Brittney Griner to Write Memoir About ‘Harrowing Experience’ in Russian Prison
Britteny Griner is ready to tell her story. On Tuesday, Griner, the basketball star who spent 10 months incarcerated in Russia, announced plans to release a memoir next spring detailing her traumatic experience.
“That day was the beginning of an unfathomable period in my life which only now am I ready to share,” Griner said in a statement about her time in a Russian prison, per the Associated Press.
Griner was arrested in February 2022 for carrying cannabis vape cartridges into Russia, where she arrived to join UMMC Ekaterinburg, the basketball team she’s played for during offseasons since 2014. (After being found guilty and sentenced to almost a decade in prison, she was released during a prisoner swap in late December.)
“The primary reason I traveled back to Russia for work that day was because I wanted to make my wife, family, and teammates proud,” she said in the statement. “After an incredibly challenging 10 months in detainment, I am grateful to have been rescued and to be home.”
She added, “Readers will hear my story and understand why I’m so thankful for the outpouring of support from people across the world.”
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The book aims to raise awareness for other Americans who are unjustly detained overseas, including reporter Evan Gershkovick who is accused of espionage by Russia. Publisher Alfred Knopf said the memoir would be “intimate and moving” and would go into “vivid detail” about her “harrowing experience” of being detained.
“Griner also describes her stark and surreal time living in a foreign prison and the terrifying aspects of day-to-day life in a women’s penal colony,” the announcement for the book read. “At the heart of the book, Griner highlights the personal turmoil she experienced during the near ten-month ordeal and the resilience that carried her through to the day of her return to the United States last December.”