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My Time Will Come: A Memoir of Crime, Punishment, Hope, and Redemption

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My story has been told many times and by highly regarded experts in their fields [judges, prosecutors, juvenile probation officers, sociologists, journalists]. But today, if you'll bear with me, I would like to try to tell it to you myself. I have reason to believe the experts may be wrong about me. You see, today, thirty years later, I am neither in prison nor dead.--I My story has been told many times and by highly regarded experts in their fields [judges, prosecutors, juvenile probation officers, sociologists, journalists]. But today, if you'll bear with me, I would like to try to tell it to you myself. I have reason to believe the experts may be wrong about me. You see, today, thirty years later, I am neither in prison nor dead.--Ian Manuel The United States is the only country in the world that sentences thirteen- and fourteen-year-old offenders, mostly youth of color, to life in prison without parole, regardless of the scientifically proven singularities of the developing adolescent brain--a heinous wrinkle in the scandal of mass incarceration. In 1991, Ian Manuel, then fourteen was sentenced to life without parole for a non-homicide crime. In a botched mugging attempt with some older boys, he shot Debbie Baigrie, a young white mother of two, in the face. But as Bryan Stevenson has insisted, none of us should be judged by only the worst thing we have ever done. Here, capturing the fullness of his humanity, is Ian Manuel's powerful testimony of growing up homeless in Central Park Village in Tampa, Florida, a neighborhood riddled with poverty, gang violence, and drug abuse--and of his efforts to rise above his circumstances, only to find himself, partly through his own actions, imprisoned for two-thirds of his life, eighteen years of which were spent in solitary confinement. Here is the at once wrenching and inspiring story of how he endured the savagery of the US prison system and of how his victim, an extraordinary woman, forgave him and bravely advocated for his freedom, achieved by a crusade on the part of the Equal Justice Initiative to address a barbarism of our judicial system, and to bring about just mercy. Full of unexpected twists and turns as it describes a struggle to attain the glory of redemption, My Time Will Come is a paean to the capacity of the human will to transcend adversity through determination and art (in Ian Manuel's case, his dedication to writing poetry).


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My story has been told many times and by highly regarded experts in their fields [judges, prosecutors, juvenile probation officers, sociologists, journalists]. But today, if you'll bear with me, I would like to try to tell it to you myself. I have reason to believe the experts may be wrong about me. You see, today, thirty years later, I am neither in prison nor dead.--I My story has been told many times and by highly regarded experts in their fields [judges, prosecutors, juvenile probation officers, sociologists, journalists]. But today, if you'll bear with me, I would like to try to tell it to you myself. I have reason to believe the experts may be wrong about me. You see, today, thirty years later, I am neither in prison nor dead.--Ian Manuel The United States is the only country in the world that sentences thirteen- and fourteen-year-old offenders, mostly youth of color, to life in prison without parole, regardless of the scientifically proven singularities of the developing adolescent brain--a heinous wrinkle in the scandal of mass incarceration. In 1991, Ian Manuel, then fourteen was sentenced to life without parole for a non-homicide crime. In a botched mugging attempt with some older boys, he shot Debbie Baigrie, a young white mother of two, in the face. But as Bryan Stevenson has insisted, none of us should be judged by only the worst thing we have ever done. Here, capturing the fullness of his humanity, is Ian Manuel's powerful testimony of growing up homeless in Central Park Village in Tampa, Florida, a neighborhood riddled with poverty, gang violence, and drug abuse--and of his efforts to rise above his circumstances, only to find himself, partly through his own actions, imprisoned for two-thirds of his life, eighteen years of which were spent in solitary confinement. Here is the at once wrenching and inspiring story of how he endured the savagery of the US prison system and of how his victim, an extraordinary woman, forgave him and bravely advocated for his freedom, achieved by a crusade on the part of the Equal Justice Initiative to address a barbarism of our judicial system, and to bring about just mercy. Full of unexpected twists and turns as it describes a struggle to attain the glory of redemption, My Time Will Come is a paean to the capacity of the human will to transcend adversity through determination and art (in Ian Manuel's case, his dedication to writing poetry).

30 review for My Time Will Come: A Memoir of Crime, Punishment, Hope, and Redemption

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kaytee Cobb

    I will read all memoirs of people that had their lives changed by Bryan Stevenson.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Never Without a Book

    | My Time Will Come: A Memoir of Crime, Punishment, Hope, and Redemption | Ian Manuel In this unsparing memoir, Ian Manuel describes his experience as a juvenile prisoner who was sentenced to life in prison without parole at the age of 14. Manuel goes on to describes how he was blinded by his pain and how he was pressured into committing a crime by older boys. I’ve heard and read many, many stories like this, Black girls and boys who are sentenced to life in prison for nonhomicide crimes at a ver | My Time Will Come: A Memoir of Crime, Punishment, Hope, and Redemption | Ian Manuel In this unsparing memoir, Ian Manuel describes his experience as a juvenile prisoner who was sentenced to life in prison without parole at the age of 14. Manuel goes on to describes how he was blinded by his pain and how he was pressured into committing a crime by older boys. I’ve heard and read many, many stories like this, Black girls and boys who are sentenced to life in prison for nonhomicide crimes at a very young age and the whole thing just blows my mind on how the judicial system works. Throughout this memoir and describing his experience through poetry, Manual criticizes the prison system for its use of excessive punishment. With the help of Bryan Stevenson’s organization ‘Equal Justice Initiative’, Stevenson, and his team, argued that the use of extreme punishment was unconstitutional. The Supreme Court agreed, leading to Manuel’s release in 2016. I felt that Manuel had so much more to say, but overall this story is both uplifting and heart-wrenching. Thank you, @Pantheon for this gifted copy.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Oscreads

    Finished. Thank you @pantheonbooks #partner for sending a copy of “My Time Will Come” by Ian Manuel. I got this book the other day and I instantly started it. I literally dropped the four other books that I was reading to read this memoir and I’m glad I did. This was a tough read but while reading this I began to see the importance and the power behind Manuel’s words. If you get a chance please pre-order this book, I highly recommend it. Ian Manuel’s memoir is out in May.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Christina

    I was absolutely astonished while reading this book. Speechless. This is the true story of Ian Manuel, and his case. Manuel discusses the crime he committed as a 13 year old child, the environment that molded and shaped him, and how the US penal system swallows up our Black boys and men with a vengeance; hoping that they are no longer apart of society, forever. This book should not only enlighten you to Ian Manuel’s plight, but this book should open your eyes to the severity of treatment that is I was absolutely astonished while reading this book. Speechless. This is the true story of Ian Manuel, and his case. Manuel discusses the crime he committed as a 13 year old child, the environment that molded and shaped him, and how the US penal system swallows up our Black boys and men with a vengeance; hoping that they are no longer apart of society, forever. This book should not only enlighten you to Ian Manuel’s plight, but this book should open your eyes to the severity of treatment that is being handed down in prisons towards minors, minorities; particularly, Black males. In 1990, the state of Florida sentenced Ian Manuel to “natural life,” life without parole, 15 years, and life probation when he was 13 years old. The state of Florida deemed that a 13 year old Black boy would never be redeemable as a human being in his entire life and deserved to die in prison. On top of this harsh and cruel punishment, Manuel was constantly assigned to solitary confinement for 18 years, from the age of 15 years old. The decompensation, the deterioration, and emotional and inner turmoil that he went through for the 26 years he spent in prison, was hard to read and process through emotionally. What the US has done to children in this country is beyond comprehension. Although, Manuel was able to survive prison and the cycle of abuse that he had to endure, the system needs to be dismantled. If anyone doubts how systemic racism has constructed the pipeline to prison for Black boys, you should read this book. Prison abolition has also been shouted into the halls of justice for decades. Mass incarceration of our Black youth has reached levels of insurmountable damage that is damn near impossible to correct. Prison advocates, private prison industry, state and city legislation that allows for the genocide of our people all have blood on their hands. This book showcases the affects of poverty, poor quality education, systemic racism, and over-policing in Black communities that lead to a demise in some of our Black youth. There is no way that a 13 year old Black boy would be irredeemable, beyond repair and rehabilitated, sentenced to die in prison. As Bryan Stevenson has stated, “Each of us is more than the worst thing we've ever done.” The racism and prejudice that exists in prisons need to be eradicated. Prison abolition is our answer. I am utterly mesmerized by Ian’s life, and how he is adjusting to his life post-prison. He incurred some serious trauma in his life, and I just pray for his soul, his vulnerability, and his ability to discern what is in the best interest for his life. Thank you to Netgalley, Ian Manuel, and Pantheon Books for this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. Full review, link in bio. Companion reads with this book: · Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson · The Sun does Shine by Anthony Ray Hinton · Heavy by Kiese Laymon · Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates · Bird Uncaged by Marlon Peterson

  5. 4 out of 5

    Andrew Benson

    Another amazing story of perseverance and resilience connected to the Equal Justice Initiative. My friend, Tatiana Bertsch, helped secure Ian’s release, and I did not realize this until her name popped up about 2/3 of the way through the book. Then chills went down my spine because I remember eating dinner at Howley’s in December 2016 and seeing Ian and Tatiana walk in and eat together - just three short weeks after Ian’s release from prison. If you loved Just Mercy and The Sun Does Shine, you w Another amazing story of perseverance and resilience connected to the Equal Justice Initiative. My friend, Tatiana Bertsch, helped secure Ian’s release, and I did not realize this until her name popped up about 2/3 of the way through the book. Then chills went down my spine because I remember eating dinner at Howley’s in December 2016 and seeing Ian and Tatiana walk in and eat together - just three short weeks after Ian’s release from prison. If you loved Just Mercy and The Sun Does Shine, you will love this book too. According to Tatiana, Ian is a f**king miracle!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Eduvigues Cruz

    Wow. Speechless.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Daria Zeoli

    I first read about Ian Manuel a few months ago when I read Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption, so when the publisher reached out, I was definitely interested. I'm so glad to have had the opportunity to read Ian's story. His experience in the criminal "justice" system was heartbreaking; no child should be sentenced to die in prison with no hope of rehabilitation or a hopeful future. It's evident from Ian's poetry that he's a bright man and it's unconscionable that his potential was dampe I first read about Ian Manuel a few months ago when I read Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption, so when the publisher reached out, I was definitely interested. I'm so glad to have had the opportunity to read Ian's story. His experience in the criminal "justice" system was heartbreaking; no child should be sentenced to die in prison with no hope of rehabilitation or a hopeful future. It's evident from Ian's poetry that he's a bright man and it's unconscionable that his potential was dampened for 2/3 of his life. That he spent much of that time in solitary confinement is further evidence of the strength he has. While the crime he committed as a young teenager wasn’t victimless, the circumstances of Ian’s childhood and incarceration show that he was always struggling uphill. As a society, we need to do better by our youth. We need to throw this broken system out and build something new. Ian was released from prison with the help of the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) and this memoir ends as he heads to Alabama to begin his life outside of the Florida prison system. I would love to see a second volume of his story. Thank you to Knopf Books for providing a ARC for review.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Heather

    This book, by Ian Manuel, describes the major part of his life that he spent incarcerated. He writes with passion and strong emotion about the abuse he suffered during that time and how he was able to survive. His timeline was a little confusing at times, but that really didn't bother me. Thank goodness for Bryan Stevenson and the EJI team, or Ian would have surely continued to be tortured and eventually perished behind bars. This book, by Ian Manuel, describes the major part of his life that he spent incarcerated. He writes with passion and strong emotion about the abuse he suffered during that time and how he was able to survive. His timeline was a little confusing at times, but that really didn't bother me. Thank goodness for Bryan Stevenson and the EJI team, or Ian would have surely continued to be tortured and eventually perished behind bars.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Liz Ritchie

    Ian Manuel's memoir was a quick, but not easy read. His story of incarceration includes abuse and straight up torture; much of it endured as a child. He reveals the corruption of the department of corrections and the dysfunctional legal system we have in our nation. While me and my homies already hate the prison system, this furthered my frustrations and disappointment. The most special parts of this memoir are Manuel's poetry and the incredible work that Equal Justice Initiative does. I also wa Ian Manuel's memoir was a quick, but not easy read. His story of incarceration includes abuse and straight up torture; much of it endured as a child. He reveals the corruption of the department of corrections and the dysfunctional legal system we have in our nation. While me and my homies already hate the prison system, this furthered my frustrations and disappointment. The most special parts of this memoir are Manuel's poetry and the incredible work that Equal Justice Initiative does. I also wanna give a huge shout out to Maria, his social worker, who is inspiring to me (also a social worker). I recommend this book to all who are interested in social issues, memoirs, and some inspiring poetry.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Kay

    If you have any illusions about our prison system being one of rehabilitation, Ian Manuel will break those ideas with his images of prison life in Florida. Confinement, made up incidents of non-compliance, stricter than societal behavior restrictions. As a 14 year old boy, he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for a non-homicidal crime committed at the instigation of older boys. He saved himself through writing poetry, imaging a life of love and fulfillment, seekin If you have any illusions about our prison system being one of rehabilitation, Ian Manuel will break those ideas with his images of prison life in Florida. Confinement, made up incidents of non-compliance, stricter than societal behavior restrictions. As a 14 year old boy, he was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for a non-homicidal crime committed at the instigation of older boys. He saved himself through writing poetry, imaging a life of love and fulfillment, seeking reconciliation and determination. He was eventually discovered by the Equal Justice Initiative of Bryan Stevenson and the story evolves from there. A good read for sure.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Mary Lunghi

    Having read Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson, I was already aware of the institutional racism that is our current penal system and the injustices that are rampant. Reading My Time Will Come by Ian Manuel was so powerful, hearing his story, in his voice, in the face of this evilness that sought to eradicate his humanity. His ability to not be crushed and in fact to rise above it, is beyond moving and inspiring. His poetry, which is interspersed throughout the book clearly was an outlet for all that Having read Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson, I was already aware of the institutional racism that is our current penal system and the injustices that are rampant. Reading My Time Will Come by Ian Manuel was so powerful, hearing his story, in his voice, in the face of this evilness that sought to eradicate his humanity. His ability to not be crushed and in fact to rise above it, is beyond moving and inspiring. His poetry, which is interspersed throughout the book clearly was an outlet for all that he was experiencing and brings you into his world, his feelings in a deeply human way. To think that they locked away for life a 14 year old boy and then subjected that young boy to inhumane, horrible treatment for so many years is incomprehensible. Yet it happened. Thank God for Bryan Stevenson and his EJI organization that fights against evil like this and wins. And just today Derek Chauvin, a white man, received 22 years for murdering George Floyd, a black man. I couldn’t help but reflect on the contrast to Ian Manuel, a 14 year old black boy, who shot a white woman who lived, and he got life in prison.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Geraldine (geraldinereads)

    Ian Manuel was only 14 when he was sentenced to life without parole. He suffered almost 20 years of abuse and trauma in the prison system, but with the help of Bryan Stevenson and his team of lawyers from the Equal Justice Initiative, he was able to win his freedom in 2016. I couldn't put this book down! It's a really short, but powerful read that gives you a look not only into Ian Manuel's life, but the prison system that almost broke him. Ian does a great job at both being a writer and a poet, Ian Manuel was only 14 when he was sentenced to life without parole. He suffered almost 20 years of abuse and trauma in the prison system, but with the help of Bryan Stevenson and his team of lawyers from the Equal Justice Initiative, he was able to win his freedom in 2016. I couldn't put this book down! It's a really short, but powerful read that gives you a look not only into Ian Manuel's life, but the prison system that almost broke him. Ian does a great job at both being a writer and a poet, and includes many of his heartbreaking poems in this book. If you were a fan of Just Mercy or The Sun does Shine, this is one you'll have to add to your TBR as well! This book is an important read where Bryan Stevenson shows us once again how "we are, in fact, more than the worst thing we've ever done", and I highly recommend it! Thank you to Pantheon Books for sending me an arc!

  13. 4 out of 5

    Gina

    Bryan Stevenson is one of my personal heroes. His tireless work to bring justice to many innocent men on death row is incredible. In this book the author Ian Manuel is 13 when he is sentenced to life in prison without parole. He was treated as an adult in prison and his stories of the treatment he received in multiple prisons in this country is criminal in itself. We treat prisoners like animals or worse. Ian spent years in solitary confinement, endured abuse by prison guards and almost everyone Bryan Stevenson is one of my personal heroes. His tireless work to bring justice to many innocent men on death row is incredible. In this book the author Ian Manuel is 13 when he is sentenced to life in prison without parole. He was treated as an adult in prison and his stories of the treatment he received in multiple prisons in this country is criminal in itself. We treat prisoners like animals or worse. Ian spent years in solitary confinement, endured abuse by prison guards and almost everyone he came in contact with. To get any attention he would cut himself and get taken to medical unit. But if wounds were self inflicted that would stitch you up without numbing medication. Every story is filled with horrors like this. The fact that he survived at all is amazing. He started writing poems in prison many of which are included in the book. He read the Bible and somehow kept hope and faith that one day he might get parole. His parents and brother all died while he was in prison. His savior was the Equal Justice Initiative led by Bryan Stevenson. In addition to representing people on death row, EJI found many juveniles who had been imprisoned with life sentences and began appeals to the Supreme Court to have their sentences reduced. They won two cases and wrote to Ian to ask to represent him and get his sentence reduced. After many years they succeeded and Ian was released in his forties. Ian was guilty of shooting someone at 13 and his victim forgave him and supported his release. His story is remarkable and without EJI it would not have been possible. Ian is a great writer and now does motivational speaking. If you care about justice particularly for people of color, this is a must read along with Just Mercy which is Bryan Stevenson’s book.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Becca

    If you’re like me and were moved by Bryan Stevenson’s Just Mercy, Ian Manuel’s story will serve as another beautiful reminder that “each of us is more than the worst thing we’ve ever done.” Alongside his original poetry, Ian Manuel tells his story of being sentenced to life without parole for a crime he committed at 13 years old, and what followed. This book will shed light on some of the major changes that still need to be made in the American judicial system, but it also speaks of hope, forgiv If you’re like me and were moved by Bryan Stevenson’s Just Mercy, Ian Manuel’s story will serve as another beautiful reminder that “each of us is more than the worst thing we’ve ever done.” Alongside his original poetry, Ian Manuel tells his story of being sentenced to life without parole for a crime he committed at 13 years old, and what followed. This book will shed light on some of the major changes that still need to be made in the American judicial system, but it also speaks of hope, forgiveness, and the resilience of the human spirit. Thanks to the publisher and netgalley for the advanced review copy. My Time Will Come releases on May 4, 2021.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Penelope Wood

    Hard to read but beautifully written is this incredible memoir. If you have any desire, and you should, to know what our justice system looks like, how it works, and how it is used to label people as young as Ian, forging a path of a lifetime of institutions and abuse, then you should read this book. Ian’s resilience, grace, and humility will bring tears to your eyes as he navigates the worst justice system in the world. Not many people have what it takes to not only survive but to keep fighting Hard to read but beautifully written is this incredible memoir. If you have any desire, and you should, to know what our justice system looks like, how it works, and how it is used to label people as young as Ian, forging a path of a lifetime of institutions and abuse, then you should read this book. Ian’s resilience, grace, and humility will bring tears to your eyes as he navigates the worst justice system in the world. Not many people have what it takes to not only survive but to keep fighting for their life in a system that so desperately wants you to feel like you’re already dead. I feel privileged to have read Ian’s book.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Judy Frey

    If you loved Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson ( and I did), you will also love this book. Stevenson write the foreword and Ian Manuel became a client of the Equal Justice Initiative. Mr. Manuel committed a non- homicidal crime at the age of 14 and was sentenced to life in prison without parole. This was, and is, possible in Florida. Stevenson has fought to change this for years. What Ian experienced in prison was beyond degrading but the EJI did not give up on him. Manuel also proved himself to be If you loved Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson ( and I did), you will also love this book. Stevenson write the foreword and Ian Manuel became a client of the Equal Justice Initiative. Mr. Manuel committed a non- homicidal crime at the age of 14 and was sentenced to life in prison without parole. This was, and is, possible in Florida. Stevenson has fought to change this for years. What Ian experienced in prison was beyond degrading but the EJI did not give up on him. Manuel also proved himself to be an incredible poet and many of his poems are featured in the book. Highly recommend the book.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    This is a difficult but very important read! If you liked Just Mercy this is a book to read!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Katie Proctor

    This short, hard-hitting memoir is REALLY powerful. I loved listening to Ian himself read the audio version—his poetry comes through in such an impactful way. It’s such a hard story, but ultimately hopeful.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Stuart

    3.5 stars rounded up because at the end of the day I still love his story, I just got lost in the last parts of the book. So much moving from one prison to another to another and a lot of crammed information made it difficult to follow I was losing interest. But that doesn’t take away from the story and how Ian endured against all odds. If you loved Just Mercy and The Sun Does Shine I highly recommend this. Ian’s story stood out in Just Mercy and it was nice to read his poetry. I didn’t know muc 3.5 stars rounded up because at the end of the day I still love his story, I just got lost in the last parts of the book. So much moving from one prison to another to another and a lot of crammed information made it difficult to follow I was losing interest. But that doesn’t take away from the story and how Ian endured against all odds. If you loved Just Mercy and The Sun Does Shine I highly recommend this. Ian’s story stood out in Just Mercy and it was nice to read his poetry. I didn’t know much about his relationship with Debbie and I was hoping to read and learn more about that but there was not that much about it.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Polly

    Here is a brutal and ultimately uplifting memoir by an astonishing man who survived the horrific corruption of the juvenile justice system. Where the UN calls fifteen days in solitary confinement extreme torture, Manuel survived eighteen years of it, though with physical, mental, and emotional scars. His spirit, however, remained and remains intact. At age 14, Manuel shot a woman in the face. In a botched robbery, showing his bravado to his older bros, Manuel panicked and pulled the trigger, sho Here is a brutal and ultimately uplifting memoir by an astonishing man who survived the horrific corruption of the juvenile justice system. Where the UN calls fifteen days in solitary confinement extreme torture, Manuel survived eighteen years of it, though with physical, mental, and emotional scars. His spirit, however, remained and remains intact. At age 14, Manuel shot a woman in the face. In a botched robbery, showing his bravado to his older bros, Manuel panicked and pulled the trigger, shooting Debbie Baigre. He confessed his guilt and was sentenced to life in prison without parole. Baigre lived and through multiple plastic surgeries regained her attractive looks and developed compassion for the young boy who shot her after Manuel called Baigre from prison to apologize for shooting her and wished her and her family well. But prison is not a place for rehabilitation. It's the scene of crimes against humanity, perpetrated by those in charge. Through it all, Manuel fell in love with literature and poetry. His imagination kept him alive, as did his own poetry. Even though the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that "the state cannot extinguish his potential to attain mature understanding of his own humanity," the state prison system of Florida, and I suspect of all states in our nation, tries its damndest to do just that. There are far too many juveniles serving prison time in adult populations where they are preyed upon and tortured by older inmates. Manuel sheds light on the hidden brutalities that take place behind prison walls with the hopes that public knowledge of what goes on will help to change the corrupt system. In his final resentencing after umpteenth attempts for justice, he read his statement before the judge: "I'm waiting on the justice system to catch up with my remorse and [Beigre's] forgiveness." In 2016 he finally got his wish.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Natalie (readswithnatalieb)

    I was very late to the game, but I learned about Ian Manuel after reading Just Mercy Last month. The second I saw it as an ARC choice from Double Day, I knew I had to read it. Before I read the book, I learned that Manuel narrates his story, and luckily the audiobook was available at my library. I highly recommend reading while listening because it adds so much more to the story hearing it come Manuel. It was a difficult, but necessary memoir to read. His experience in jail is nothing short of ok I was very late to the game, but I learned about Ian Manuel after reading Just Mercy Last month. The second I saw it as an ARC choice from Double Day, I knew I had to read it. Before I read the book, I learned that Manuel narrates his story, and luckily the audiobook was available at my library. I highly recommend reading while listening because it adds so much more to the story hearing it come Manuel. It was a difficult, but necessary memoir to read. His experience in jail is nothing short of okay, and it’s absolute heart-breaking hearing him relive his story. Manuel proves time and time again, that rehabilitation over retribution can do absolute wonders for our country. We need so much change from sentencing laws to treatment and conditions, and so much more. Beyond the heartbreak and horrifying details, readers witness Manuel growing as a person, despite all the hate around him. Although it wasn’t expressed a lot, I’m sure there was anger inside him, but how he projected himself as a while incarcerated was truly mind-blowing. Through it all, I had so much respect for Debbie, the woman Manuel shot. Their relationship over the years proves how kindness, forgiveness, and how giving someone a second chance can go a long way. Come for Manuel’s story, stay for his amazing poems he wrote while in jail. Content warnings: abuse, mugging, shooting, molestation, death.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Bob Woodley

    Ian Manuel was sent to prison at the age of 14 for shooting a woman during a mugging. He was sentenced to life without parole and spent much of his sentence in solitary confinement. That's the headline, but the story was surprising in so many ways. - It is clear he was going to end up in prison one way or the other. He had no role models, his family had no stable home, his brother had sexually abused him, and Ian was engaged in a continuous series of thefts and muggings. - He had an interesting re Ian Manuel was sent to prison at the age of 14 for shooting a woman during a mugging. He was sentenced to life without parole and spent much of his sentence in solitary confinement. That's the headline, but the story was surprising in so many ways. - It is clear he was going to end up in prison one way or the other. He had no role models, his family had no stable home, his brother had sexually abused him, and Ian was engaged in a continuous series of thefts and muggings. - He had an interesting relationship with his victim after the crime. They corresponded and she alternately berated and encouraged him. - His mother is a well-drawn character and her behavior sometimes exceeds expectations and other times is destructive. - In prison it seems like he was never subjected to violence from other prisoners, despite Hollywood clichés. But the casual, institutionalized brutality of the system of the prison system is mind-boggling. I don't see how any human could maintain their sanity in such a system. Which leads to the next point: - The prisoners are continually drugged because ... they act out. But how could anyone do otherwise if you're gassed (really), beaten and subjected to solitary confinement? Imagine the effect on a teenager. I strongly recommend this book. It is quick to read.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Sara Broad

    "My Time Will Come" by Ian Manuel is the true story of the author's decades long struggle to secure freedom from a lifetime prison sentence for a crime he committed as a young teenager. Manuel details the vicious nature of America's system of mass incarceration and provides just one story of the many teenagers who are sentenced to a life behind bars for crimes they committed at a young age. Manuel spends decades, mostly in solitary confinement, searching for any avenue that will prove that the l "My Time Will Come" by Ian Manuel is the true story of the author's decades long struggle to secure freedom from a lifetime prison sentence for a crime he committed as a young teenager. Manuel details the vicious nature of America's system of mass incarceration and provides just one story of the many teenagers who are sentenced to a life behind bars for crimes they committed at a young age. Manuel spends decades, mostly in solitary confinement, searching for any avenue that will prove that the length of time for which he was sentenced never gives him the space to reestablish himself in society as a grown man who has learned from his actions. With the help of Bryan Stevenson and his team of lawyers at The Equal Justice Initiative, Manuel is released from prison. While his story is hopeful for Manuel himself, it barely shows promise for the people stuck behind bars without choice representation. "My Time Will Come" is interspersed with poems Manuel wrote during his time in prison and highlights that while each person is responsible for his or her own actions, the trauma experienced by people living in poverty often leads people, especially young people, to make decisions that are may not have been made under different circumstances. This book is really outstanding.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Mary Forbes

    This memoir was a difficult read. Ian Manuel shot a woman in the face when he was 13 and taking part in an armed robbery with a couple other guys; she survived. It's unbelievable that he had to endure such cruelty in prison. The treatment by prison guards was torture, even if you consider the adults guilty of heinous crimes. He was a kid! I honestly don't know how he survived -not only the physical abuse, but the mental anguish of solitary. Ian could be mouthy (but how much anger can anyone hold This memoir was a difficult read. Ian Manuel shot a woman in the face when he was 13 and taking part in an armed robbery with a couple other guys; she survived. It's unbelievable that he had to endure such cruelty in prison. The treatment by prison guards was torture, even if you consider the adults guilty of heinous crimes. He was a kid! I honestly don't know how he survived -not only the physical abuse, but the mental anguish of solitary. Ian could be mouthy (but how much anger can anyone hold inside?) and he didn't express a lot of remorse in the book (it wasn't safe to be vulnerable about anything!). But it doesn't matter---no one deserves inhumane cruelty and abuse. I didn't know prison guards gassed prisoners with a chemical that makes their skin burn, although I occasionally read about beatings by guards that sometimes result in death. It's evil. I just googled it, and a writer in 2014 had researched the deadly brutality of guards in Florida, which is where Ian Manual served his time. His poetry is good. I'm glad he's a motivational speaker; I hope he can make personal connections with people who need it most.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Amy Baron

    Unbelievable. Truly unbelievable. The American penal system is in need of major overhaul, and this story is but one example of why. But it will never be bc of the old boys network running it. It will forever be a way to keep those of color down and unjustly accused. But the hero, once again bc I read & loved Just Mercy, is Bryan Stevenson and the work he performs through the Equal Justice Initiative. He brings a glimmer of hope to the darkness cast over the ugly, and often illegal, system. Ian Ma Unbelievable. Truly unbelievable. The American penal system is in need of major overhaul, and this story is but one example of why. But it will never be bc of the old boys network running it. It will forever be a way to keep those of color down and unjustly accused. But the hero, once again bc I read & loved Just Mercy, is Bryan Stevenson and the work he performs through the Equal Justice Initiative. He brings a glimmer of hope to the darkness cast over the ugly, and often illegal, system. Ian Manual… what a story, what a storyteller. I’m sorry he’s able to tell this story for it should never have happened, but he is but one of many victims lost in a culture of imprisoned parents and ultimately raised by the wolves of the streets. Where does the fix begin? It’s so deeply rooted it’s hard to figure out, let alone make those in government understand and correct it. Thank God for people like Bryan Stevenson, but he’s only one person and there are too many who need his help. It hurts to know the unrighteous indignities so many in our society face…but what to do…what to do.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Jeni

    This story of a 14 year old boy sentenced to life without parole for a non-homicidal crime is incredibly moving. Manuel shares his story - explaining the childhood that led him to firing a gun at 14 years old and sharing us how facing a life in prison with adults changes a 14 year old. My pages were painful to read. Manuel's childhood was not one that we would wish for any child. What impressed me most was Manuel's willingness to not just lay bare his history, but to also take blame for what he This story of a 14 year old boy sentenced to life without parole for a non-homicidal crime is incredibly moving. Manuel shares his story - explaining the childhood that led him to firing a gun at 14 years old and sharing us how facing a life in prison with adults changes a 14 year old. My pages were painful to read. Manuel's childhood was not one that we would wish for any child. What impressed me most was Manuel's willingness to not just lay bare his history, but to also take blame for what he did as a child. He realizes and acknowledges that it was the decisions of a lot of adults and older peers that led him to the moment that resulted in his sentencing. However, he also takes personal responsibility for not only that action, but the decisions he made in prison. This book also gives us a glimpse into the impact that years upon years of solitary confinement (especially of a minor) can have on someone.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Joseph

    I’m not a fan of poetry beyond Ogden Nash and “The Cremation of Sam McGee.” I groan inwardly every time somebody at some event reads their favorite poem. But tears came at every poem Ian Manuel included his book, MY TIME WILL COME: A MEMOIR OF CRIME, PUNISHMENT, HOPE, AND REDEMPTION (Pantheon Book). When I tried to read his poems aloud, my voice would crack. He includes his poems in the book, but this is not a book of poems. It’s Manuel’s personal story of his life from petty crimes to shooting a I’m not a fan of poetry beyond Ogden Nash and “The Cremation of Sam McGee.” I groan inwardly every time somebody at some event reads their favorite poem. But tears came at every poem Ian Manuel included his book, MY TIME WILL COME: A MEMOIR OF CRIME, PUNISHMENT, HOPE, AND REDEMPTION (Pantheon Book). When I tried to read his poems aloud, my voice would crack. He includes his poems in the book, but this is not a book of poems. It’s Manuel’s personal story of his life from petty crimes to shooting a woman in the face when he was thirteen (she survived and later advocated for his freedom) to spending 25 years in the Florida prison system, 18 years of those in solitary confinement, mainly for disciplinary reasons (many of them totally frivolous or fabricated, many justified). Only through the efforts of the Equal Justice Initiative is he free today. (Note: after securing Manuel’s release, they took him to Alabama to get his education: He’s now a motivational speaker). 4 stars

  28. 4 out of 5

    Teri

    I didn't particularly enjoy this book and I feel that a better editor might have made for a more enjoyable reading experience. While I learned a good bit about the wretched penal system in Florida and the incarceration of children, I found the book to be very tedious and a more than a little confusing in places. For me it was a bit hard to follow with regard to the time periods and the movement of the author from one prison to another. I continued to find myself frustrated by his refusal to lear I didn't particularly enjoy this book and I feel that a better editor might have made for a more enjoyable reading experience. While I learned a good bit about the wretched penal system in Florida and the incarceration of children, I found the book to be very tedious and a more than a little confusing in places. For me it was a bit hard to follow with regard to the time periods and the movement of the author from one prison to another. I continued to find myself frustrated by his refusal to learn (or maybe accept) the behaviors that would keep him out of solitary confinement and in the general population. I am, however, very happy that the author received help from the Equal Justice Initiative out of Montgomery, AL, who felt he had been unjustly sentenced and worked tirelessly to get his sentence reduced. I am equally glad that he has found a way to give back via his motivational speaking.

  29. 4 out of 5

    ryan

    This story is profound on so many levels. It offers a look at the judicial system and the prison system in the United States, while simultaneously examining the psychology of human determination and hope through Manuel's experience. It is profoundly baffling how rigged the judicial and prison systems in the United States can be, especially against minorities. What is even more awe-inspiring is Manuel's insights and coping mechanisms. This man was pretty much raised in prison and spent a staggeri This story is profound on so many levels. It offers a look at the judicial system and the prison system in the United States, while simultaneously examining the psychology of human determination and hope through Manuel's experience. It is profoundly baffling how rigged the judicial and prison systems in the United States can be, especially against minorities. What is even more awe-inspiring is Manuel's insights and coping mechanisms. This man was pretty much raised in prison and spent a staggering amount of time in solitary, yet somehow manages to become an intelligent, even intellectual, socially conscious individual. That in itself makes him deserving of an ear. Mixed into the engaging narrative with Manuel's bordering on shouting tone, is the emotionally charged poetry readings. I thoroughly enjoyed this book and recommend it highly.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Emily Pendleton

    Ian Manuel gives a clear, brief picture of the circumstances that led him into incarceration, his time in prison, and his journey toward freedom. As someone moderately familiar with the prison industrial complex, I was happy to hear more about the effect juveniles in specific. The pace of the book was quick, which at times was ideal as Ian did not linger on some of the more gruesome details such as his sexual abuse (cw - but he doesn't get graphic-), but at other times I was left with questions Ian Manuel gives a clear, brief picture of the circumstances that led him into incarceration, his time in prison, and his journey toward freedom. As someone moderately familiar with the prison industrial complex, I was happy to hear more about the effect juveniles in specific. The pace of the book was quick, which at times was ideal as Ian did not linger on some of the more gruesome details such as his sexual abuse (cw - but he doesn't get graphic-), but at other times I was left with questions and curiosity. The book ends rather abruptly after his release in 2016, and I found myself wanting to know more about how he adapted to life after prison. I appreciate Ian's honesty and humanity throughout the memoir both about himself and about those around him. I listened to the audiobook, which the author narrates, and it was special to hear him read his own poetry.

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