"Daddy is going to camp. That's what I told my children. A child psychologist suggested it. "Words like prison and jail conjure up dangerous images for children," she explained. But it wasn't camp. It was prison."Neil White's memoir of doing time at Carville for bank fraud is a very eye-opening and thought-provoking look into the prison system, the lives of prisoners, and also into the lives of people afflicted by leprosy.
Because Carville is not only for federal inmates, it is also a hospital and a leper colony.
Carville is beautiful but it is full of what society deems to be ugly people- criminals and disfigured leprosy patients. White decides to use his time at Carville as a journalist, learning the stories of the outcasts of Carville. He makes friends with people he never would have known on the outside. He weaves together a story that makes the reader take pause and consider their own prejudices, their own personal failures, and their own need for something more than what they are given.
Although I thought the pace slowed down in places, overall, the book was fascinating and really made me think about my own life. How many choices have I made that could have landed me somewhere different had I chosen differently? Only every choice I've ever made. How many times have I even ever given much thought to prisoners or leprosy patients either one? Hardly a passing thought. It made me realize how little I know of what being a true "outcast" is like. Sure, I've felt like an outcast when I was in high school, and sure I've felt different because I have a disability. But the challenges that these people face are vastly different and more intense.
I probably never would have made the connection between the stigmas of criminals and leprosy patients had I not read this book. I recommend it and I look forward to reading your thoughts, too.
TLC Book Tour Schedule for In the Sanctuary of Outcasts:
Wednesday, June 2nd: Book Nook Club
Wednesday, June 9th: Jenn’s Bookshelves
Thursday, June 10th: Lit and Life
Monday, June 14th: Heart 2 Heart
Thursday, June 17th: Tales of a Capricious Reader
Tuesday, June 22nd: lit*chick
Wednesday, June 23rd: Lost in Books
Thursday, June 24th: Wordsmithonia
Monday, June 28th: Michelle’s Masterful Musings
Tuesday, June 29th: Chocolate & Croissants
Wednesday, June 30th: A Bookshelf Monstrosity
BOOK #: 40
RATING: 4 Stars
INCLUDED FOR THESE CHALLENGES: 100+ in 2010, Memoir Challenge, New Authors Challenge
HEY, FCC!: I was given this book for review for this book tour. I was not compensated monetarily.