This was a great listen and I couldn't put it down. I can't wait to learn more about the West Memphis 3 and see the documentaries produced about this case.
My only complaint about the performance is that Damien's voice is a little monotonous, and his pronunciation of the words "huge" and "human" got on my nerves. "Yooman" for example.
That said, considering he spent most of his adult life in prison, and wasn't a good student in high school, he is an excellent writer with a gift for words.
Damien Nichols is an eloquent writer, his story telling is poetic. He shares the intimate details of a life so full of tragedy it becomes even more remarkable that he not only survives but through it all transforms into an introspective, thoughtful and spiritual human being,
Leaning about the inhuman confinement practices of the US prison system and the long term impact on the inmates.
A transformative story about the human spirits ability to thrive and evolve in spite of a broken and corrupt judicial system that systematically destroys the prisoner through its inhuman practices.
The fact that the west Memphis three are free. I feel bad at times for the state of Arkansas to see what type of prosecutors and judges they have. Its a huge discredit to the whole judicial system on the state.
The Devils Knot
Im not sure I have a favorite. The entire story is good and I hope nothing but the best for the west Memphis 3
The Judicial idiots in Arkansas!!!!!!!!!!!!!
How come the prosecuting attorney, Police officers, the Judge isn't behind bars?????
Mr. Middle Earth
A gut-wrenching story of a tragedy comprised among tragedies... and Damien manages to not only keep his sanity, but he even grows as a human being among animals would-be gods.
Damien Echols spent 18 years on death row for a crime he (and his friends) did not commit. See how this happened in our "justice" system, and do what you can to keep it from happening again.
Damien Echols tells his story - a tale of being a poor boy in Arkansas who was sentenced to die for a crime he did not commit. The good parts were the story of his life before being imprisoned. This was interwoven with snippets of life on death row. After he is convicted, there is a lot more on life in prison. Echols focuses much on his state of mind. He is self-educated and a deep thinker, and I enjoyed this. Both his upbringing and imprisonment were depressing, but interesting. Now, my complaints. The second half of the book had so much about prison life, and the injustice and immorality of the treatment from sadistic guards. He seemed to repeat this theme and similar stories for a long time. My other complaint - he skipped almost every detail of his arrest and trial and conviction. We are told that he had an alibi for the time of the murder, but we don't hear much about why that was never brought up in the original trial. What was his lawyer like (except incompetent and eager to not anger the judge). Why was Echols picked as the scapegoat? Was he found in the wrong place at the wrong time? This book addresses almost none of this. And then suddenly there was an HBO movie about his plight. How did that come about? What changed to convince many he was innocent?
So, I heard too much about some stuff and not enough about other stuff. I was left a little bored and a little frustrated by the book's end. Echols makes a good case for the failure of the legal adversary system. As so often happens, the prosecution is more interested in a win than in justice, and I hope that books like this and PR from the Innocence Project will change things.
I'm a 50ish mom of 2 wonderful young men and work as tech support in a public middle school. I love reading with an eclectic choice of books
The story is touching, raw, and at times brutal. So much more than just the story of an innocent man. Damien tells the history of his childhood, his journal of the atrocities of our judicial system in his life on death row (not roll, lol). He has grown into an astounding man with great passion in spite of what he was put him through by continuing to study and work his brain during his 18 years of hell. HE NEVER GAVE UP! The main reason he is still alive today, that and a wonderful woman named Lori.
It helps to know the background story of the WM3 before reading this book. You can get that by watching the three Paradise Lost documentaries which are on YouTube, reading the book Devil's Knot, or just looking at the data on the internet.
There are times Echols seems to ramble and it is a bit wordy, but very good for his first time with the pen. I look forward to reading more from him and watching him grow as an author.
Personally I also want to wish him and his wife a happy life.
I prefered the audio version because Damien himself read it. It was very cool to hear him tell his story in just the way he wanted to.
My favorite part was all of his childhood memories. I also loved how enthusiastic he was about autumn and the holidays.
One scene that stuck out the most to me that I don't think I'll ever forget is the story of his mother amputating the family cat's leg.
Yes! Couldn't get enough of it.
Say something about yourself!
I have already re-listened to this book several times. I love the way Damien communicates and makes you feel like you have known him for years. The content is so extreme it would make even the most optimistic go to a dark place but Damien explains his highs his lows and everything in between during his experience as being falsely accused for more then 18 years!
it was funny! How could something so terrible have any glimmer of smiles but Damiens sense of humor and I like to say southern-isms makes you eager to hear more!
YES, it makes you think, laugh, cry, angry. I usually don't have reactions to books like this. I am truly sad that it's over. I wish he would keep writing.
please listen to this book, it will change you!!
This guys voice is so awesome. It's the perfect voice to tell his own story.
It's interesting to hear who he admires and his experiences growing up to now. If you're wanting a lot of case information I don't feel like a ton of info is here (it's definitely there just not lengthy.) I think that's the point though, to be about him and not the case.
My only complaint would be that he uses metaphors beautifully but way too often.