Excerpt from A Prison Diary

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On to my teaser. Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Read the rules and more teasers at The Purple Booker. Anyone can play along.

I don’t read a lot of memoirs, but this is one that caught my eye. Jeffrey Archer is a bestselling fiction author, but he has also published nonfiction accounts of the time he spent in prison for a perjury conviction. Interesting reading if you want to hear some of the details of life behind bars. I just recently started the first book, A Prison Diary, yesterday.

I think about the verdict, and the fact that it never crossed my mind even for a moment that the jury could find Francis innocent and me guilty of the same charge. How could we have conspired if one of us didn’t realize a conspiracy was taking place?

A Prison Diary, by Jeffrey Archer

On July 19, 2001, following a conviction for perjury, international bestselling author Jeffrey Archer was sentenced to four years in prison. Prisoner FF8282, as Archer is now known, spent the first three weeks in the notorious HMP Belmarsh, a high-security prison in South London, home to murderers, terrorists and some of Britain’s most violent criminals.

On the last day of the trial, his mother dies, and the world’s press accompany him to the funeral. On returning to prison, he’s placed on the lifer’s wing, where a cellmate sells his story to the tabloids. Prisoners and guards routinely line up outside his cell to ask for his autograph, to write letters, and to seek advice on their appeals.

For twenty-two days, Archer was locked in a cell with a murderer and a drug baron. He decided to use that time to write an hour-by-hour diary, detailing the worst three weeks of his life.

When A Prison Diary was published in England, it was condemned by the prison authorities, and praised by the critics.

Comments

  1. I did not know he went to prison. Sounds like an interesting read.

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