10 years older. To this very day, though they are physically free men, the state of Arkansas continue to punish them and hang this over their heads and refuse justice for the three younger ones by finding their killer. Dana Ray
 

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