Here's some thoughtful words about this book - from professional reviewers and readers like you. To submit your book review, kindly contact the publisher at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Listen to an interview on Talk Radio Europe that aired May 19, 2012 with host Selina MacKenzie:
Alcatraz Island: Memoirs of a Rock Doc is an incredible read. The Island has a fascinating history and this book is but a small part of an intriguingly large puzzle. Once I started reading it, I simply could not put it down. If you want to experience Alcatraz from a different perspective, this book is for you.
Jerry Champion, Board Member Alcatraz Alumni Association, August 22, 2010
. . If history of prison life interests you, if how the doctors of that time treated their captive patients fascinates you, then Alcatraz Island will be a good read for you. It is a thought–provoking book that will linger long in your mind.
RececcaReads.com, January 19, 2003
. . . Readers will find themselves behind the scenes in a manner that few other texts permit. . . those interested in correctional history would do well to spend a few evenings perusing its pages . . . use as a secondary source for undergraduate work.
Curtis Blakely, Ed.S., Corrections Today, June 2002
. . . Deftly edited by Dianne Beacher Perfit, Alcatraz Island is a vivid, gripping book, written in gut-wrenching descriptive language that brings the forbidding rock to life . . .highly recommended reading for students of American penology as well as a riveting autobiography of life behind bars from the unique perspective of a prison doctor.
Thomas G. Whelan, Whelan's Bookshelf, The Midwest Book Review, April 2002
Dianne Beacher Perfit has edited her fathers memoirs to provide a look at Alcatraz, the famed Federal prison, that could only have been written by an eyewitness. . . a story of the harsh life on the Rock, filled with suicides, a prisoners strike, and a successful escape.
Alan Caruba, www.bookviews.com
Alcatraz Island is a rare historical treasure. Readers will inarguably "see and hear" the prisoners yammering from 1937, too. Eerie.
Mary Morrison, CORAL GABLES GAZETTE
I think it will make a great addition to our library and to our bookstore.
Ranger Craig Glassner, Alcatraz Island, Golden Gate National Recreation Area
Thank you for allowing me the wonderful privilege to review your father's book. You have created a true masterpiece.... It's been a long time since I've held a book on AZ [Alcatraz] that brought the imagery and feeling of the island to my senses. You have brought the history of Alcatraz back to life. Admittedly, I had a hard time putting it down... It's a great tribute to your father and his memory.
Michael Esslinger, Author, ALCATRAZ - A DEFINITIVE HISTORY 1934 to 1963
Prior to reading your book, I've read perhaps eight others about Alcatraz, mostly by former inmates and guards. Thank you very much for the opportunity to learn about your dad's experiences as a doctor on the island. Memoirs of a Rock Doc is very well-written and informative.
Paul Schlecker, Chesterbrook PA
I want to tell you how much I enjoyed your book. I took it with me . . . read it during my 6 1/2 hour delay at Denver airport. I especially like the words of the era . . . stir, blowing his top, looking swell, etc. Reminded me of the early police/detective movies.
Nancie Greaney, Clinton NJ
The book has been a highlight of my summer reading list. Thanks to Dianne Perfit's crisp editing, Dr. Beacher's memoir reads like a novel. The gritty day-to-day of Alcatraz comes to life, and the desperation that inmates lived with is vividly re-created. I couldn't put the book down ... it was like spending a long day on the island. I heartily recommend "Alcatraz Island: Memoirs of a Rock Doc" to any reader who wants to experience life in a very different time and place - and the best feature is that you don't have to hear the door slam behind you!
I have just finish reading Alcatraz Memoirs of a Rock Doc as I have a keen interest in Alcatraz and I think this book gives an excellent insite into the life of the inhabitants on Alcatraz. Congratulations on such a fantastic book. I enjoyed it very much.
. . . heartily recommend the book as the basis for a screenplay . . fascinating book in and of itself . . . book's gray cover seems very apt. The way your dad describes the men, the surroundings, and the ambiance makes me glad that I'm on the right side of the law.
Jeffrey Dane, historian, researcher and author.
Excellent book ... it brought, to me, what life was like on the Rock. I was sorry that the book ended. Thanks.
Jerry Bianco, Parsippany, N.J.
. . . a nice combination of an eyewitness account including conversations with prisoners like Al Capone . . . since his daughter is a professional writer it doesn't have the awkward feeling a lot of memoirs have.
Doug Wade, Eljay Organization
We read your book with great relish and it certainly did paint an unforgettable visual of daily existence on The Island. I did not want your book to end as it left me wanting more profiles.
Christine Hooker, Niece of Prisoner #82
. . . I have never read anything about Alcatraz that gave me a better feel for what it must have been like for the prisoners than this book. The characters climbed off the page and into my imagination very effectively.
Mary Galloway, Daughter of prisoner #336
. . . this is not the type of book I would usually read. . . Even so, the way your father described the events at Alcatraz was very compelling. I often felt as if I were in the prison with him, witnessing the conversations and goings on in person. He (and you) described his surroundings well enough that I could feel the atmosphere of the place, and the coldness of the walls. I've visited Alcatraz, and although that probably helped to paint pictures in my mind as I read the book, I think I would still have seen those pictures if I had never been there.
Sandy Wincek, New Berlin, Wisconsin
I enjoyed it...You did a great job. I was disappointed that your father did not include some personal facts of his life there. I do remember seeing a picture of a dog that they had. He was hit by a car and your father devised and made a contrapetion that was strapped on his back which enabled him to get along.
Irene Westhoff, Port Orange, Florida
I devoured the book in two sittings. A fun read. And a nice addition to my book collection. Stanley Hamilton, Alexandria, VA
. . .the stories held my interest in an iron grip . . . look forward to seeing the movie . . . well done and truly a work of love that shows through on each and every page.
Larry Maltin, Dix Hills NY
I LOVED IT! Have read every book written about the prison during its federal years and I have the pleasure to tell you yours is one of the top two. Thank you so much for taking the time to transcribe your fathers notes . . . It was well worth while.
Jim Holden, London UK
Wonderful. Dianne has done a very effective job in maintaining the vernacular of the 30's. Alcatraz still holds a lot of mystique for people and this journal captures the essence of that interesting period.
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