Why this book?
Papillon is the true story of a man falsely imprisoned for murder. He made several escape attempts over many years and his determination in situations that brought him a lot of punishment and emotional suffering makes for a gripping read. His interactions with other prisoners and people he met on the outside show how he needed to adapt to be safe and to have any chance of living a normal life. This is a real page-turner as it will take you out of your comfort zone and put you in a different world.
Why should I read it?
What is this book about?
An immediate sensation upon its publication in 1969, Papillon is a vivid memoir of brutal penal colonies, daring prison breaks and heroic adventure on shark-infested seas.
Condemned for a murder he did not commit, Henri Charriere, nicknamed Papillon, was sent to the penal colony of French Guiana. Forty-two days after his arrival he made his first break for freedom, travelling a thousand gruelling miles in an open boat. He was recaptured and put into solitary confinement but his spirit remained untamed: over thirteen years he made nine incredible escapes, including from the notorious penal colony on Devil's Island.