Customer Reviews


65 Reviews
5 star:
 (43)
4 star:
 (15)
3 star:
 (4)
2 star:    (0)
1 star:
 (3)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Utterley Gripping
I couldn't put Gang of One book down, it was utterley gripping. As the story unfolded and the tension and dread of what was ahead began to mount, I really felt like I was going through those emotions too, walking into Big Spring was terrifying. Gary writes openly about his experiences exposing his own thoughts and emotions throughout his extradition and imprisonment and...
Published on 11 Feb. 2012 by Christine

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Blame Others
Too anti USA -our justice system is beset with problems.Gary was quick to put all the blame for his troubles on the USA
Published 16 months ago by coach


‹ Previous | 1 27 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Utterley Gripping, 11 Feb. 2012
This review is from: Gang of One: One Man's Incredible Battle to Find his Missing Daughter (Hardcover)
I couldn't put Gang of One book down, it was utterley gripping. As the story unfolded and the tension and dread of what was ahead began to mount, I really felt like I was going through those emotions too, walking into Big Spring was terrifying. Gary writes openly about his experiences exposing his own thoughts and emotions throughout his extradition and imprisonment and gives a fascinating insight into this world. He brings to life the characters he meets along the way and manages to find humour in the most despairing of situations.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars gripping real life cautionary tale all young businessmen should read, 28 Feb. 2012
This review is from: Gang of One (Kindle Edition)
an unputdownable page turner from start to finish which is a must read for MPs considering whether to amend our extradition laws to the US. as a father of young children this heartbreaking story had me in bits from start to finish. far to close to the bone and makes you think twice about doing business in the US
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gang of One by Gary Mulgrew, 13 Feb. 2012
This review is from: Gang of One: One Man's Incredible Battle to Find his Missing Daughter (Hardcover)
I read this very quickly because it held my attention from the very beginning. A good page turner. It is quite incredible that not much has changed since the Shawshank Redemption days. That was fiction but Gary`s story is all the more incredible because it is true. A very good read.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gang of One, 22 Mar. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Gang of One: One Man's Incredible Battle to Find his Missing Daughter (Hardcover)
Gang of One is an inspiring and compelling read on a subject that is still all too relevant in todays newspapers.

It is an honest and moving account of a terrible ordeal. The book deals with raw emotional issues and will make you both laugh and cry. The "coping mechanisms" that Gary employed to get him through his time in Big Spring and the preparation beforehand are fascinating. Gary should be proud of how he coped with his situation in both Houston and in Big Spring and came out of the other side of this nightmare, ready to continue his search for Katrina.

I would thoroughly recommend this book and it would be a good "book club" book evoking plenty of discussion.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


17 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Gripping Read, 25 Jan. 2012
This review is from: Gang of One: One Man's Incredible Battle to Find his Missing Daughter (Hardcover)
I'm not too often concerned by tales of a convicted criminal, white-collar fraudester or not. Yet this book makes for extremely compelling (and worrying) reading. Mulgrew is disarmingly self-aware and gives real insight into the fears and heart-wrenching trauma of the consequences of being caught up in a prosecution that doesn't seem to match his conduct. I dread to think how many similar tales exist but remain untold. The book's funny and a tear jerker - sometimes at the same time. If you read it, bet you can't put it down (mine was stolen mid-read from me by family desperate to see for themselves what is gripping me so). I only hope we don't have to wait long for the sequel - with the happiest of endings in his finding his precious daughter. I wish him the greatest of luck in that search.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrifying and wonderful, but now I want to know more!, 17 Mar. 2012
By 
Gayle (Burwell, uk) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Gang of One: One Man's Incredible Battle to Find his Missing Daughter (Hardcover)
I have never written a review but after reading this book (and then getting my husband to read it too!) I felt I had to encourage others to. From the first few pages I was hooked, the strategies that Gary used to prepare himself for the nightmare that lay ahead were both funny and heart rendering. Nothing could really have prepared him for what was to come and I can still hardly believe that there are prisons effectively policed by gangs. Some part of the book made me laugh out loud (very rare for me when reading) but I think it was due to the relief from the tension that Gary managed to build, I was scared for him! The only critisism I have is that it was too short..... what happened when you left? Where is part 2? Fabulous read.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars George, 28 Feb. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Gang of One: One Man's Incredible Battle to Find his Missing Daughter (Hardcover)
Having spent 30 years in the prison service I was very keen on reading this book. It is a real heart wrending story of someone who was let badly down by the British Government. I enjoyed every page and just hope that Gary writes a sequel telling of his experiences prior to leaving America and on returning to Britain. It would be good to learn how his family had dealt with his absence and if (hopefully) he has been re-united with his daughter. I admire him for the stance he adopted during his sentence and of the fact that despite all he had gone through he still had feelings for others serving time. A real story of grit and determination and good old Glasgow "bottle".
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read the title, 26 Jan. 2012
This review is from: Gang of One: One Man's Incredible Battle to Find his Missing Daughter (Hardcover)
It says it in the title.

This book is not about the Natwest Three as such. It's the story of a Scottish ex-bannker who is chucked into a notorious US 'low security' prison. By 'low security' read 'highly dangerous'. Low level policing allows the gang culture of America's cities to rule. If an inmate doesn't belong to a gang, he is a nobody. A nobody has no protection and no respect - two vital ingredients for basic survival in this environment.

This man believes deeply in his own innocence, and is psychologically in pieces due to his enforced separation from his kids, whilst having to endure the terrifying experience of a US prison.

This book is a window onto the US legal and penal system. Whatever you do in your life, if you can possibly help it, don't get involved with either of them.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gang of One, 29 April 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Gang of One: One Man's Incredible Battle to Find his Missing Daughter (Hardcover)
Well written and presented story of life in a Texas prison. An eye opening and detailed description of the thoughts and fears of a man who had years of the ups and downs of the legal process to contend with prior to the final incarceration in what can only be described as a hell hole. The author paints an atmospheric and vivid picture of dark and pest ridden jail rooms jam packed with bunk beds where the prisoners were left to fend for themselves. One alternative was to join a gang for protection in numbers and live by their rules. The author however came up with his own plan for survival.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4.0 out of 5 stars USA to supportive bosses who were excellent mentors. His particular talent, 28 April 2015
The title of this book, Gang Of One, intrigued me. When I read the back of the book, I realised why the name of the author was familiar. Gary Mulgrew was one of the group of UK bankers known as The NatWest Three, or the Enron Three. They were British businessmen, Giles Darby, David Bermingham and Gary Mulgrew. In 2002 the three men were indicted in Houston, Texas, USA on seven counts of wire fraud against their former employer Greenwich Nat West which, at the time, a division of National Westminster Bank that was part of the Royal Bank of Scotland Group. After a high-profile battle in the British courts, the men were extradited from the United Kingdom to the US in 2006. The US sought the NatWest Three’s extradition, even though under UK law they had not committed a crime. A high-profile campaign against their extradition ended with a deal done directly between US President George W Bush and UK Prime Minister Tony Blair.

The charges claimed the three men co-ordinated the sale of NatWest’s holdings in various Enron related investments to a partnership controlled by Enron's chief financial officer Andrew Fastow. The partnership was “off-the-books” and allowed Enron’s liabilities to be hidden from investors. Allegedly with the help of Mulgrew and company, Fastow bought the shares from NatWest at below-market prices, then sold them for their real value, making more than $12m for himself and $7.3m jointly for the NatWest Three. Mulgrew and his co-accused were charged with defrauding the NatWest Bank through a business in the Cayman Islands. Their actions were said to have undermined Enron, whose collapse led to serious hardship amongst its investors and a thirst in the US for revenge.

This was the first of the big banking scandals. On 28 November 2007, they each pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud in exchange for the other charges being dropped. On 22 February 2008 they were each sentenced to 37 months in prison. Initially they were jailed in the US, but were later moved to UK prisons and were released in August 2010. So I borrowed the book for the non-fiction section of the library to find out what Mulgrew had to say.

Mulgrew was born in 1962 in Pollock, Glasgow, Scotland one of three brothers. When he was three months old, his father disappeared, leaving his mother to bring up the family on her own. She was unable to cope and the boys were taken into care and sent to a children’s home when Mulgrew was four. His mother subsequently got her children back, and held down two jobs, studied at night and rose through the ranks of Scottish politics to become a Labour Party MSP and deputy presiding officer of the Scottish parliament. She must have been a formidable woman. On leaving university, Mulgrew’s first job was as a bank teller at a NatWest branch in Manchester. His success at NatWest was notable. He worked for 17 years with Nat West and had postings to Tokyo, Japan and New York, USA to supportive bosses who were excellent mentors. His particular talent, however, was managing people well and making banking fun.

Gang of One is challenging because it invites the reader to make a decision about Mulgrew. On the one hand, he has had more than his fair share of hardships and he uses these to get sympathy. As a youngster he and his brothers spent two years in a children’s home when his mother was unable to cope and he was not well treated there. Back home, he had the choice of joining the local gangs or, as he did, sticking in at school and making it to university. He read business at the University of Strathclyde. The University of Strathclyde is a Scottish public research university located in Glasgow, Scotland.

On top of all this, his marriage broke up and his wife disappeared with his daughter. He has been hiring lawyers and investigators ever since to try to find her and this problem was hanging over him at the same time as lawyers were trying to keep him out of jail. When he went to face charges and imprisonment in America, he left his ten-year-old on in the care of his partner. He describes taking leave of his son very movingly. All that puts the reader on his side. So, Gang of One is the story of Mulgrew’s time in a Texas jail.

Mulgrew grew up in Glasgow, “doing time” as he puts it in Pollok which, he claims, helped develop the survival skills needed in Big Spring. The Federal Correctional Institution, Big Spring is a low-security United States federal prison for male inmates in Texas. FCI Big Spring is located in the city of Big Spring, Texas, USA midway between Dallas and El Paso and is operated by the Federal Bureau of Prisons. That is a division of the United States Department of Justice. When Mulgrew told fellow inmates that he came from Pollock, it gave him an advantage because they thought he had been transferred from Pollock prison in Louisiana. The United States Penitentiary, Pollock is a high-security United States federal prison for male inmates in Louisiana. Big Spring was tough in jail, but that is what you expect because he was a criminal. He was a criminal getting the punishment he deserved. He did, after all, eventually admit guilt in order, he says, to reduce his sentence after extradition and receive earlier release. However, the closest Mulgrew comes to an admission of fault let alone guilt is “My actions hadn’t passed the morality test” and that he was “making a negative contribution to society”. He does not, throughout the book, seem to accept his guilt nor does he show any remorse.

Nevertheless, the book raises other issues. One is the conditions in the US jail where Mulgrew's life and welfare were in jeopardy so he chose to be a Gang of One rather than take sides and join any of the other gangs. It was bad in jail, but not that it was all bad as he says he saw, “a lot more dignity and pride and care there than I’d seen in many other walks of life.” There is no doubt that the author had to dig deep into his inner strengths at time. Some of the descriptions of people, places and occurrences are vivid and fascinating.

I did, however, have very mixed feelings about this book and its author. Mulgrew's ability to manage people is evident throughout Gang of One and I felt, as the reader, I was being manipulated to take his side and ignore the millions of dollars Mulgrew and his associates defrauded from the financial system. Still, it is a gripping story. Notwithstanding my reservations, I am very glad that I read this book and I highly recommend it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 27 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Gang of One: One Man's Incredible Battle to Find his Missing Daughter
Used & New from: £0.01
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews