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A Prisoner of Birth

4.16  ·  Rating details ·  33,830 ratings  ·  2,459 reviews
International bestseller and master storyteller Jeffrey Archer is at the very top of his game in this story of fate and fortune, redemption and revenge.

If Danny Cartwright had proposed to Beth Wilson the day before, or the day after, he would not have been arrested and charged with the murder of his best friend. But when the four prosecution witnesses are a barrister, a po
Hardcover, 501 pages
Published March 4th 2008 by St. Martin's Press
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ctdak There is definitely not a lot of bad language in this story. Very little in fact. There are two "sex scenes", one or two sentences long with no detail…moreThere is definitely not a lot of bad language in this story. Very little in fact. There are two "sex scenes", one or two sentences long with no details.(less)
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Charlie I imagine the influence of his sister Sarah and also Davenport felt guilty about what happened; whereas Spencer and Gerald didn't...…moreI imagine the influence of his sister Sarah and also Davenport felt guilty about what happened; whereas Spencer and Gerald didn't...(less)

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Jan 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This story held me prisoner for hours!

It’s surprising that some authors/critics attempt to undermine Archer’s talent. His vocabulary is too simple, they say. Plot sequence is entirely too linear, they say. What they don’t understand is that he is foremost a STORYTELLER with the innate, almost intuitive, manner of weaving believable characters, relatable dialogue, and most importantly, outstanding plots.

Someone once said that a brilliant mind is known by its ability to communicate a complicated
Carol Ann
Mar 08, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Wow! I felt like a 13 year old reading the final installment of Harry Potter. Other than bathroom breaks and a quick dinner, I did not put this book down. Jeffrey Archer is a master with characters, twists and storys within storys. I am going to write a novel like this as soon as I can!

☘Misericordia☘ ⚡ϟ⚡⛈⚡☁ ❇️❤❣
“- My lord, if a man cannot express his honestly held views in the Central Criminal Court, perhaps you can advise me where else he is free to state that which he believes to be the truth?” (c)

Truly beatiful language, empowering scenery and ending. I especially loved that the plot was very neat, overly so - are there really that many lookalikes in reality, who cares? I loved this book and it covers evrything.
The author instantly became my favourite, I definitely will read his other books.
K.D. Absolutely
Jun 17, 2011 rated it liked it
In an interview included in my edition of this book, James Archer (born 1940) said that this novel is a contemporary retelling of Alexander Dumas The Count of Monte Cristo. Since I have not read yet the said classic book, I checked its synopsis in Wikipedia. It seems that Archer did a good job by using the plot but making it current by putting his personal touch on it.

Among the different literary genres, I must admit that suspense thriller and romance are my least favorites. I love reading read
Carol (Bookaria)
Jun 02, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019, fiction
This is a retelling of The Count of Monte Cristo set in contemporary times. I was engaged by the story and the plot moved at a quick pace. 

I haven't read the original so I can't tell how faithful it is, but I knew it was about a wrongfully-accused man that is sent to prison and manages to get out and seek revenge.

Good writing and I kept turning those pages (figuratively since I listened to the audiobook)

Things I liked:
- It's a retelling of a classic novel
- Moves at a fast pace
- Dialogue keeps t
Sep 06, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thrillers
As a friend very rightly put it…’A Prisoner of Birth’ has all the makings of a Bollywood Masala Movie.

Danny Cartwright, a humble East-End mechanic has just proposed to his childhood sweet heart Beth. He decides to celebrate by treating his fiancée and best-friend Bernie Wilson (who also happens to be Beth’s brother) at an upmarket bar ‘The Dunlop Arms’. Also present at the bar, are a drunken party of four men, who started passing lewd comments at Beth and raise Bernie’s ire. Despite Danny’s prot
Nov 12, 2017 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: archer
This is Archer's version of The Count of Monte Cristo. It made him return to the top of the bestseller lists. It was influenced by Archer's own time in prison.

The setting,appropriately is Belmarsh prison where Archer spent the initial twenty two days of his incarceration. The protagonist is sentenced to spend twenty two years there,for a crime he did not commit.

I was not too impressed with this story.
It is a ridiculous plot,full
of loopholes and improbable ideas. One person is shown to impersona
Apr 02, 2015 rated it did not like it
This is the most well written book to which I've given a 1. It's also the first one star rating I've given to Jeffrey Archer. If you searched the words 'go to' in my dictionary, you'll find a picture of Archer. That's no longer true. More than the first half of the book had some merit, but it was only about build up, promise, and expectation. All three undercut, broken, and betrayed, respectively. If a restaurant makes you wait for so long that you're not faint of hunger but bored, impatient, a ...more
Jun 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is one of the most enjoyable audiobooks I've listened to all year. I suppose it reminded me of this author's Clifton Chronicles which I also love on audio. Similarities would be the theme of a poor young man trying to get out from under the thumb(s) of the rich. Same guy going to prison for something he didn't do, leaving behind his fiancé, at one point refusing to communicate with her again. Now, the more I think about it, the more similarities I see; yet this story stands on its own two f ...more
Vikalp Trivedi
Jan 03, 2017 rated it it was ok
'A Prisoner Of Birth' by Jeffrey Archer is a modern retelling of the classic 'The Count Of Monte Christo' . The book follows story of a man who is wrongly convicted and now willing to extract revenge .

Sadly I have to say that I found this book the weakest among the books I read by Archer . It seemed that Jeffrey Archer ran out of ideas while writing this novel ( A look alike prisoner , seriously ) . Many of the incedents in the novel are needlessly put and these incedentes slows down the pace o
Jun 22, 2010 rated it liked it
A (loosely based) modern day retelling of the Count of Monte Cristo.

This story was fun but I didn't think it was particularly well written and the story was too long.

May 27, 2008 rated it liked it
Well its hard to meet the readers' expectations if your first few books are "Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less", "Kane and Abel" & "As the Crow Flies".

I felt that though the plot is not something that would make one say ... wow! now that's a new one.

Its a slight parallel of the first book mentioned above from his early days as well as "The Count of Monte Cristo" (As Archer himself agrees in many of his interviews)

What I liked most is the pace at which the story runs. Probably that is why it is
Eddie Owens
Jun 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Another solid story. Sterotypical characters, clichés - despite the main character being told not to use them - and no real depth to anyone.

But having said all that, I still read 500 pages and enjoyed it, so he must be doing something right.

And now my Archer readathon comes to a close for the time being.

Feb 28, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This was such a well written suspense/thriller . It's weaned me off my fantasy series books; it was such a good read.

The plot and characters were so well developed. It had so many twists and turns. It was a little predictable in that it's a modern day version of The Count of Monte Cristo , but it was done in such an interesting way I didn't mind. And it's even better than the original classic, if that's possible.

I don't say that lightly at all because I'm the type that believes the origi
Raven and Beez
Aug 22, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Read on blog!!


It is a great book with absolutely no place for errors. A plot that makes you go 'ooh!' and 'aah!' A must read book for those who prefer crime-mystery novels and for the people out there who think it's boring to read about the court proceedings, trust me this book will make you want to learn the law.

Alex Redmayne was my favourite side character because he is a lawyer and I have always had a liking for lawyers who are smart, handsome and prefer to do anything to help prevail justice
A modern parallel to, The Count of Monte Cristo, done in a much shorter timeline. Jeffrey Archer did a great job of creating a story line that was interesting and characters that were compelling. I enjoyed the writing and the drama very much, it was suspenseful even though predictable. If you have read, The Count of Monte Cristo, this book has enough creative twists to keep it engrossing, if not, your going to love every oscillating turn.
Erin *Proud Book Hoarder*
Jeffrey Archer is not a stranger of success, being rated as one of Britain's highest paid authors. Here the talented man decides to pay homage to Alexander Dumas, creating a book similar in many cases to the legendary 'The Count of Monte Crisco.'

A Prisoner of Birth delves into injustice suffered by an innocent man, surrounded by those more powerful than he. Through inner strength and iron-tight friendship, hurdles are eventually overcome to a meet a satisfying conclusion. Who doesn't look forwar
May 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
They are both oaks, even if they were planted in different forests. But then, m’lord, we all suffer in our different ways from being prisoners of birth.

Jeffry Archer has done it again. He has written a sensational legal thriller that I couldn’t put down. I carried my Kindle every where I went even if I only could read a couple of pages at a time. I lost a lot of sleep because this gripping novel would not let go of me. The fast paced story takes place mainly in London, England, Scotland and with
Jul 02, 2018 rated it liked it
A British legal thriller. The plot is interesting (but not too original)…. (The author himself claimed it was loosely based on the Count of Monte Cristo.)
The issue of the conflict between the British working class and nobility was addressed and I found that part interesting.

While there were many bends and turns in the plot, the legal part of it was not fully convincing (in my unprofessional opinion)

I found the pace a bit slow and too many clichés like
"REVENGE IS A dish best served cold. "
Jan 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
I never thought I’d read a book by disgraced Tory peer, Jeffery Archer, but this one was highly recommended by a friend and it cost me not a penny…
A modern take on The Prince and The Pauper, ‘A Prisoner of Birth’ requires a huge suspension of disbelief. Not surprisingly, given his time at Her Majesty’s Pleasure, Archer’s courtroom and prison scenes are very convincing, but other elements of the plot range from the improbable (unable to read and write, then able to pass 6 GCSEs six months later),
Hesamul Haque
Jan 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Another master piece by master story teller!
Benjamin Thomas
Oct 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller-legal
Having read most of Jeffrey Archer’s work, I would rank this novel among his top-tier. That’s pretty good considering he is the author of As the Crow Flies and Kane and Abel, both among my all-time favorite novels.

As others have said, (and in fact, the author himself), this novel is a loose re-imagining of Alexandre DumasThe Count of Monte Cristo, brought forward into modern day England. Novels of false imprisonment and subsequent revenge on the conspirators are always compared to Dumas’ mas
Feb 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
A Prisoner of Birth by Jeffrey Archer
4 ★'s

From The Book:
If Danny Cartwright had proposed to Beth Wilson on any other day, he would not have been arrested and charged with the murder of his best friend. But when the prosecution witnesses happen to be a group of four upper-crust college friends―a barrister, a popular actor, an aristocrat, and the youngest partner in an established firm's history―who is going to believe Danny's side of the story?

Danny is sentenced to twenty-two years and sent to Be
Jan 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I finally decided to give four stars only because the justice and the fairness play such an important part of the novel. The legal discourse is superb, and the presentation of the life in prison seems plausible, and most importantly, it is a novel with a very significant literary reminiscence.

It is definitely a book written by a Conservative, and as a liberal, you constantly pick up the clues and the messages that go against your convictions. But (I hate the conjunction at the beginning of the
Jim B
A modern "Count of Monte Cristo" (that was Jeffrey Archer's goal) and just as enjoyable! The book is not a simplistic presentation, but has enough reversal of fortunes to keep you on the edge of your seat, but the author said in an interview that he wanted the punishment to be appropriate to the crime. British courtroom scenes were extremely revealing -- you get to see the art of arguing a case in front of a British jury as well as learn about British prisons and Swiss bankers.

The audiobook was
Ramon Remires
Nov 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya-for-adults
It may be that Jeffrey Archer fabricates details about himself, but when it comes to writing a thriller, he is a master.

 This is one of the best books I read recently. It Described in detail - sometimes to exaggeration (but it is unforgivable). This book is not tiring, it's rhythmic and tense, causes sink into the plot of the book and forget reality, and time passes unnoticed.

Oh, yea! And There is a hero in the book who you fall in love with immediately. He is wise, considerate, determined and b
Jun 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this modern version of The Count of Monte Cristo which is one of my favourite books. Jeffrey Archer writes a very easy to follow engaging story. Very well narrated by Roger Allam. I couldn’t stop listening!
Jan 28, 2009 rated it liked it
This was an interesting story that pulled heavily from The Count of Monte Cristo. Still, it was entertaining, even if it wasn't an edge of your seat thriller. ...more
Dec 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
Whatever your opinions are of Jeffrey Archer the man it is difficult to deny that he is an excellent storyteller. A very good read.
Jan 28, 2021 rated it it was amazing

of course it's an excellent book, because it's written by jeffrey archer. he is simply a master storyteller.

it was so hard to put this book down. my family's supper was delayed as i was reading the last few pages. what a page turner with lots of twists and turns. brilliant !!
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What's the Name o...: SOLVED. Crime novel- a guy from jail changes with his bunk partner. [s] 4 15 Nov 19, 2019 07:08AM  
What's the Name o...: SOLVED. Prison life book. [s] 4 19 May 28, 2018 01:11AM  
awesome.. 3 11 Sep 02, 2016 04:14AM  
Free copy! 1 29 Apr 14, 2014 12:56AM  
terjemahan 1 7 Jan 02, 2014 03:32PM  
A Prisoner of Birth 9 140 Aug 26, 2013 02:40PM  
Prison Diaries 1 28 Jul 26, 2010 11:41PM  

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Jeffrey Howard Archer, Baron Archer of Weston-super-Mare (born 15 April 1940) is an English author and former politician.

He was a Member of Parliament and deputy chairman of the Conservative Party, and became a life peer in 1992. His political career, having suffered several controversies, ended after a conviction for perverting the course of justice and his subsequent imprisonment. He is married

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