We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access .
Tattoos on the Heart Audiobook

Tattoos on the Heart: The Power of Boundless Compassion

Regular Price:$20.97
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Publisher's Summary

As a pastor working in a neighborhood with the highest concentration of murderous gang activity in Los Angeles, Gregory Boyle created an organization to provide jobs, job training, and encouragement so that young people could work together and learn the mutual respect that comes from collaboration.

Tattoos on the Heart is a breathtaking series of parables distilled from his 20 years in the barrio. Arranged by theme and filled with sparkling humor and glowing generosity, these essays offer a stirring look at how full our lives could be if we practiced compassion.

Erudite, down-to-earth, and utterly heartening, these essays about universal kinship and redemption are moving examples of the power of unconditional love in difficult times and the importance of fighting despair. With Gregory Boyle's guidance, we can recognize our own wounds in the broken lives and daunting struggles of the men and women in these parables and learn to find joy in all of the people around us. Tattoos on the Heart reminds us that no life is less valuable than another.

©2010 Gregory Boyle. Recorded by arrangement with Free Press, a division of Simon & Schuster, Inc. (P)2011 HighBridge Company

What the Critics Say

“One of my favorite books in years. It is lovely and tough and tender beyond my ability to describe.” (Anne Lamott)

“Destined to become a classic of both urban reportage and contemporary spirituality.” (The Los Angeles Times)

“Read, and let your life be changed!” (Father Richard Rohr, O.F.M., Center for Action and Contemplation)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.7 (1027 )
5 star
 (796)
4 star
 (157)
3 star
 (40)
2 star
 (21)
1 star
 (13)
Overall
4.7 (917 )
5 star
 (725)
4 star
 (128)
3 star
 (40)
2 star
 (13)
1 star
 (11)
Story
4.7 (917 )
5 star
 (721)
4 star
 (133)
3 star
 (46)
2 star
 (9)
1 star
 (8)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    colin 08-24-15
    colin 08-24-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    38
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Beautifully honest"

    Beyond powerful this book takes the humanity of a people disempowered and puts them in front of your face showing you all of their beauty and rawness. Leaving you with no option but to accept the reality, which has always been; these young men and women, like all the other people, are your family sisters and brothers. This book is a look into America with red eyes. This is honesty in prose

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sarabaite 08-17-15
    Sarabaite 08-17-15 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    34
    22
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great for the beginning of the school year"
    What made the experience of listening to Tattoos on the Heart the most enjoyable?

    Every year, school districts plan some kind of district-wide pep rally to boost morale and start the year off right. In 2012, they invited the author and narrator of "Tattoos on the Heart" to speak at ours. It was easily the best one I’ve ever been to – lucky for me, since that was the year I waved goodbye to esteemed colleagues who I had known for about 17 years and Brent and I moved about 1,300 miles southeast from anyone we knew. It seemed a good time to listen to the book as I’m getting ready for another school year. I’m still the same distance from LA, except that now I’m north. One especially good theme in the collection of stories was that measuring our efforts by outcomes that are either labeled as “successes” or “failures” can be murky, and sometimes it’s a bit beside the point. Clearly, we need to reflect on our contributions, our successes and failures. Sometimes, though, we just need to persist in being a positive force regardless of outcomes, provided we keep an open ear for how we could do better.There was a different theme that kept nettling me until the very end. I value books that force me to ask myself why I think or feel a certain way. Boyle’s main theme – right on the cover, in fact, is using unwavering compassion to enact change, emphasizing that compassion does not mean endorsing someone’s crimes. It does mean that helping people be better not only helps them, but it helps everyone around them. In the process of making this point, Boyle presents stories that underscore reaching out to “victim and victimizer alike” as Homeboy Industries aims to persuade all sides to either literally or figuratively lay down their guns. I could clearly understand how this made sense when talking about the public violence of gangs, so I had to ask myself why that point – helping “victim and victimizer alike” kept prickling at me. By the end, I finally pinned it down. Growing up in a severely sexist church and private school system, that phrase (or a variation of it) came up as well, but often with a much different subject. Rather than discussing the complexities of addressing public violence, this thought was often attached to domestic violence, crimes against children, and bullying. People prided themselves on making gestures to “forgive” and “show compassion” to the perpetuators of these acts. When it came time to address the victims though, they were not just silent, they found a dozen ways to communicate blame. By the last hour of the book though, I had to admit that I was stuck on the phrase “victim and victimizer alike” not because of what the book was actually talking about, but because of how other people have used that sentiment. Ultimately, it was a refreshing way to dwell on a core value that drives a good portion of my life – that we do ourselves, and society, a service when we seek to see people in as much of their entirety as we are able to see them, rather than hastily label and pigeonhole those around us.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Hilda O. 08-01-15
    Hilda O. 08-01-15 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The author is as angelic as a person can become"

    An amazing story of love and dedication to young people lost in life. I found it riveting

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rosa 07-23-15
    Rosa 07-23-15 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    14
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Funny and inspiring"

    Author truly catches the essence of the stories. The stories make you cry, laugh, and shake your head. Great listen.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer United States 07-19-15
    Kindle Customer United States 07-19-15 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    30
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    63
    53
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I just could not get into this. I really wanted to"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    I didn't care for the narrrator and the story was not compelling enough for me to stay interested.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jared 07-07-15
    Jared 07-07-15
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    5
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Human"

    If you need a reminder of God's love in a sometimes heartless world, this book is for you.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ryan's Mom Sacramento, Ca 07-01-15
    Ryan's Mom Sacramento, Ca 07-01-15 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    28
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    57
    20
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    2
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Love this book!"

    So much better in audio. Read this once a year for your soul It will restore you

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Auburn, CA United States 07-01-15
    Amazon Customer Auburn, CA United States 07-01-15 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    50
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Simply Stunning"

    I can't image anyone having a heart so hardened that this book will not move it. . . And move it in ways that can only soften it.

    After listening to this book (twice) I find it hard to recommend anything other than Gregory Boyle's (author) audio version. Having lived this story his interpretation and inflections are perfect! I've no doubt I will listen again and again.

    I personally believe this book to be deserving of several audio awards.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D&G 06-26-15
    D&G 06-26-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    16
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    21
    9
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "I listen again and again"

    This is a book that is good for the soul. The most beloved audiobook and my more than 200 book library. Get it listen to it share it with others.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A. Gutierrez Panorama City, CA USA 06-25-15
    A. Gutierrez Panorama City, CA USA 06-25-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Exceeded expectations"

    It's the best book that addresses gangs, Without making it about gangs. I listened to the book twice, the best so far.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.