• Orange Is the New Black

  • My Year in a Women's Prison
  • By: Piper Kerman
  • Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell
  • Length: 11 hrs and 11 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (445 ratings)

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Orange Is the New Black  By  cover art

Orange Is the New Black

By: Piper Kerman
Narrated by: Cassandra Campbell
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Publisher's summary

Now a Netflix Original Series • Number-One New York Times Best Seller

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 before. 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 people 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. 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, Kerman’s story 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.

“Fascinating.... The true subject of this unforgettable book is female bonding and the ties that even bars can’t unbind.” (People, four stars)

“I loved this book. It’s a story rich with humor, pathos, and redemption. What I did not expect from this memoir was the affection, compassion, and even reverence that Piper Kerman demonstrates for all the women she encountered while she was locked away in jail. I will never forget it.” (Elizabeth Gilbert, author of Eat, Pray, Love)

“This book is impossible to put down because [Kerman] could be you. Or your best friend. Or your daughter.” (Los Angeles Times)

©2010 Piper Kerman (P)2019 Random House Audio

Critic reviews

“Moving . . . transcends the memoir genre’s usual self-centeredness to explore how human beings can always surprise you.” (USA Today)

“It’s a compelling awakening, and a harrowing one - both for the reader and for Kerman.” (Newsweek.com)

"Kerman neither sentimentalizes nor lectures. She keeps the details of her despair to a minimum along with her discussion of the outrages of the penal system, concentrating instead on descriptions of her direct experiences, both harrowing and hilarious, and the personalities of the women who shared them with her." (Boston Globe)

Featured Article: Classic Literature from Black Writers, Performed by Black Narrators


Despite the many great works of literature by great Black writers, Black voices have had a hard time entering "the canon." Worse, there have been times when Black words were miscast and read by narrators who didn't connect with the spirit of the authors. To help rectify this, we offer our careful selection of classics by Black authors performed by gifted Black actors that truly deserve to be recognized, celebrated, and savored.