"With the eloquence of a gifted sage, Earl A. Smith delivers a kind of visceral imagery that can only be acquired by firsthand knowledge of a life lived on both sides of the bars. He is uniquely qualified to bring the untold tales of faith, endurance, and perseverance from inside one of the world’s most notorious prisons."
– Bishop T.D. Jakes
“This book shows how one man’s life was changed not by iron bars, but by a leather book. That book allowed him to open his heart towards the love that God had for him, which changed his life, changed his household, and ultimately changed the trajectory of the future generations of his family.”
– Mike Singletary, coach and NFL Hall of Famer
“A riveting, clear-eyed but supremely compassionate journey, through one of the darkest corners of the American judicial system. Death Row Chaplain compels the reader to a renewed assessment and appreciation of the human potential for constructive, even inspired, change.”
– Harry Edwards, Ph.D., professor emeritus of sociology, U.C. Berkeley and consultant for the San Francisco Forty Niners, the NFL, and the NBA
“Chaplain Earl Smith is a man of real integrity and unusually effective in dealing with inmates in prison. He also has enjoyed great ability in communicating as a chaplain for the San Francisco 49ers and the Golden State Warriors. He is highly socially mobile being able to deal with the elite athletes in the world and the most notorious criminals. There are very few ministers that have this range of communication abilities, but Earl certainly does.”
– Bill Glass, founder of the largest prison ministry in America, Beyond the Walls
“Earl Smith traces his remarkable journey from a crime-filled youth, including a near-death experience at the wrong end of a gun, to his ministries to the most hardened of criminals at San Quentin. It is a tale of redemption that has lessons for us all, including the emancipating power of forgiveness over the coercive reflex of revenge.”
– Thomas D. Gardner, former president of Reader’s Digest U.S. Books and Home Entertainment
“The stories of triumph and the stories of adversity are the stories that allow us to evolve. I hope you read this book and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. You will be truly inspired.”
– Ronnie Lott, NFL Hall of Famer
"Rev. Earl Smith's book takes us into San Quentin, an unforgiving and forgotten dark place where the light of God is powerfully at work. The inspirational stories from behind the bars remind us that grace and mercy is for all people—a message for everyone."
– Rev. Dr. Pablo R. Diaz, Vice President of Ministries, Guideposts
"Smith's stories reveal the power of redemption in the lives of those whom society thinks are unsalvageable."
– Publishers Weekly