I had heard so much about the TV series but I wanted to "read" the book first. I finished the book, then I watched the first episode of the series. Wow! They are nothing alike! I enjoyed the book a lot, although at times it seemed like a bunch of little stories that just ended, with no connection to each other. Overall though, I still enjoyed it. The connections Piper made and the relationships she formed were very interesting and touching.
The thing I LIKED about the book is that it had a lot of serious social commentary about the American judicial and penal systems. I saw none of that in the TV series. It seemed like they took the basic premise of the book and re-wrote it as a black comedy for TV. If you're looking for comedy you'll probably be disappointed in the book.
I agree with other readers... I was disappointed that it didn't follow up with her life after prison. I was eager to find out if she kept in touch with any of her prison friends. I guess maybe she's saving that for the sequel? Also, the writing wasn't a masterpiece but the subject matter kept my interest and I was always anxious to hear the next chapter.
I liked Cassandra's dramatization of the different characters in the book.
The part where the guard took Piper to the lake was memorable.
Sue Williams' stories of her travels were exciting, engaging, and quite funny. I found myself laughing out loud at times. I listened to the book while driving and I found myself wanting to continue listening once I got to my destination.
I love Amanda Hulme's (the reader's) accent and the emotion in her voice as she reads the book. It really seems as if the author herself is telling the story. She also does a great job of speaking in different voices and accents for the various characters in the stories.
The author gets herself into some crazy and scary situations. Sometimes it seems that her decisions were foolhardy but she always comes out alive in the end, and with an exciting story to tell. I was a little disappointed that the stories seemed to end just as the author reached her destinations but then I guess that's the whole premise of the book: that the journey itself is the best (or worst) part of travelling. I think this book would make a very entertaining movie.
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