crime · Prison story

*BLOG TOUR* Diary Of A Prison Officer – Josie Channer ★★★★

Blurb; It’s 2003, Tony Blair is still Prime Minister and a shy loner from east London, Amber Campbell, joins the prison service searching for purpose.

Behind the walls of the women’s prison Amber is determined to prove that she has what it takes to become a tornado officer. She makes a pact with two close friends to support each other no matter what. However, the three Black women struggle when they experience discrimination and disappointment at every turn.

There is rising racial tension in her home town when far right local councillors are elected. Amber reflects on the prison system in her blog and takes an emotional journey off the beaten track through Africa to find love.

My Review; WOW. If you’ve been following me for a while you will know that true crime and anything about prisons I LOVE. It’s just really interesting to me so I knew this was right up my street.

I loved the lay out of the whole story. It is written in diary entries from the past of her time working in a prison to the present where she is touring Africa. It does feature a lot of race issues and some political situations too. It’s honest. Part’s are brutal. It gives you a really good view into life working in an all womans prison. The ending was huge and had me holding my breathe to see the outcome. It also highlights how important friendships are.

An easy read, page turner. Very interesting and I look up to this woman although the book is fiction it is based off the authors life experiences so to me makes it more real! Amazing for everything she went through and stood up for. Highly recommend. A well deserved four stars from me.

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crime · Non-Fiction · Prison story

34 Years in Hell: My Time Inside America’s Toughest Prisons – Jamie Morgan Kane ★★★★

Blurb; In July 1983 James Morgan Kane returned home in the evening to find a corpse in his living room. Fearing that he would be blamed and sensing that his wife was somehow involved, he wanted to do all to protect his young family. Jamie worked through the night to dispose of the body all the while disbelieving the situation he found himself in. His luck ran out days later as he was arrested and sentenced to 13 years in prison. Jamie entered the U.S. prison system and was to stay there for 34 years with stints in San Quentin, Folsom State Prison and the notorious Deuel Vocational Institution (DVI) in California. He would rub shoulders with some of the world’s most infamous serial killers such as Charles Manson, Edmund Kemper, Charles Tex Watson and Herbie Mullin as well as gangs such as the Aryan Brotherhood and Mexican cartels. This book tells of his time: locked up with no hope of release, living the brutality of the unforgiving penitentiary system and finding his new purpose in life, as well as tales of his many run-ins with some of the world’s most dangerous inmates.

My Review; This is a non-fiction, real life story. It starts off more a biography of his life before the arrest and prison. He hasn’t had an easy childhood at all. Then we move on to the arrest and prison side to the story. If you’ve been following my blog a while you will know prison interests me so I love to read them and the stories within them. They’re intriguing to me.

Throughout reading this I really felt sorry for Jamie. What a brave, strong and determined man. He was moved between so many prisons in the 34 years and denied bail so many times, but he never gave up and I applaud him for that. He experienced many fights and battles along the way. It all paid off in the end. The ending we all wanted and needed. A story to tell. He hasnt let it effect his freedom now, instead after his release in 2018 he decided to share his story with us all.

I think America has a huge problem with their prison system that needs to be looked into further. An eye-opening, real read! Well deserverd four stars from me. Highly recommend. What a man. What a story.

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Emotional · Prison story · Young adult

Moonrise – Sarah Crossan ★★★★★

Blurb; Seventeen-year-old Joe hasn’t seen his brother in ten years. Ed didn’t walk out on the family, not exactly. It’s something more brutal.

Ed’s locked up — on death row.

Now his execution date has been set, and the clock is ticking. Joe is determined to spend those last weeks with his brother, no matter what other people think … and no matter whether Ed committed the crime. But did he? And does it matter, in the end?

This poignant, timely, heartbreaking novel asks big questions: What value do you place on life? What can you forgive? And just how do you say goodbye?

My Review; This book didn’t just break my heart it tore it out and stomped all over it. Utterly heartbreaking. This one made me shed a tear. How cruel laws, lies and life can be. I would recommend this book to each and everyone of you. We can all take something away from reading this.

There are some big questions within this story which really make you think. Also the fact that what actually happened in this book still happens today around the world and how it doesn’t just affect one life, it creates a ripple and affects those around them. You really feel for each and every character in this story all experiencing the same thing but in different ways.

I don’t think I will ever be able to forget this story? It really is hard hitting and emotional. Highly recommend! A well deserved five stars and a place in my top twenty reads of the year.

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