“Walls, Wire, Bars and Souls” is now available

Thanks for being patient with me through all the long-drawn-out preparations to publish my memoir of prison chaplaincy.

“Walls, Wire, Bars and Souls” is now available at Amazon.com.  (If you’d like to ‘try before you buy’, you can ‘look inside the book’ to read the first 21 pages of the Kindle edition – click on the cover image at the link to see them.  That’ll give you a reasonable idea what it’s about.)

As always, no Digital Rights Management (DRM) has been imposed on the Kindle edition.  For those who don’t have Kindle e-book readers or software, the lack of DRM means that you can easily convert the file into whatever format you choose.  The latest version of Calibre (which is free to download) will convert Amazon’s MOBI file into EPUB (used by Barnes and Noble’s NOOK reader) or any of several other formats of your choice.  I use it myself as a conversion tool – it’s very useful.

I’m really on tenterhooks about this book, hoping that it’ll succeed in the marketplace.  The subject is very important to me, and I’ve long been unhappy about how few books portray the reality of life behind bars.  Those by current and former inmates tend to dramatize and glorify their side of the story, and demonize prison authorities (mostly unfairly).  Those by former guards or executives go to the opposite extreme.  I haven’t yet found a book that tries to look at both sides of the story;  so that’s the book I’ve tried to write.  It’s as fair, honest and balanced as I know how to make it.

I hope and pray ‘Walls, Wire, Bars and Souls’ succeeds in getting more people interested in one of the largest single social issues confronting the USA today.  We’re spending as much, if not more, on incarcerating convicts and the criminal justice system as we are on national defense – and much of it is wasted or unnecessary expenditure.  If we don’t reform the system soon, it’s going to grow into an unmanageable, self-perpetuating monstrosity.  I hope my book will contribute to finding a solution.

As always, I’ll be very grateful if you’ll please spread the word about the book’s availability.  Those of you who have your own blogs or social media pages, please mention it to your readers, if you’d be so kind.  Also, if you purchase a copy, please, please leave a review on Amazon.com!  That’s vitally important to inform other potential readers about what to expect.

Thanks to many of you for your encouragement and support during the writing of this book.  A lot of my life has gone into it.  I hope and pray it bears good fruit.



  1. Having read about the formatting issues.. why not use LaTex?

    Plenty of people who self-publish books, namely academics swear by it.

    Probably no rocket science also..

  2. @Anonymous: LaTex doesn't interface with Kindle, AFAIK. That's why it's not used as input to Amazon's Kindle conversion program.

  3. Got the Kindle version for myself and the paperback to pass on to the Air Force Village, where all my books go. Been busy today so only a short time to read, but the Foreword and Introduction certainly have me interested. Congrats on the publication,Peter.

  4. My paperback went to Kindle finally. Now I'm formatting the sequel for Amazon myself, and cutting out the middle man….I hope I can do it.

    And I will CERTAINLY check out the first few pages before I download it. I love having the "look inside" offering on my book, and now you have it too. It's a GOOD thing!

    Be proud.

  5. Started reading about three hours ago and it feels like three minutes.
    This book is impossible to put down, at least for me!

    Thank you, Peter. I cannot imagine the hard work you must have gone through to write this. And, above all, thank you for your service. I'm going to recommend your book to a dear friend who is a prison guard.

    Jeff F.

  6. @Gerry: Sure. Send me an e-mail (address is in my blog profile), and I'll send you my mailing address. Thanks for your support!

  7. Just finished my initial read-through after downloading it last night, and was very impressed by the insight you provided regarding our justice system and the fringes of our society in general.
    I plan on re-reading it in depth next week and offering my opinion on my blog.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts and memories of your experience in the correctional system, and I look forward to your future posts on your blog and anything else you would publish.

  8. I've been looking forward to this and I have not been disappointed.

    I am halfway through WWB&S now and it is fascinating. I've managed to talk a couple people into buying their own copies and I hope they appreciate the book as much as I do.

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