Milk-Blood : Growing Up the Son of a Convicted Drug Trafficker

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"In that moment I knew the meaning of milk-blood. Desperate addicts will decant some of their own blood while the drug is still pumping through their veins to save as 'insurance' to inject later. This opiate-laden blood is called milk-blood."

Adrian Simon, 38, is the son of Warren Fellows, the infamous heroin smuggler who was imprisoned in Bangkwang Prison in Bangkok for 12 years and published the bestselling memoir "The Damage Done." But Adrian wasn't the only one affected by the experience. In his searing autobiography "Milk-Blood," Adrian tells his side of the story; growing up in suburban Australia the son of two unconventional parents, while trying to make sense of his father's terrible decisions and witnessing his mother shunned by society at every turn.

"It was his decisions that led to me having a nervous breakdown as an innocent child, and like a disease that experience clung to me throughout my life. And just like my arthritic condition, I had a bandaid solution but no cure. In a small way I could never be completely free of the past, he was my damage within that I would never be able to eradicate completely."

Refusing to give in to the dark shadow his father casts over his life, Adrian lives life to the full, and always on his own terms, right from the get-go. His inherent drive and thirst for adventure sees him abandoning school in favour of chasing the good times, wherever they may lie.

Later, this morphs into a deeper search for meaning and purpose, which sees him travel around the globe in a non-stop whirlwind of run-ins and adventures. But it's here, on the road, where he begins to make sense of his fractured life, righting the wrongs of his past and starting the painstaking task of restoring the damage done to his family chi.

"People rarely knew my story and how my emotions were like a river, a wild torrent boring through my soul. I grew to understand that we all have our own storm within, that we share the same path to find happiness and self-expression. Deep down, I knew one day I would tell this story. I just had to wait for more chapters to play out. I never thought of myself as a writer, rather as someone with a big story to tell."

This raw and honest work tackles complex issues and themes, such as mental health, addiction, and coming-of-age, but ultimately it is a story of love, hope, courage and the healing power of acceptance.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 284 pages
  • 152 x 229 x 16mm | 417g
  • English
  • Illustrations, black and white
  • 1925399001
  • 9781925399004
  • 290,477

Review quote

Wow! Just finished the book, Milk Blood: growing up the son of a convicted drug trafficker. Must read peoples. Brilliant true-story story by Adrian Simon. The words, the feelings, the undercurrents to so much more ... brilliant! Kinda like prequel / sequel to his father's book, The Damage Done, which sheds the light. Wow! Wow! Wow! David Morgan I am an avid reader of all genres of books. The writings of Adrian Simon, is one of the sharpest, topical and captivating autobiographies I have read in a long time. It is a raw and emotional story of a balanced and at times a dysfunctional life, it is gut wrenching but equally as light in other chapters. I loved this book, couldn't put it down. A genuine story of his family dynamics. Rachel Merriweather. I found Milk Blood to be a dynamic, bitter-sweet book that although an Aussie tale at heart, due to its rather amazing story firmly crosses over giving it broad appeal for an International audience. It's told with a unique voice that helps to bring a real sense of humanity to a subject matter that can often feel cold and intangible. It perfectly illustrates how the lives of family and others around us trickle down to deeply effect our own lives. How someone's bad decisions can so heavily impact and influence next generations. It has a truly kinetic feel as the narrative keeps moving forward apace, the structure is interesting also and helps to keep the readers interest piqued. I feel Milk Blood is a very original work that draws you in through its tall but true tales of criminality and excitement and hooks you with an emotional attachment to its protagonist. Heart wrenching at times it leaves you with a sense of positivity and a feeling you've been taken on a real journey. One you're not likely to forget in a hurry. James Johnson. Love how this story is written, so many juicy layers. The most ballsy true Autobiography I've ever read. It's a story of my generation, but stretches across and will touch the hearts of many. One of the most powerful relationships between mother and son beating the odds. An unbelievable strength and determination of a single mother. Adrian shaped himself well and managed to tell a complex story clearly and easily; especially considering the circumstances. It made me think about myself actually and put me into a deep thought process of my own. It allowed me to recognise and understand many challenges I had and it helped me a little with my struggles. Life's many challenges can put you in a bad place, Adrian's story managed to pick me up and made me realise things weren't that bad in my world. Modern storytelling in style and unique in voice. A real journey from beginning to end. Matt Robinson I know this man, he is me in many ways. My own childhood was strewn with so called dysfunction. Maybe it was our generation, perhaps we were forgotten, looked over. Or maybe we were lucky to feel and understand how it was in times past. My sixteen year old daughter doesn't know how good her generation has it. I want her to read 'Milk Blood' so she can see where I'm coming from, that life is full of challenges and unexpected turns. Sometimes it's downright impossible, then again, overcoming the seemingly impossible is achievable, and living free is within all our reach. This is one of the many telling messages I took from this powerful and uplifting story. The vast majority of autobiographies I read feel vanilla, soulless, as if someone else has taken someone's great stories and filled in the blanks missing the beat. Milk Blood kept my beat pulsing, dripping with substance from start to finish. The clever usage of interludes offering teasing glimpses into the past and future while keeping it present allowed a complex story to flow effortlessly. Not only a wide reaching socially conscious story, but a bloody cool one at that. A must read for all walks of life. Russel Doyle
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Rating details

42 ratings
4.59 out of 5 stars
5 71% (30)
4 19% (8)
3 7% (3)
2 2% (1)
1 0% (0)
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