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Publisher's Summary

Before Angalia Bianca became one of Chicago's foremost authorities on violence interruption and prevention, receiving international recognition and a Resolution for Bravery from the City of Chicago, she was a criminal, a master manipulator, and a brilliant con artist. Bianca spent 12 years in prison for forgery, embezzlement, drug dealing, and theft. But now she has gone far beyond the expectations for recovery to a life of service fueled by an unrelenting determination to make a difference.   

Bianca was once a gang member; now she puts her life on the line to interrupt gang violence. For 36 years she was a heroin addict; now she mentors people in recovery. She was homeless; now she appears as an invited guest to speak at events across the country and around the world. Bianca crawled out of the deepest hole imaginable; now through her work with the renowned violence prevention group Cure Violence, she climbs back down to change lives.  

In Deep is a blunt, honest look at Bianca's life. Her mind-blowing stories take listeners deep into a world of grit and gang violence that seems inescapable. Her story is at once fascinating, terrifying, and ultimately full of hope.

©2018 Angalia Bianca and Linda Beckstrom; Foreword copyright 2018 by Kevin Gates and Dreka Gates (P)2018 Tantor

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An apology for her life

The entire book reads like a persuasive essay and the topic is "Why Angela Bianca is an amazing person". I disliked how, even though she denounces the criminal lifestyle, she praised her own criminal activities and constantly patted herself on the back for her ingenuity in coming up with new get-rich schemes. She portrays herself as a tough white girl and constantly validates herself as an accepted member of various gangs, ascribing respect to her person that probably never existed. I can't count the number of times she said something along the lines of "They laughed, but I could see respect behind the bravado". Yeah lady, I'm pretty sure they were just laughing. At the end of the book, she lists all the awards she won by becoming a violence interrupter and talks about how all her family slowly accepted her again. There were moments of sincere sorrow for what she lost in her lifestyle, but the majority of the book was bravado and justification for her actions. In all, I found this book to be a self-flattering piece of work written by a delusional woman who, to paraphrase, was always meant to wear a power suit. It was written by a woman who needed to rewrite her life in a positive way but, in this reader's opinion, need not be read by others.

14 people found this helpful

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You are an unfit parent

I cringed through most of this- so very arrogant. The author came from basically a loving family and life of privilege- to stomping on those in her community and laughing in the face of those harmed. She had so many chances to to keep and raise a child, to stop hurting her community and family, and to become sober....chances that so many others never have. She doesn't represent, in my opinion, anyone but a privileged, wealthy, Caucasian woman whose dad, extended family, and money got her out of difficult situations. The damage is minimized she left shrapnel everywhere. As a Social Worker I can attest that she is an "unfit parent". She lost multiple children (I couldn't keep count), most through CPS involvement. Sure she can think she had some control and "pride" (huh?) that she "signed adoption paperwork"- but thats her own delusion. Her parental rights were terminated by the Juvenile Court- for a reason- she was unfit. She gave birth to drug addicted babies. She abandoned her children as they were growing up. She did not look back as everyone else took care of them- including the tax money of her community. For some of her children, such as Aliyah, she put her baby through the long term challenges of being born heroin addicted. Has she ever witnessed a baby withdrawing from heroin? This baby's first impression of the world is that of pain, helplessness, and unpredictability. Some babies don't survive, others have to be tapered off with such a struggle- often put on anti-seizure medication. Then, she choose to insist she hold this toddler-who doesn't know her- in the courtroom- while in shackles. How SELFISH. Later she chose to put this child through more stress and PTSD. Then, as if it can't get any worse, she had the audacity to make a comment about the social worker taking the baby and having a "long day"- as if the process of detaining her child is worse than what she has done. How clueless and narcissistic. Wow, the suffering one person can wreck over a family and a community, unreal. Damage has been done. Interesting, like a train wreck. Lots of patting her own back after stabbing others in their back.

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Thrilling

I prefer memoirs (like this one) that explain the authors time spent doing drugs and getting into trouble, rather than recovery. I like the stories. This one did not disappoint.

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Fantastic

This book was so detailed. I felt I could actually see it in a movie in my head . She can make her words feel! This is a book that will make you feel the pain and generation of it’s time .

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crazy beautiful

I appreciate this book so much and can relate to it in many ways. thank you for this wonderful life story and congrats on the success in life you have accomplished and moved on to. blessed be.

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Brutally honest without the fluffy BS!

As a recovering alcoholic, or any addict- it is a straight up honest look into the eyes of the devil. But also proves, when you ask God for help, He will help you!❤️

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loved it hoe a bout a book 2?

will be sharing with my sister in law in Cicero she helps with addicts and clean needle services as well. her name in Matta she awesome just like you

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If Bianca's Goal is to Help Someone Every Day...

... she succeeded again today. What a powerful, moving journey. Thanks for talking this reader along for the ride.

Narration was awesome, so appropriately emotive at every turn, particularly those situations where her desperation or despair was palpable; I actually did think it was the author speaking, and was surprised a bit at the end where it mentions the narrator's name.

I really enjoyed this book. Bianca is a badass, and a chameleon when it comes to deciding the best way to handle any situation. Her ability to talk to people - everyone - on their level (from street hoods to politicians) is a gift.

Apparently so is her writing.

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Well written - I highly recommend it

I love nonfiction and especially memoirs. This book is well written and gritty. I had a really hard time putting the book down. Bianca takes you through her insatiable appetite for heroine, big money con games, rocking out with Rolling Stones, Iggy Pop and other big time rock band, Chicago gangs, and several stints in the penitentiary. At age 52, she decides to get clean and finds her life’s purpose by helping Chicago gangs lower or deescalate their violence.
I listened to The Audible version and the narrator is perfect. I highly recommend this book.

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Never wrote review before

As someone who is from Chicago and went to high school where she did I appreciate how raw and real she is and doesn’t hold back. It’s not for faint hearted.

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  • LBlanco
  • 11-06-18

We are all survivors.

A beautiful master piece of the art of living and how precious is this adventure called life.

No matters how difficult it can be sometimes that there is always a small ray of light and hope in the darkness. Just listen to your heart and be true to yourself and others. Be kind, love and let people love and help you. Be patient, time will help and a better moment will come.

Follow your intuition. It is very powerful. We are very powerful. Do not forget how beautiful you are when problems come. They will always come. That is what life is about. We are here to learn from experience so be grateful afterwards because you will become smarter with more compassion and kindness to yourself and the rest of the world. That's a true gift.

Thank you Bianca for sharing your story. I wish you all the best for your recovery in all the areas of your life. You are a very strong woman and your help is needed and appreciated.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-23-19

Powerful

I really enjoyed this story because of how real and raw it is. I was looking for a story that described addictions without leaving anything out and I found it

1 person found this helpful

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  • Alan Ismail
  • 06-27-20

Loved it !!!

This book was awesome !!! really touches you deep ... a powerful story of redemption. It will make you laugh & cry. The narration was very good. I strongly recommend this book ...