Don’t Just Deplore Bullying — Fight It!

Author/attorney/child-and-anti-abuse advocate Andrew Vachss’ latest, the graphic novel (and a half) HEART TRANSPLANT, hit the stores this week. Read it!

I can’t do better in pushing you to do that, than to repeat the quote I gave the publisher:
“Heart Transplant is a necessity in a country that sometimes seems to be run by bullies at every level, from kindergarten to Capitol Hill. It fits the bill perfectly, with a simple and simply terrific story, wise and scholarly commentary that lets nobody off the hook, and the incandescent Rorschach of Frank Caruso’s illustrations. IF YOU’RE WONDERING NOT JUST WHY BULLYING HAPPENS BUT WHAT TO DO ABOUT IT, READ HEART TRANSPLANT. It ranks alongside Andrew Vachss’ Another Chance to Get It Right as a signpost on the road to a more human society.”

I keep a stash of Another Chance in my house, in case of emergencies–like people who don’t know what to do about their own histories of enduring abuse. Reading it changed an important part of my life. Heart Attack is just as important, and maybe even of more widespread importance. A big part of that is the part written by Zak Mucha, a Chicago social worker.

Zak and artist Frank Caruso will be on Kick Out the Jams and Land of Hope and Dreams on Sunday, October 31. The date could not be more perfectly chosen if we’d tried. This week on Kick Out the Jams, we will feature the “It Gets Better” speech by a Ft. Worth City Councilman along with a spoken piece by Zak, “The Problem with ‘It Gets Better.'” The text and video of Zak’s piece are at

While you’re at, I hope you’ll join Protect, the National Organization to Protect Children, which is unique in two ways: First, it’s the most important lobby in America, fighting for better legal protection against abuse–a lobby to advocate for kids of all classes and, truly, to advocate for a nation that tells the truth rather than trying to lie and cover-up scandal and evil. Second, it’s the only place I can think of where I regularly keep company with police, prosecutors and conservatives. It takes much more than a village on this one; it takes a nation and a world.

Andrew Vachss will be on Land of Hope and Dreams on December 14. (Part of the interview Andrew and I did–with production by the great Kara O’Connor–in 2007 can be heard at )

The following is from a message sent by Andrew’s mailing list (and yeah, I’ve read The Weight and it’s terrific too–might be a good starting point for reading his one-of-a-kind novels):

If you’re willing to wait about a month , you can order a signed copy through the link at

And we’re only three weeks away from the release of THE WEIGHT, Andrew Vachss’ next crime-fiction novel. Info at

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