With a career, a boyfriend, and a loving family, Piper Kerman barely resembles the reckless young woman who delivered a suitcase of drug money 10 years ago. But that past has caught up with her. Convicted and sentenced to 15 months at the infamous federal correctional facility in Danbury, Connecticut, the well-heeled Smith College alumna is now inmate #11187-424 - one of the millions of women who disappear "down the rabbit hole" of the American penal system.
From her first strip search to her final release, Kerman learns to navigate this strange world with its strictly enforced codes of behavior and arbitrary rules, where the uneasy relationship between prisoner and jailer is constantly and unpredictably recalibrated. She meets women from all walks of life, who surprise her with small tokens of generosity, hard words of wisdom, and simple acts of acceptance. Heartbreaking, hilarious, and at times enraging, Orange is the New Black offers a rare look into the lives of women in prison, why it is we lock so many away, and what happens to them when they're there.
©2010 Piper Kerman (P)2012 Tantor
"Fascinating....The true subject of this unforgettable audiobook is female bonding and the ties that even bars can't unbind." (People)
Piper benefits once again simply because of her status in society and the color of her skin. I should have read other reviews before contributing to her pocketbook. Her writing is distant and pretentious. She simply tried too hard to tell her story.
The platform she has in writing this book had the potential to benefit incarcerated women in America. Instead, she overlooked this opportunity to benefit herself.
I find anything about the prison system interesting. I enjoyed hearing about what life is like in a minimum security prison for basically non-violent criminals. It was interesting to hear someone's perspective
She could have been a little more real. I feel like she sugar coated a lot of her experiences, and was a little too fluffy about her friends in prison. Most of her stories were just little stories that never lead to anything very interesting. She spent a lot of time almost... boasting... about most of her experiences. I only got glimses of tough times, and I know that can't be right. Most of her stories had too much sentimentality in them. I got bored.
No I haven't, but she is a good narrator.
Tell people the show is way more interesting than the real story.
The TV writers make a much more interesting story about life in prison. I am curious to see how the TV writers came up with such different ideas. I would like to know if they interviewed other inmates and got the real (not sugary, sentimental) versions or if they just made it up as they went along?
I gave this book 3 stars because it was able to hold my attention to the end. However, Piper Kerman is at best a good college writer. Her commentary on the prison system is well said, and I would love to see her on a TED stage or starting up a program to fight mass incarceration in America. I think she would be incredible at that. But, she is not a very good storyteller. She doesn't understand anything about building tension or foreshadowing. I think this would have been better if someone else had written her story, which I suppose is what the TV show is! ;-)
This was the worst book I have listened to in a long time. There is so much white guilt and bragging about her background and feeling sorry for her cell mates that I could barely focus on the story. She comes from a very privileged background and makes that very clear to the point where none of the other characters are given any voice at all. Horrible. I can't believe this story got popular.
Love a good story and will read just about anything except Sci-Fi, Supernatural/Zombie/Vampire novels. Not snobby--don't enjoy them.
What is rich and nuanced in the television show comes across in print as the poor, poor, pitiful me whining of a rich, priviledged white girl who got caught. I couldn't help thinking about what was happening to the other women--the one's without private lawyers and rich parents to fight to reduce their culpulbility and sentences. Don't do the crime if you can't do the time, Piper. Hope she is splitting her riches with the more interesting women in the book.
Netflix is better. this was kinda boring. read well, but not much story. like more than half the story is missing, no drama, makes prison life sound somewhat easy.
I like Jack Reacher style characters regardless of setting. Put them in outer space, in modern America, in a military setting, on an alien planet... no worries. Book has non moralistic vigilante-justice? Sign me up! (oh, I read urban fantasy, soft and hard sci-fi, trashy vampire and zombie novels too)
I read this book before even being aware that it was also a TV show. I have since watched the show on Netflix. The two are completely and absolutely unrelated. The book is a serious look at the experiences Piper had while in prison, and is billed as a memoire, which it is. The TV show is a dramatization loosely based on the premise of the memoire - a woman going to prison unexpectedly - but that is where the similarity ends. The TV show is billed as a comedy. A dark comedy, probably, but still a comedy.
It was an interesting look at prison from the point of view of a non-traditional inmate. Did Piper `learn her lesson` ? Maybe, maybe not, but the story had nothing to do with lessons-learned. It was a glimpse into a world that most wealthy, educated and non-drug addicted women don't experience. I quite enjoyed it, and found that I was surprised at some things (how helpful other inmates were, and how race within prison didn't seem to be a big deal in Piper's experience), and not so surprised at others (funding issues for programs in prison).
Overall it was an interesting "peep behind the curtains" of what goes on behind prison walls - from the point of view of a very non-traditional (and privileged) inmate.
The narration is good. There isn't any detailed sex or violence and only minimal swearing.
No. Don't think she has any other books.
The narrator was fine.
It is a show and I saw it. The first season was good, that was it.
I'm glad this was my free book. Not a very interesting story considering it's about an attractive white woman in a minimum security prison. She acted like it was a hardcore prison. Got tedious after a few chapters.
Was expecting a really great read since a tv show was based on it. Interesting, but not great.
Only if you've got lots of time.
The best part of the book is the enlightenment of what really goes on behind prison bars.
Maybe, the book was well written -- it just needed a juicier story. I found it hard to keep going at times.
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