The Prison Book Club

Pages: 304
Subject: Anthropology, Literature
Imprint: Oneworld

The Prison Book Club

Ann Walmsley

Read your favourite books as you've never read them before - over the

shoulders of dangerous criminals

9781780748634 (7 Apr 2016)
RRP £8.99

The Book

*Winner of the 2016 Edna Staebler Award for Non-Fiction*

How to start a book club in a men's prison? After a violent mugging, Ann Walmsley was understandably anxious when her friend set one up and asked her to help. But curiosity got the better of her, and she signed up. And this wasn't to be a typical book club - there would be no wine and cheese, no plush furniture and no superficial chat about recent holidays. Instead, classic works of fiction and non-fiction - from The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time to Three Cups of Tea - became springboards for frank discussions about loss, anger, identity and loneliness, and for the men a prized oasis in which to regain a sense of humanity.

Follow Graham the biker, Frank the gunman, Ben and Dread the drug dealers and the robber duo Gaston and Peter as they share ideas and reveal their life stories in this heartwarming example of the rehabilitative power of reading.

Additional Information

Subject Anthropology, Literature
Pages 304
Imprint Oneworld


About the Author

Ann Walmsley is a magazine journalist whose work has appeared in The Globe and Mail and Maclean's. She is the recipient of four National Magazine Awards, a Canadian Business Journalism Award and two International Regional Magazine Awards. She founded her first book club at age nine.


‘A testament to what reading together can do... Walmsley shows how reading and rehabilitation can go hand-in-hand.'

- Times Literary Supplement

Reveals the redemptive power of reading, with unexpected and morally acute insights from some of Canada's most fierce criminals.'

- The Lady

‘A terrific read that offers a glimpse into a world that is at once constricted yet capable of great emotional generosity.' 

- Steven Galloway, author of The Cellist of Sarajevo

‘A soulful exploration of men's hearts and minds…Funny and full of insight…A wonderful read.'

- Ann Dowsett Johnston, author of Drink: The Intimate Relationship Between Women and Alcohol