June 14, 2007

Book Review: Federal Prison (Camp)

Surviving Federal Prison Camp: An informative and helpful guide for prospective inmates by Gerald J. Luongo, PhD. (Mallon Publishing, 2005 ISBN 0-9763418-6-7)

This book was written by: Gerald J. Luongo, PhD. Gerald held a job as a school principal before entering New Jersey politics, where he apparently made some enemies. In the "about the author" section of the book, it states that "unable to unseat him fairly at the polls due to his popularity and leadership, [Luongo's] adversaries took the political low road." These adversaries "involved the FBI, which, with the help of an aggressive and trophy-hunting prosecutor, gratuitiously made a wasteland of his life." Convicted of subscribing to false income tax returns, Longo was assigned to the federal prison camp that inspired him to write this work.

What is in this book: An overview of conditions at federal prison camps, based on the author's personal experience. It also contains checklists of things to do before going to prison to make sure that your finances are taken care of and your family is provided for.

What is not in this book: Practical instructions for making a shiv, brewing liquor in a toilet bowl, or surviving the showers.

Would you recommend this book to anyone who plans to be sent to prison? No. At a little under half an inch thick, you would not be able to hollow it out to provide a hiding place for your contraband.

Would you recommend this book to families of the incarcerated? Yes. It is just thin enough to prop up an uneven table or chair leg, or the pages can be torn out and used to stop drafts until the incarcerated family member returns home and is able to perform more permanent repairs.

What was interesting about this book? Stories about people setting beds on fire and trying to steal each other's wives (on the outside). I was also interested in reading the author's opinions on a variety of topics connected to the criminal justice system, like "the right of any government to force an individual into labor, paying you pennies a day,"(p.69) and his comparison of federal prison camps to other methods of incarceration, since (emphasis the author's)"many of these local and county facilities are inhumane. They house every kind and variety of street trash and, frankly, any decent person may not survive the ordeal."(p.10)

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dr. Gerald J. Luongo is now the artistic director of the Boca Raton Singers!

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