Suggestions for fiction and nonfiction titles relating to ‘imprisonment’, ‘wrongful imprisonment’ and ‘released from prison when later found innocent, suitable for Level 2 and 3.


La prisonniere : twenty years in a desert goal / Malika Oufkir
Excellent tale of a family’s imprisonment due to their father’s actions.

Books by Alexander Solzhenitsyn

The industry of souls by Martin Booth

One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovitch by Alexander Solzhenitsyn

The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

The man in the iron mask by Alexandre Dumas

Not without my daughter by Betty Mahmoody
In 1986, American Betty Mahmoody agreed to travel to Iran with her Iranian-born husband, Moody, and their four-year, old daughter, Mahtob (""Moonbeam""). The trip was to last two weeks, during which time they would visit Moody's Islamic fundamentalist family, whom Moody had seen infrequently over the years (having been trained as an anaesthesiologist in the US). Upon arrival, Betty found conditions and customs that she was unprepared for: the Iranians attacked their food ""like herds of untamed animals""; their bathrooms, reeking of mildew and worse, featured water hoses instead of toilet paper; and everyone, well, smelled But more serious matters awaited her: when the two weeks of the visit were up, Moody informed her that she and Mahtob would be staying in Iran with him. Bound in his sister's dismal fortress home, eating unsanitary meals in squalid conditions, and subjected to an increasingly depressed Moody, Betty tried frantically to escape--to little avail, partly because without her daughter--whom Moody insisted on keeping--she would not leave. The contest of wills was doctrinaire, real, and thorough: having had an IUD inserted against Moody's wishes, Betty ripped it out after becoming afraid he'd discover it, and felt compelled to cut it into tiny pieces and toss it out her window because she feared he'd search the trash. When Betty found a way out, it involved stealing across the Turkish border with smugglers, by horse. A hair-raising escape brought her and Mahtob back to the US, where they now live under assumed names, fearful of Moody's spies.

La prisonniere by Malika Oufkir
For something slightly different this lady suffered in prison though hadn't committed a crime at all. Good for cultural theme too.

Mayada : Daughter of Iraqby Jean P. Sasson

Mayada was born into a powerful Iraqi family. One grandfather fought alongside Lawrence of Arabia. The other is acclaimed as the first true Arab nationalist. Her uncle was Prime Minister for nearly forty years, her mother an important politician. When Saddam Hussein and his Ba'ath party seized power, and instituted his reign of terror, Mayada found herself alone in Baghdad, a divorced parent of two children, earning a meagre living printing brochures. Until one morning in August 1999 when she was summarily arrested and dragged to the notorious Baladiyat Prison, falsely accused of printing anti-government propaganda.There she was thrown into a cell with 17 'shadow women'. Like latter-day Sherezades, these women passed their days, while waiting for the next interrogation and torture session, telling each other their stories. They were eager to hear Mayada's stories of her privileged former life, of the history of her proud family, of kings and queens, of meetings with Saddam himself.Not only the story of a woman intimately connected to Iraq's cultured, ancient history, this book is a powerful witness to the terror and horror wrought by Saddam on the lives and souls of its ordinary citizens.

The curative by Charlotte Randall (NZ). The narrator is an inmate of Bedlam, the London mental asylum.

Proved Innocent by Gerry Conlon – the story of the Guildford Four

Papillon by Henri Charriere

A Lesson Before Dying by Ernest J. Gaines (fiction about a black man imprisoned and sentenced to death in 1940s Southern USA.

The Birdman of Alcatraz

Change of heart by Jodi Picoult

Movies
Shawshank redemption
Life of David Gale
In the name of the father (starring Daniel Day-Lewis and Emma Thompson)