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A loosely based modern day retelling of the Count of Monte Cristo This story was fun but I didn t think it was particularly well written and the story was too long. This is a retelling of The Count of Monte Cristo set in contemporary times I was engaged by the story and the plot moved at a quick pace I haven t read the original so I can t tell how faithful it is, but I knew it was about a wrongfully accused man that is sent to prison and manages to get out and seek revenge Good writing and I kept turning those pages figuratively since I listened to the audiobook Things I liked It s a retelling of a classic novel Moves at a fast pace Dialogue keeps the reader engaged @Download Book ⛅ A Prisoner of Birth ⚷ International Bestseller And Master Storyteller Jeffrey Archer Is At The Very Top Of His Game In This Story Of Fate And Fortune, Redemption And Revenge If Danny Cartwright Had Proposed To Beth Wilson The Day Before, Or The Day After, He Would Not Have Been Arrested And Charged With The Murder Of His Best Friend But When The Four Prosecution Witnesses Are A Barrister, A Popular Actor, An Aristocrat, And The Youngest Partner In An Established Firm S History, Who Is Going To Believe His Side Of The Story Danny Is Sentenced To Twenty Two Years And Sent To Belmarsh Prison, The Highest Security Jail In The Land, From Where No Inmate Has Ever EscapedHowever, Spencer Craig, Lawrence Davenport, Gerald Payne, And Toby Mortimer All Underestimate Danny S Determination To Seek Revenge, And Beth S Relentless Quest To Pursue Justice, Which Ends Up With All Four Fighting For Their LivesThus Begins Jeffrey Archer S Most Powerful Novel Since Kane And Abel, With A Cast Of Characters That Will Remain With You Long After You Ve Turned The Last PageAnd If That Is Not Enough, Prepare For An Ending That Will Shock Even The Most Ardent Of Archer S Fans In an interview included in my edition of this book, James Archer born 1940 said that this novel is a contemporary retelling of Alexander Dumas The Count of Monte Cristo. Since I have not read yet the said classic book, I checked its synopsis in Wikipedia It seems that Archer did a good job by using the plot but making it current by putting his personal touch on it.Among the different literary genres, I must admit that suspense thriller and romance are my least favorites I love reading read fiction, classics, memoirs and children s Sometimes, I also pick up books belonging to sci fi, young adult, travel, and history but I rarely read suspense thriller and romance I think the main reason is that these two follow certain formulas and the author should only inject the plot, characters, milieu, conflicts, climax, denouement and conclusion One cannot deviate from the formula since readers who go to the bookstore know what they want As examples, in suspense thriller, the issue must be resolved in the end while in romance, the boy and the girl should end up together In other words, they should have T happy endings.In fact, among the 500 novels I ve read, I ve only read Dan Brown s The Da Vinci Code, Angels and Demons and The Lost Symbol Ken Folett s The Eye of the Needle, Hornet s Nest and Whiteout John Le Carre s The Spy Who Came in From Cold Ian Fleming s Casino Royale Vince Flynn s Protect and Defend John Grisham s The Appeal and Robert Ludlum s The Ambler Warning.For me, among all of those, A Prisoner of Birth is one of the best, maybe comparable to those works by Le Carre and Fleming Archer is definitely better than Flynn, Ludlum and Grisham Archer is said to be the British equivalent of the American Grisham I do not agree with this For me, Archer is better than Grisham.Danny Cartwright is an illiterate man who is about to get married to Beth Wilson However, on the night of Danny s proposal to Beth, a drunk military man Spencer Craig kills Beth s brother Bernie Wilson who is with the couple on that night Spencer is with his 3 other friends who are all influential and the court gives weight on their testimonies in favor of Spencer So even if Danny is innocent, the jury gives him a guilty verdict imprisonment of 22 years In prison, Danny meets his lookalike Nicholas Moncrieff who is an ex soldier and an only scion of a rich businessman Nicholas taught Danny on how to read, write and act like him However, Nicholas is killed by a fellow prisoner and this gives opportunity for Danny to pretend to be Nicholas and see the outside world as a free man earlier than the completion of his sentence What follows is how he takes revenge over the 4 men who has wronged him and his fiancee Very engaging, detailed court scenes I have not been into an actual court hearing so I appreciated how Archer depicted in details the court drama The prison scenes are likewise very realistic and in the same interview, Archer said that he based everything on his own experienced Archer was also imprisoned in 2001 2003 for perjury and perverting the course of justice Source Wikipedia My only question are there still illiterate people in LondonI mean, in the Philippines, which is a third world country, illiterates seem to be too few that in my 46 years in the country, I only met one no read, no write person so far.Other than this, this novel is highly recommended for all suspense thriller fans If you love Grisham, I am telling you Archer is better. This is the most well written book to which I ve given a 1 It s also the first one star rating I ve given to Jeffrey Archer If you searched the words go to in my dictionary, you ll find a picture of Archer That s no longer true More than the first half of the book had some merit, but it was only about build up, promise, and expectation All three undercut, broken, and betrayed, respectively If a restaurant makes you wait for so long that you re not faint of hunger but bored, impatient, and surly, do you feel satisfied in any way when a bunch of tripe is served to you Of course no pun intended not that is not sweetening the deal This modern imagining of The Count Of Monte Christo is by contrast barbaric than the original The manner in which Beth s the new Mercedes and Danny s Edmond critical reunion is not depicted at all, is not a device or technique of the writer, but an admission that he doesn t have the talent or daring to write a true emotional scene that if pulled off, could have earned deserved plaudits for Archer I almost forgot to mention how my ability to suspend disbelief snapped when reading this I now know why so many book aficionados despise Archerhe has little respect for his readers For me he s a very good storyteller, but he must have been stoned when planning for A Prisoner of Birth How ironical it is that a story of an impostor is itself an impostor to Dumas pere s work. As a friend very rightly put it A Prisoner of Birth has all the makings of a Bollywood Masala Movie.Danny Cartwright, a humble East End mechanic has just proposed to his childhood sweet heart Beth He decides to celebrate by treating his fianc e and best friend Bernie Wilson who also happens to be Beth s brother at an upmarket bar The Dunlop Arms Also present at the bar, are a drunken party of four men, who started passing lewd comments at Beth and raise Bernie s ire Despite Danny s protests, the two parties decide to take the fight out into a back alley..and what follows is something that changes Danny s life forever.Danny is charged with the murder of Bernie a crime he never committed Despite the best efforts of his able lawyer, the young and relatively untried Alex Redmayne Danny is sentenced to twenty two years at the maximum security Belmarsh Prison After all who would take the word of a grubby mechanic over a stalwart quartet of an upcoming barrister, a leading actor, a member of the aristocrat and the youngest partner of an established firm Danny s long sentence is made bearable due to his two cell mates Sir Nicholas Moncrieff, who looks and behaves like an officer than an inmate And running true to form, the rough and rugged, heavily built Big Al Nicholas bears a startling resemblance to Danny and herein lies the crux When Nick is accidentally murdered, just a few weeks before his release Danny with careful mechanisations by Big Al walks out a free man as Nicholas MoncrieffAct like Nick.Think like DannyConstantly keeping this in mind Danny launches into an intricate and well planned revenge A page turner with certain implausible points Look alike Nicholas Moncrieff seemed to be aware from the beginning that his identity was for the sole purpose of being used to prove Danny s innocence He trained him in all the niceties and etiquettes which a Moncrieff should exhibit in genteel society He educated Danny and even conveniently maintained well transcribed diaries which proved to be valuable evidence in the later trials A post Belmarsh Danny appears to lead a charmed life All the people he hopes to have on his side, unflinchingly accept that he is indeed Sir Nicholas Moncrieff, never once cross checking the fact.While Danny Cartwright is a likeable hero, his transformation from the wronged East Ender to a polished and articulate businessman is a little too good to be true At the end of the day, I enjoyed the cast of supporting characters Big Al, Alex Redmayne s father rt Hon Sir Matthew Redmayne KCMG QC, who handles Danny s case in the end and ofcourse, the wise Scottish solicitor Mr.Fraser Munro.I particularly liked the miniscule speech Mr.Munro gives towards the end of his testimonyI have discovered with advancing years that few things are entirely black or white, but often different shades of grey I can best sum it up, My Lord, by saying that it was an honour to have served Sir Nicholas Moncrieff and it has been a privilege to work with Mr.Cartwright They are both oaks, even if they were planted in different forests But then, m lord, we all suffer in our different ways from being prisoners of birth.In all, an interesting saga with an Indian tadka This is one of the most enjoyable audiobooks I ve listened to all year I suppose it reminded me of this author s Clifton Chronicles which I also love on audio Similarities would be the theme of a poor young man trying to get out from under the thumb s of the rich Same guy going to prison for something he didn t do, leaving behind his fianc , at one point refusing to communicate with her again Now, the I think about it, the similarities I see yet this story stands on its own two feet.Even if you ve never read Archer before, this should be an enjoyable read Lots of legal twists the best one I did see coming and then I do like books that focus on revenge, sweet revenge.Following the book was a Q A with the author in which he revealed that reading The Count of Monte Cristo gave him insight on how to get someone out of prison and what would be required plot points to enable one to seek revenge Pretty fascinating. A Prisoner Of Birth by Jeffrey Archer is a modern retelling of the classic The Count Of Monte Christo The book follows story of a man who is wrongly convicted and now willing to extract revenge Sadly I have to say that I found this book the weakest among the books I read by Archer It seemed that Jeffrey Archer ran out of ideas while writing this novel A look alike prisoner , seriously Many of the incedents in the novel are needlessly put and these incedentes slows down the pace of the story This was the slowest moving story by Archer I have ever read The book is divided into five parts and in these parts almost every chapter has many weakly built characters and many loopholes The one thing that I liked about Jeffrey Archer was stout character building but this novel is full of lame characters Even the character of protagonist was not well built All other characters were appearing over long intervals Overall A Weak Book 2 Stars. Wow I felt like a 13 year old reading the final installment of Harry Potter Other than bathroom breaks and a quick dinner, I did not put this book down Jeffrey Archer is a master with characters, twists and storys within storys I am going to write a novel like this as soon as I can Q My lord, if a man cannot express his honestly held views in the Central Criminal Court, perhaps you can advise me where else he is free to state that which he believes to be the truth c Truly beatiful language, empowering scenery and ending I especially loved that the plot was very neat, overly so are there really that many lookalikes in reality, who cares I loved this book and it covers evrything.The author instantly became my favourite, I definitely will read his other books.