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An immediate sensation upon its publication in 1969, Papillon is a vivid memoir of brutal penal colonies, daring prison breaks and heroic adventure on shark-infested seas. Condemned for a murder he did not commit, Henri Charriere, nicknamed Papillon, was sent to the penal colony of French Guiana. Forty-two days after his arrival he made his first break for freedom, travelling a thousand gruelling miles in an open boat. He was recaptured and put into solitary confinement but his spirit remained untamed: over thirteen years he made nine incredible escapes, including from the notorious penal colony on Devil's Island. This edition of Papillon, one of the greatest adventure stories ever told, includes an exclusive new essay by Howard Marks.