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This book was downright scary. So, you think this can't happen to you? That wrongful conviction happens to someone else? That the person must be guilty of something, so that even if they weren't guilty of the specific crime that put them there, they deserve to be in prison?
Read these true stories and then answer those questions again.
I cannot even imagine what it must be like to have time taken away from you; while these people are often compensated in some form, that lost time can never be returned. Relationships destroyed, sometimes beyond repair; lost opportunities; loved ones who passed away, never to have seen the vindication of their loved one. Thank goodness for the innocence projects, although I am sure they are only able to help a small fraction of the innocent people who are spending their lives in jail.
This book ripped my heart out and put it back together again. It is everyone's worst nightmare - being imprisoned for something you didn't do. These ten stories are raw and beautiful, heartbreaking and hopeful. It's more than just about race or class, though many of those profiled here were poor and/or black. All of them found ways to cope with prison, whether keeping their heads down, fighting if necessary, or hiding themselves away with their legal case files. Much is made of what happened before the arrest; many of these individuals made their mistakes, were guilty of some crimes (just not the murders they were jailed for). Some found religion, others didn't. All were overwhelmed when they reentered the world outside, by how their family dynamics changed or the use of technology or all of the food that was available to them.
The author convincingly tells not only how things can go wrong - when a trial is about showmanship and the most persuasive orator "wins" at the expense of the truth - but where we can go from here.
Well-written, well-read, well worth your time, credit and action.