David Cuthbertson grows up in Manchester, southside, but quickly learns the shame of his father's violence against his mother. His father disappears after an event in the kitchen, and at sixteen, David is forced to leave school to take up work on the docks. There his life is irrevocably changed when a student dies in a pub brawl.
In prison he becomes leader of the power group, a role in which he must use all his skills of mental and physical agility. Framed for child abduction, he is brought face-to-face with Ann Thomas, a Wizard of Deception Detection. She takes up David's cause, eventually proving the duplicity of those who would rather he remain incarcerated.
The book contains elements of the TV series 'Porridge', the Shawshank Redemption (Frank Darabont), A Beautiful Mind (Sylvia Nasar) and Watership Down (Richard Adams). Some of the characters are shared with another book, 'A diary with a difference', though each book is self-contained.
This is a lovely book written in Martin's very masculine style, a book about conquering odds, finding love and the unique twists that can change an ordinary person into someone special. Those who've read 'A Diary with a Difference' will enjoy the link to that book.
Jill Smith, Gold Coast Writers Association.
|Product dimensions:||6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.50(d)|
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Reviewed by Jack Magnus for Readers' Favorite "Portrait of a Prisoner" by Martin Line opens with the sentencing of David Cuthbertson to 7 years in prison for a crime he did not commit. David is a dock worker who could have been much more had his family situation been more stable. He is a gifted artist and has an aptitude for science and mathematics. When David arrives in prison, he is fortunate in getting a cellmate who becomes his prison mentor as well as his friend. David becomes a force for good in the prison: establishing the Orphans, a group that help non-gang prisoners survive, talking a distraught prisoner off a roof after learning that his wife would leave him, and setting up a fund that would help ex-cons set up small businesses or find work and prosper after they are released. "Portrait of a Prisoner" is a riveting read, one I did not want to put down and was sorry to finish. Line creates real characters, both the heroes and villains, and there are both in this story. I particularly enjoyed David's imaginary cafe and looked forward to passages where Plato and Socrates would play with their coffee and discuss math, gravity and other topics. It was fun to see Plato employing Socratic method on Socrates. I love math and enjoyed any references to David's interests in that field; however, those who hate math will be relieved to find little actual math in "Portrait of a Prisoner". This is a positive and enlightening book, which was somewhat surprising given the title. It was surely an absolute delight to read. I highly recommend it.