I originally placed this book on hold on OPL’s website and moments after I did so I decided to cancel the hold and just order it on Indigo. I am so glad I did. To anyone entering the world of the Canadian criminal justice system, or are just interested in learning about the prison system, this is a must read. In fact, I believe this book should be required reading in Canadian correctional worker programs.
Linden MacIntyre tells Ty Conn’s story in the way that it deserves to be told; with dignity and veracity. I am of the belief that the reason we don’t hear about Ty’s story in the media is because it shines a giant floodlight on just how broken the criminal justice system and “corrections” are. If a person as intelligent, introspective, empathetic, and conscientious as Ty Conn couldn’t be successfully rehabilitated, then there is no hope for the average hardened criminals who have but a fraction of the qualities that Ty had. As the reader finds out, the prison system isn’t so much about maintaining public safety as it is about preserving the illusion of public safety.
I ran the gamut of emotions while reading this book; I laughed, I teared up, I shook my head and clenched my jaw in anger and disbelief at some of the people Ty had the grave misfortune of knowing. I was also mesmerized and fascinated by his spunk, his ingenuity, and his ability to remain fundamentally genuine despite his twisted and hellish circumstances. Within the authors, Ty found true friendship, and in true friendship fashion, they never sensationalize, misrepresent, or exploit him. Ty’s story deserves to be witnessed by us. He was not a hardened criminal. He was a good-hearted person who was failed miserably by many and made some poor decisions along the way.
I only wish I was old enough at the time to write to him and befriend him myself.
Rest In Peace, Ty. <3
An excellent Canadian story about the prison system, and the only person to successfully break out of Kingston Pen. Set in Eastern Ontario with a considerable amount in Ottawa. Highly recommended.
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