Books

  • ACLU National Prison Project - ​The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) National Prison Project (NPP) handles class action lawsuits to ensure that conditions of confinement in prisons, jails, and other places of detention are constitutional and consistent with health, safety, and human dignity. The NPP does not handle cases on behalf of individual prisoners and does not assist individual prisoners with their criminal cases or post-conviction matters. Litigation is usually limited to cases involving major class actions challenging prison conditions or related matters.

  • AFSC Prison Watch Project - American Friends Service Committee Prison Watch Project has published the Fifth Edition of the Survivors Manual: Surviving in Solitary, by Bonnie Kerness, (June 2012, 94 pages), which is free to prisoners and $3 for all others. This book is a powerful collection of voices from solitary, as people currently or formerly held in isolation vividly describe their conditions and their daily lives. The collection also includes some stunning artwork and poetry.

  • A Jailhouse Lawyer's Manual, 9th edition - A Jailhouse Lawyer's Manual, 9th edition, 2011, 1077 pages, $30.00. c/o Columbia Human Rights Law Review - Attn: JLM Order - 435 West 116th Street - New York, NY 10027 212-854-1601  Fax: 212-854-7946  A Jailhouse Lawyer's Manual (JLM) is a handbook of legal rights and procedures designed to inform prisoners of their rights and how use to judicial process to secure these rights on both the federal and state level, with an emphasis on New York State law. The additional Immigration & Consular Access Supplement (102 pages) contains information about the immigration law consequences of criminal convictions for people who are not U.S. Citizens. JLM is $30 if shipped directly to prisoners; $105 for all others. The Supplement is $5 for prisoners, $22 for all others. No stamps accepted as payment. Free shipping and handling. (Please note that JLM is available for free by individual chapter if downloaded from the above-listed website by an outside source, printed out, and mailed in to the prisoner.)

  • AK Press - AK Press publishes and distributes a wide variety of radical literature and audio, many directly relating to prisoner and policing issues. Certain titles are written by prisoners themselves. Offers prisoners a 30% discount on any/all purchases. Distributes some Spanish language titles but do not have a Spanish language catalog.

  • Appalachian Prison Book Project - Provides books to prisoners in the Appalachian region; KY, MD, OH, TN, VA, & WV. Serves imprisoned men and women in the states of Kentucky, Maryland, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia.

  • Asheville Prison Books Project - Group meets weekly to mail free reading material to inmates in facilities in GA, NC, SC, & TN. Each request is met with a package containing several books, personally selected by volunteers out of the donated library; or by the prisoner's request if available.

  • Asheville Prison Books Programs - Sends free reading material to indigent inmates in facilities in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia and Tennessee. Also sends National Prisoners Resource List to those who request it. Can sometimes provide books in Spanish. Donations gladly accepted!

  • Athens Books to Prisoners - Free books to prisoners in Ohio only.

  • Book 'Em - Volunteers meet weekly at the Thomas Merton Center to organize and prepare books to ship. Book 'Em serves prisoners from Pennsylvania only.  Prisoners may request books by subject.

  • Book 'Em - Mainly serving prisoners from PA, VA, and WV. Will serve large-print readers and Native American Indian prisoners from elsewhere as well. Request by subject.

  • Books 4 Prisoners Crew - Free books to prisoners in Ohio, Indiana, and Texas only. Sends "Inside Out: A Resource Guide for the Incarcerated" to all US prisoners, send 85 cents in stamps, embossed envelopes, or money order made out to Books for Prisoners. Free world, send $6. Does not accept county jail prisoners' requests from outside of Ohio.

  • Books Through Bars - Either the prisoner or their family or friends can send us a letter, through the regular mail, that includes name, prisoner ID number, full address, any institution restrictions on incoming books, and types of books wanted. We send books only to individual prisoners in DE, MD, NJ, NY, PA, VA, & WV. Please request by topic (not exact title or author), and provide several areas of interest if possible. Please wait a few months after receiving books before requesting again.

  • Books Through Bars - Ithaca. An all-volunteer operated, community-based organization that sends books mainly to the most populated states: NY, TX, FL, CA, PA. Ships to many other states throughout the country as well.

  • Books Through Bars - NYC - Specializes in political and history books, and also literary fiction and other educational books with a priority for New York prisoners. Does not send religious literature. Fills requests from all states except AL, FL, LA, MA, MI, MS, NC, PA, & OH. Donations of stamps are appreciated.

  • Books Through Bars - NYC - Ships to prisoners nationwide. Specializes in political and history books. Occasionally sends fiction and educational books. No religious literature. Donations of stamps and cash are appreciated.

  • Books to Prisoners - Free books to prisoners nationwide. Request by subject, no religious or legal materials. Donations appreciated. Does not ship to prisons that require all books sent be new.

  • Books to Prisoners-Olympia - Sends quality used books free of charge to prisoners all over.

  • Books to Prisoners-Bellingham - Free books to prisoners nationwide. Request by subject, no religious materials or legal materials. Donations appreciated. Does NOT ship to prisons that require all books sent to be new.  

  • Campaign to End the Death Penalty - A national grassroots abolitionist organization that works with prisoners, family members and organizers. CEDP publishes a newsletter called "The New Abolitionist," which is provided free to prisoners.

  • Changing Lives Through Literature - An alternative sentencing program based on the power of literature to transform lives through reading and group discussion. This visionary approach has proven itself as a successful alternative to traditional sentencing methods and has been implemented throughout the United States and the world.

  • Chicago Books to Women in Prison - Chicago Books to Women in Prison (CBWP) is an all-volunteer collective that mails paperback books to people who are incarcerated in women's prisons in AZ, CA, CT, FL, IL, IN, KY, MO, & OH. CBWP is dedicated to offering women behind bars the opportunity for self-empowerment, education, and entertainment that reading provides. Incarcerated women send their requests for books directly to CBWP, which then gathers on Sunday afternoons to fill the requests.

  • Cleveland Books 2 Prisoners - Free books to prisoners in Ohio only. Cleveland Books 2 Prisoners

  • Correctional Library Services - Correctional Services publishes Connections (268 pages, 2014), an annual guide and directory of resources in New York City available to help people when they are leaving correctional facilities. Connections also serves as a guide on preparing for the world of work, and is the most exhaustive re-entry guidebook in New York City. The booklet is free to those incarcerated in New York State prisons and local jails.

  • DC Prison Book Project - Sends donated reading material to prisoners and educates the public about issues surrounding prisoner education and literacy.  Give about a 3 month turnaround time.

  • Education Behind Bars - Prison education is a concept whose time has come. Education Behind Bars is both a reference guide and a social policy title. Half of the book is dedicated to the need for prison education, its history, travails, current situation, and the refutation of arguments against it. The other half of the book is directed toward the incarcerated student with an up-to-date listing of numerous educational opportunities. Education Behind Bars is the most comprehensive study of prison education on the market to date. One can read Education Behind Bars from cover to cover, or read only the second half which contains detailed descriptions of hundreds of available educational programs.

  • Freebird Publishers - Freebird Publishers - Publisher of Inmate Shopper & More</a> - Freebird Publishers Publications include: Inmate Shopper - The largest most up to date prison publication, The Best 500 - A book of non profit pro and more.

  • Gainsville Books for Prisoners - Covers prisoners nationwide. Accepts requests by topic of interest only.

  • Georgetown Law Journal Annual Review of Criminal Procedure - The 42nd edition of the Georgetown Law Journal Annual Review of Criminal Procedure (ARCP) is $25 if shipped directly to prisoners; $85 for all others. The ARCP provides readers with objective, concise and accurate overview of criminal procedure and recent case-law decisions in the United States Supreme Court and each of the 12 Federal Circuit Courts. The ARCP serves as a practical aid to a diverse readership that includes prosecutors and defense attorneys, judges and their law clerks, and prisoners assisting in their own defense or appeal. The $25 discounted rate is only honored for orders sent directly to correctional facilities. Refunds are not available. Orders are shipped USPS, so please allow 4-6 weeks for delivery. Individuals with a DC address must add 6% sales tax; VA add 5.0%; MD add 6.0%; NY add 7.0%; and PA add 6.0%. Free shipping and handling.

  • Groundwork Books Collective - 4 Prisoners Program - Nationwide. Only one book per request. Request by subject. 

  • Human Kindness Foundation - The Human Kindness Foundation's (HKF) Prison-Ashram Project sends free books to inmates all over the world, with most of their materials written by the late Bo Lozoff. HKF stresses a way of life based upon three common principles taught by the great sages of all religions: Simple living, a dedication to service, and a commitment to personal spiritual practice. Write for their newsletter and list of available books.  

  • Inmate Shopper - Inmate Shopper is a shopping guide and services directory for inmates and was created by a prisoner, George Kayer, who has researched the over 300 businesses listed in the guide for more than the past six years. Inmate Shopper informs its readers about established and newer companies and offers information on pen pal services, scams, opportunities, contests, and places to sell their writing, arts, and crafts. Inmate Shopper also lists pen pal websites, personal assistants, gift boutiques, businesses that want to send prisoners their catalog and nearly 100 contests for prison writers, poets and artists. Order online, or send a check or money order for $17.99 + $7.00 (priority shipping) to the above address.

  • Inside Books Project - Sends free books and literature to prisoners in Texas only. Does not accept requests for hardcover books or bibles. Also sends a very informative prisoner resource guide free to prisoners in all states. All volunteer, non-profit organization sending free books and educational materials to people in prison in the state of Texas.

  • Internationalist Prison Books Collective - Volunteer collective that sends books to prisoners in Mississippi, Alabama, and parts of North Carolina. Has fiction as well as political and legal nonfiction. Also prints prisoners' art, writing, and news in a regular biannual publication.

  • Islamic Education Center - Free Koran and beginner or advanced study guides. Can do return mail care of the chaplain. Provides written information in Arabic and English.

  • Jailhouse Lawyers Handbook - The Jailhouse Lawyers Handbook, published jointly by the National Lawyers Guild and the Center for Constitutional Rights, explains how a prisoner can start a lawsuit in federal court to fight against mistreatment and bad conditions in prison. Because most prisoners are in state prisons, the authors focus on those. However, people in federal prisons and city or county jails will be able to use the Handbook also. To receive a paperbound copy, mail $2.00 in money order, check, or stamps to the above address. Please note that the Handbook is also available for free if downloaded from either of the below-listed websites by an outside source, printed out, and mailed in to the prisoner. List of chapter headings: (1) Introduction; (2) Your Legal Options; (3) Your Rights in Prison; (4) Structuring Your Lawsuit; (5) How to Start Your Lawsuit; (6) Legal System & Research; (7) The Legal System and Legal Research; and 12 appendices. https://jailhouselaw.org or https://ccrjustice.org/files/Report_JailHouseLawyersHandbook.pdf 

  • Jail Library Group - Our mission is to provide educational, recreational and community resource reading materials to the
    residents of the jail facilities in Dane County, Wisconsin. The Jail Library Group is dedicated to meeting the educational,
    recreational and community resource reading needs of the jail residents.

  • Louisiana Books 2 Prisoners - We currently serve only the following four states: AL, AR, MS, and LA.  Letters from Louisiana and women prisoners are given priority, with all other letters answered in the order in which we receive them. Mails free reading materials to prisoners in every state except California and Texas. Does not send to city or county jails. Ask for a few general types or categories of books. Limit to one request every three months.

  • Mettanokit Outreach - Mettanokit is a non-profit learning center and service organization working for a more human society based on the old values of cooperation and equality and the closeness and caring found in our elder tribal societies. Part of their program is offering Native circles in prisons, with 10 of these circles currently in New England prisons. Description of these may be found in the book Ending Violent Crime. Descriptions of the Native American traditions that provide an understanding for much of this work may be found in the book Return to Creation. Write for further information and list of books for sale. 

  • Microcosm Publishing - Write for catalog. Offers 50% discount to prisoners on some titles.  Stamps accepted for payment.

  • Midwest Books to Prisoners - Free books to Midwest prisoners.

  • Midwest Pages to Prisoners Project - The Midwest Pages to Prisoners Project is an all-volunteer effort that strives to encourage self-education among prisoners in the United States.

  • National Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty - Publishes "Lifelines," a quarterly newspaper about what's going on in the struggle for death penalty abolition. Does not offer legal resources.

  • National Lawyers Guild Prison Law Project - The National Lawyers Guild (NLG) helps publish the Jailhouse Lawyers Handbook (see separate listing) on bringing civil rights claims alleging violation of constitutional rights in prison or jail. NLG does not provide lawyers or legal assistance, but does provide free membership for jailhouse lawyers. 

  • Pathfinder Press - Pathfinder Press carries books on the works of revolutionary and working class leaders, in English, Spanish, French, Farsi, Arabic, Swedish, Greek, Chinese, Russian, and Indonesian. Prisoners receive a 50% discount off the cover price. Only orders placed through their online website are accepted (orders received by mail or fax CANNOT be processed), with a flat rate of $2.75 for shipping and handling per order (one or more titles). Write for a free catalog. 

  • PM Press - PM Press carries counter-culture, anti-prison, and similar titles including The Prison-Industrial Complex and the Global Economy, The Debt Resisters' Operations Manual, and Until the Rulers Obey. Prisoners receive a 50% discount. Write for a free catalog.

  • Prison Ashram Project - The Human Kindness Foundation's (HKF) Prison-Ashram Project sends free books to inmates all over the world, with most of their materials written by the late Bo Lozoff. HKF stresses a way of life based upon three common principles taught by the great sages of all religions: Simple living, a dedication to service, and a commitment to personal spiritual practice. Write for their newsletter and list of available books.

  • Prison Book Program - Offers a free 6-page "National Prisoner Resource List" and 40-page "We the People" legal primer, and a free resource list for LGBTQ prisoners. Does not send books or any other materials to any jails; or to any prisons in CA, IL, MI, NV, TX, and MD (except Jessup and Hagerstown), and certain individual prisons. Books may be delayed up to 4 to 6 months. Allows two book shipments per year. Does not send books to CA, MA, MD, MI, PA, KY, LA, NV or TX.  Offers a free 6-page National Prisoner Resource List and 40-page "We the People" legal primer. Allows two book shipments per year.  Takes 3 to 6 months.

  • Prison Book Project - Open Books is a non-profit, volunteer-run bookstore. Proceeds from the sale of books support the Prison Book Project, which sends thousands of books each year to indigent inmates in Florida prisons.

  • Prison Book Project - Serves prisoners in New England and TX only. Request books by subject. No mailing list or catalogue; no hardback books.

  • Prisoner Express - Sends books nationwide. Promotes rehabilitation by offering inmates information, education and the opportunity for creative self-expression in a public forum.  

  • Prisoner Self-Help Manual to Challenge Gang Validation - This manual is for prisoners who have been validated by CDCR as a gang member or associate, but have no real links or gang activity. Prisoners and advocates say that in addition to making "false validations," the CDCR keeps some prisoners in solitary indefinitely based on gang validations that are a decade or more old (despite a federal court decision that was supposed to end such practices). Send check, money order, or stamps. Free shipping and handling.

  • Prisoners Literature Project - The Prisoners Literature Project is a grassroots organization that sends free books to prisoners in the US. Request types of books, not specific titles, Stamps are greatly appreciated. No Texas requests. No Texas or Oregon requests. Request by subject. Stamps or donations greatly appreciated.

  • Prison Libraries Group of Clip - The Prison Libraries Group serves the interest of all members concerned with the provision of
    library services to prison communities. The Group is committed to improving the quality of the service while raising the profile
    of prison libraries.

  • The Prison Library Project - Provides educational books, self-help, personal/spiritual growth, wellness, general fiction and non-fiction. No law or technical books. Does not send books to county jails or city jails; nor to prisons in HA, ME, MI, MS, NE, NV, PA (except Waymire), VA, or WI. Free books on self-help, personal and spiritual growth, wellness, metaphysical, fiction and non-fiction. Delivers to only state and federal prisoners.  No catalogue. Free resource guide on request.

  • Prison Mindfulness Institute - Mission is to provide prisoners, and those who work with them, with the most effective contemplative tools for self-transformation and rehabilitation. Provides books and educational materials.

  • Providence Books Through Bars - Requests are received for reading materials from inmates nationwide. Be sure to include mailing address with Prisoner ID# as well as subject matter preferences.

  • Read Between the Bars - Read Between the Bars is a grassroots collective in Tucson that originated in March 2007. We focus on getting free books directly into the hands of incarcerated women and men in the state of Arizona.

  • RedBird Books to Prisoners - RedBird Books-to-Prisoners is a small all-volunteer group dedicated to providing Ohio prisoners with free reading materials. Please send requests by subject.

  • South End Press - Radical books, 50% discount for prisoners. Write for catalog. Radical publisher with wide range selections, including 1994 anthology (Criminal Injustice) edited by PARC founder Eli Rosenblatt. 50% discount to prisoners.

  • Spring Grass Book 'Em - Spring Grass Book 'Em is a free books-to-prisoners program that mails books to inmates nationwide (except for PA which is served by Book 'Em--same address). Request books and magazines by subject or title and/or author, or just request "any." No catalog is available and some books may be substituted for those requested due to scarcity (e.g., an encyclopedia volume may be substituted for a world almanac). Please let Spring Grass Book 'Em know of any book restrictions (or changes to any restrictions), or upon transfer to a different institution. 

  • Urbana-Champaign Books to Prisoners Project - UC Books to Prisoners is an Urbana Illinois based project providing books at no cost by mail to inmates in state and federal prisons in Illinois as well as through two county jail libraries in Illinois.

  • Urbana-Champagne Books to Prisoners Project - Sends various books to state & federal prisoners in Illinois. Has large selection of novels.

  • Wisconsin Books to Prisoners Project - Sends various books to state & federal prisoners in Wisconsin. Has large selection of novels. Request by subject category.

  • Women's Prison Book Project - Women's Prison Book Project (WPBP) provides women in prison with free reading materials covering a wide range of topics from law and education (dictionaries, GED, etc.) to fiction, politics, history, and women's health. Women prisoners only and no jail requests. WPBP also has a free resource guide for women and trans prisoners and a newsletter which publishes prisoner articles.   

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