ORANGE IS THE NEW BLACK

My Year in a Women's Prison

Piper Kerman

With a career, a boyfriend, and a loving family, Piper Kerman barely

resembles the reckless young woman who delivered a suitcase of drug

money ten years ago. But that past has caught up with her. Convicted and

sentenced to fifteen 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,

more …

With a career, a boyfriend, and a loving family, Piper Kerman barely

resembles the reckless young woman who delivered a suitcase of drug

money ten years ago. But that past has caught up with her. Convicted and

sentenced to fifteen 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, 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.

less …
  • Spiegel & Grau
  • Paperback
  • March 2011
  • 352 Pages
  • 9780385523394

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About Piper Kerman

Piper Kerman is vice president of a Washington, D.C.—based

communications firm that works with foundations and nonprofits. A

graduate of Smith College, she lives in Brooklyn.

Praise

“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. This book

is not just a tale of prisons, drugs, crime, or justice; it is, simply

put, a beautifully told story about how incredible women can be, and I

will never forget it.”—Elizabeth Gilbert, New York Times bestselling 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

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