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The Prisoner's Wife: A Memoir
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The Prisoner's Wife: A Memoir

3.98  ·  Rating details ·  1,120 Ratings  ·  118 Reviews
How did a beautiful, talented college student fall in love with a man serving twenty to life for murder? And why did she marry him? At a time when one in four black men are caught in the web of the criminal justice system, Asha Bandele shatters the myths of prisoners' wives and tells a story of embracing the beauty of love in the ugliest circumstances and of people's abili ...more
Paperback, 219 pages
Published August 1st 2000 by Scribner (first published May 4th 1999)
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By far The Prisoner’s Wife is one of the saddest and most emotionally charged books I’ve read in the least few years. As I got about third of a way into asha bandele’s very introspective memoir, I thought to myself, this book is mainly for women. But as I read on, I thought, this is yet another book that should be taught in classrooms across America, or at least in the inner cities where so many young men and women live a daily life of hardship.

Few books are so seemingly honest and reflective a
Mar 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book left me gasping for air and swimming in emotions. Asha Bandeleis an incredibly gifted writer, and this novel is the journey of the heart, all the while struggling with her head, with her friends and family and practical awareness of the bleak reality of her love and her marriage. I felt as though she had ripped her beating heart right out of her chest and made me take a bite. The book raises such questions as humans have always wrestled: Is love all we need? Is true love the ultimate v ...more
Eva Leger
Apr 20, 2009 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: n/a
Recommended to Eva by: found it myself
This is one I'd give 2 and 1/2 stars to if I had the option. I don't think I've ever read a book written more beautifully than this. She has great talent when it comes to writing and that much is obvious on the very first page. But I don't like her. At all. Not even a little bit.
Most of the book I was able to understand and sympathize and whatnot while there were pieces, major pieces for me, that really bothered me. That bothered me to no end really.
When Bendele talked about Rashid being locke
Joanne Nunyabeeswax
Jul 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I myself am a prisoners wife. My heart is locked away in a New York prison . Asha's story although very detailed and graphic portrayed the daily struggle of being married to someone incarcerated. The expense, the separation, the long drives. I identified completely with her prison experience. She put in words the struggle and sadness known to few when someone decides not to abandon their loved one. She pointed out the inhuman treatment of wives by correctional staff who view us merely as scum. T ...more
Maya B
Mar 20, 2017 rated it liked it
An interesting look at what its like to love someone in prison. I always wondered how someone could love someone that long. this book definitely answered some of those questions. it feels like this book needs a followup. I struggled with the fact of was this love, sympathy, or empathy. I closed this book wondering how many relationships survive when that person is released from prison. I liked the reader's guide that followed the story
Jul 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I sat in the park reading this and by the end I was a blubbering emotional mess. It's so raw, emphasizing the power of love to help two people grow and fly beyond prison bars, while remaining grounded in the loneliness, despair, and difficulties. The last few pages had me sobbing because it was just too powerful. You really feel it with her, the slowly beginning to trust, and then the hope, and then the despair.

It just killed me. The way all the prisoners would tell their wives that they would
Oct 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
Over the weekend Jamaica had a little hurricane scare, or rather a big hurricane scare since at one point it did blow up to a Category 5, fortunately for us (unfortunately for Haiti) the worst was diverted and we only suffered tropical storm conditions.

However, due to the preparation required for the impending storm Jamaica was essentially on lockdown for Monday. This meant that I had some unexpected time in my hand and so in between studying, working on an assignment, and checking in with work
Rita Reinhardt
Apr 18, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is the first book I’ve attempted to read in one sitting! Whoa! Asha Bandele is definitely a poet first, and a writer second! She takes us deep inside the bowels of a love story...the place we fear to bring up in daily conversations, but yet know exist. The unions we gossip about, as we attempt to be supportive to our friends. The incredible journeys that every woman is curious of taking, but finds it extremely difficult to let go and let love. The place in which we can experience a piece of ...more
May 26, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well, this was refreshing!This memoir was very honest, very intense, and very realistic. I feel that Asha is very complex, she is hard to deal with sometimes. I often felt for Rashid for having to deal with prison time and her issues as well! And then comes the hard part of feeling anything for this couple and their trials knowing that there is a widow suffering alone because of this man... and while they complain about lack of freedom, not being able to be together, not being allowed to be inti ...more
Miss Fabularian
Feb 23, 2009 rated it really liked it
When I first began this book, I really wasn't impressed by the obvious poetic hyperboles that bandele was using to "beat-a-dead-horse". As I continued to read the book, I really began to enjoy her descriptiveness and passion which allowed me to truly hear bandele's voice. Sometimes her descriptiveness was overused and overdone, but she really had a way of expressing certain concepts in a new and interesting way. I appreciated her honesty to tell all the grit and glam of her journey to loving an ...more
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An award-winning author and journalist, asha bandele first attained recognition when she penned her 1999 debut book, The Prisoner’s Wife, a powerful, lyrical memoir about a young Black woman’s romance and marriage with a man who was serving a twenty-to-life sentence in prison. With the hope that they would live as a couple in the outside world, she became pregnant with a daughter. A former feature ...more
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