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Publisher's Summary

In this “celebration of a life fully lived” (Reyna Grande, author of The Distance Between Us), discover the full, fascinating, and inspirational true story of Danny Trejo’s journey from crime, prison, addiction, and loss—it’s “enough to make you believe in the possibility of a Hollywood ending” (The New York Times Book Review).

On screen, Danny Trejo the actor is a baddie who has been killed at least a hundred times. He’s been shot, stabbed, hanged, chopped up, squished by an elevator, and once, was even melted into a bloody goo. Off screen, he’s a hero beloved by recovery communities and obsessed fans alike. But the real Danny Trejo is much more complicated than the legend.

Raised in an abusive home, Danny struggled with heroin addiction and stints in some of the country’s most notorious state prisons—including San Quentin and Folsom—from an early age, before starring in such modern classics as Heat, From Dusk till Dawn, and Machete. Now, in this funny, painful, and suspenseful memoir, Danny takes us through the incredible ups and downs of his life, including meeting one of the world’s most notorious serial killers in prison and working with legends like Charles Bronson and Robert De Niro.

An honest, unflinching, and “inspirational study in the definition of character” (Kevin Smith, director and actor), Trejo reveals how he managed the horrors of prison, rebuilt himself after finding sobriety and spirituality in solitary confinement, and draws inspiration from the adrenaline-fueled robbing heists of his past for the film roles that made him a household name. He also shares the painful contradictions in his personal life. Although he speaks everywhere from prison yards to NPR about his past to inspire countless others on their own road to recovery and redemption, he struggles to help his children with their personal battles with addiction, and to build relationships that last.

Redemptive and painful, poignant and real, Trejo is a portrait of a magnificent life and an unforgettable and exceptional journey that proves “though we may fall down at some point in our lives, it’s what we do when we stand back up that really counts” (Robert Rodriguez, filmmaker and producer).

©2021 Danny Trejo. All rights reserved (P)2021 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved

Featured Article: Starstruck? The 50 Greatest Celebrity Memoirs of All Time Are Here


The best celebrity memoir audiobooks are in a league of their own. This competitive genre continues to evolve and innovate as more stars discover the power of audio, often blending memoir with comedy, self-development, social critique, and exclusive performances. The star-studded list of celebrity memoirs will not disappoint as the real stories of your favorite celebrities are revealed in their own words and voices.

Editor's Pick

One of this year’s most powerful memoirs
You’ve likely seen Danny Trejo kill or be killed countless times in movies. Even if you don’t recognize his name, his face is one you never forget, and for an actor who didn’t get his start until his 40s, Trejo has amassed an impressive 300+ acting credits. But that’s the ''happily ever after part'' of this memoir. Now in his 70s, Trejo recounts his early years in his authentic, rugged voice that pulls no punches. From shooting up heroin at age 12 as an ''escape'' to spending most of his youth in some of the country’s most notorious prisons—Trejo himself is amazed he didn’t end up dead. The road to redemption was long and difficult. He never sugarcoats what he's been through and takes responsibility for the (often terrible) choices he made, and those he hurt. Listening to how he found the strength to get clean and sober and ultimately help others is incredibly inspiring. I certainly appreciated his brutal honesty. While the language may be too strong for some listeners, there’s no denying his storytelling is captivating and engaging. These are some of the wildest and craziest stories I've ever heard and would make for some killer films—someone make a Trejo biopic, pronto! —Edwin D., Audible Editor

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What listeners say about Trejo

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The best book ever!

I had been anticipating this book ever since I first heard it was coming out. The fact that Danny Trejo himself narrated it sealed the deal for me. I had already known much of a story since I’ve been a fan of his work in TV and movies but you know some of the other details about his life, his work with others and his family really painted a picture I don’t think I was ready for. I was in tears by the time the book was over, mr. Trejo’s infectious laughter and smile our gifts to humanity. He is a saint and I would love to one day thank him in person for allowing us to peek into his tremendous life.

21 people found this helpful

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Heart Broken 💔

First off let me say, I LOVE DANNY TREJO!!!’ I loved his story. I was so excited to listen to it in his own voice. I’ve seen him doing some inspirational talks and he was AMAZING. That being said, his narration was so bad🥺 I wish I could tell him to read the book like he would a script. But I’d still recommend it if you can get past the narration. You can’t see his sprit in this narration. But like I said, I LOVE DANNY TREJO💕

19 people found this helpful

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Chingon

Do yourself a favor. x1.50 speed.
Great story! Represents my culture in many of its complexities.

17 people found this helpful

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Who ever produced this needs an a$$ whopping

I love Danny big fan, but who ever was the engineer and editor, producer needs to be punched for not coaching him or taking more takes to perfect it and not make him sound like he just learned how to read. Great story but it's just a hard flow. Love the story and machete

11 people found this helpful

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I got shanked in the ear!

The reading of this book is a train wreck. It makes it sound like Danny didn’t live his own life, like reading and hearing it for the first time. Sounds like this is the first time Danny’s ever picked up a book. It’s absolutely insane what passes as good enough in 2021. Everyone involved should be ashamed…

9 people found this helpful

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Great Autobiography

Not usually a fan of non-fiction or Autobiography unless it is someone I know of and like. I knew Mr. Trejo’s general story but not a lot of the details. Not only is his story inspirational but also heartbreaking and beautiful. He does an excellent narration as well. I highly recommend this book.

9 people found this helpful

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Emotional

Danny was so amazing and open talking about all the good and bad in his life. Its amazing how raw he is about the ugly things he did, experienced and how humble he is about his redemption. love him as an actor and this made me love him as a fellow human.

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It a miracle that Danny Trejo is alive.

Right from the beginning I was invested in Danny Trejos life story. It’s a miracle that he survived his youth. I can see what a great inspiration he is to the young and addicted youth. His story is very real and interesting. Now I’m going to rewatch his movies.

4 people found this helpful

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Amazing

I truly believe God moves Mr. Trejo and his story is amazing and inspiring! Listening to his story is simply amazing!

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inspirational

I love Trejo all his movies his restaurants and his music cameos I am so glad we finally got to get a glimpse behind the curtain he is a great man and worked hard for what he has he is a true warrior

4 people found this helpful