In this video, Oprah announces That Bird Has My Wings
, Jarvis Jay Masters' astounding 2009 memoir, as her latest Oprah's Book Club selection. Masters has been incarcerated in California's San Quentin State Prison for the past 41 years.
Oprah read the book in 2009, shortly after it was first published by HarperOne, and it left a strong impression: "Years ago, I was given a memoir by Jarvis Jay Masters," said Oprah. "His story, of a young boy victimized by addiction, poverty, violence, the foster care system and later the justice system, profoundly touched me then, and still does today." HarperOne has reissued the book, which contains a foreword by spiritual teacher Pema Chödrön, who has long championed Masters's cause.
In 1981, Masters was first convicted of armed robbery at the age of 19, crimes he freely admits to. Four years later, a prison guard was stabbed to death while on night duty at San Quentin. Though Masters was locked in his cell at the time, he was among those convicted of his murder. Masters has been on death row ever since, and now awaits word on whether he will be granted a new trial. He has long maintained his innocence, and that claim is supported by evidence.
Over the next weeks, Oprah will be discussing the book with Oprah's Book Club followers on the OBC social platforms, culminating with a one-on-one interview with Jarvis Jay Masters from San Quentin. Oprah Daily
will be publishing additional content throughout the reading cycle, including an excerpt from That Bird Has My Wings
, and an original poem by Masters.
Get the book now in the Apple Books app
on your iPhone or iPad.