A Prison Diary

  • by Jeffrey Archer
  • Narrated by Martin Jarvis
  • 7 hrs and 25 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

On July 19, 2001, Jeffrey Archer - international best selling author - is sentenced to four years in prison for perjury. He becomes Prisoner FF8282 and spends the first three weeks of his sentence in a high-security prison that houses some of Britain's most violent criminals. During those twenty-two days, Archer contemplates suicide; he is allowed out and followed by 100 reporters on the day of his mother's funeral; he's moved to the Lifer's wing because of the security it provides; he becomes a trusted confidant for fellow convicts; and his cellmate sells a story about him to the British tabloids. A Prison Diary is Archer's account of these events.

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What the Critics Say

"Gruesome, touching, sharply written." (Sunday Telegraph)
"Strong narrative and good writing make this memoir an intriguing and engaging version of the often-trite prison journal." (Publishers Weekly)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

A Worthwhile Listen

As an American who doesn't really follow British politics, I have to admit general ignorance about the details of Jeffrey Archer's case when I saw this book listed on Audible.com's site. A little internet research turned up his story, and the fact that he had just recently been released from prison. Sounded interesting, and so I ordered it. First off, the narrative is outstanding, and brings to life Archer's story. As to the content, it was very good. Not outstanding, but very good. Archer has a very readable (or listenable in this case) style, which gives one a feel of what it was like for a man used to rubbing elbows with England's aristocracy to end up among murderers, drug dealers, and rapists. Writing in diary format is not alway easy, but Archer pulls it off. And again, Martin Jarvis's narrative, down to the voices he used to imitate the other prisoners, added to the story. On the downside, Archer clearly had a political axe to grind, directing comments on his perceived atrocities of the British penal system to "Mr. Home Secretary." That notwithstanding, much lucid insight into what it means to go without something many of us take for granted - our personal freedom.
Recommended.
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- Jeffrey

A tale of culture shock

This book gives a very detailed account of the first few weeks of a privileged Englishman?s incarceration in a common British prison. It?s not exactly exciting, but it does paint a comprehensive picture. I am no fan of the British upper classes, so I listened out of sheer curiosity to see how he would survive.

Jeffrey Archer suffered a very sudden and dramatic culture shock, and bore up extremely well. By his own account he accepted his new life, made the best of it, learned from it, contributed to it, was starting to become very interested in prison reform, and I'd have to call him "a good sport". I ended up respecting his ability to adapt and avoid self-pity.

I checked on the Internet and Jeffrey Archer is out of prison now. He has become an extremely controversial figure, facing constant public censure from upper and lower classes alike. I am now quite curious to see how he will survive his disgrace, and whether he will manage to continue his efforts for prison reform.
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- Anon

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-22-2003
  • Publisher: Phoenix Books