This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Book Donation Program, which was created to help nonprofit and charitable organizations (schools, libraries, convalescent homes, soldier donation programs, etc.) by providing them with free books and to help authors garner more exposure for their work. This author is willing to donate free copies of their book in exchange for reviews (if circumstances allow) and the knowledge that their book is being read and enjoyed. To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email. Be sure to tell the author who you are, what organization you are with, how many books you need, how they will be used, and the number of reviews, if any, you would be able to provide.
Reviewed by Viga Boland for Readers' Favorite
As one person commented on Zap Tales' blog, “I honestly don’t know where to begin.” The Fourth Side: A Prison Odyssey zapped me too…and how! When I began reading, I knew I was about to enter a world I knew only from movies and TV and once I finished reading this superb book, I knew one other thing for sure: those movies and TV shows didn’t even come close to the reality of a life behind bars, and for many of the inmates, the life they led before they ended up behind bars as well. The Fourth Side: A Prison Odyssey is a straight from the gut series of connected stories that detail, often graphically, what really goes on inside the prison system. Readers will find themselves thinking that those incarcerated are merely the criminals who got caught, tried and sentenced while the real criminals are the ones responsible for their becoming criminals and, once imprisoned, for keeping them criminals.
Many of these inmates, in fact more than 90% of them, turned to a life of crime because of the crimes committed against them when they were still children. They suffered mental, physical and sexual abuse at the hands of people they trusted who were supposed to love them: their parents and/or guardians. No story in the book illustrates this more than the last one about Adam. While Americans are still in shock over the mass shooting that occurred at the Parkland, Florida school on February 14, 2018, one only has to read Adam’s story for a possible explanation of how one teen could take an AR-15 rifle and massacre fellow students and teachers.
Readers come away from The Fourth Side: A Prison Odyssey shocked and saddened, but enlightened. It’s a marvellous thing the author, currently serving a life sentence for murder, has done by publishing this book, the proceeds of which go to various charities including Make-a-Wish and Autism Speaks. A gifted writer, a true wordsmith, Zap Tales raises awareness of the tremendous abuse being suffered by children everywhere and how this abuse can lead children to a life behind bars. This is one of the most important and eye-opening books I have ever read. I encourage all readers to buy it and read it. You’ll never forget it.