Literary Quote of the Month

“For poems are not, as people think, simply emotions (one has emotions early enough)—they are experiences,” … Rilke, The Notebooks of Malte Laurids Brigge.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Memoir Monday... Orange Is The New Black by Piper Kerman

Graduated from Smith College... Found Herself in Exotic Places...
Landed in Federal Prison!?

Orange Is The New Black
A Memoir by Piper Kerman

From the Publisher... "When Piper Kerman was sent to prison for a ten-year-old crime, she barely resembled the reckless young woman she’d been when, shortly after graduating Smith College, she’d committed the misdeeds that would eventually catch up with her. Happily ensconced in a New York City apartment, with a promising career and an attentive boyfriend, she was suddenly forced to reckon with the consequences of her very brief, very careless dalliance in the world of drug trafficking.

Kerman spent thirteen months in prison, eleven of them at the infamous federal correctional facility in Danbury, Connecticut, where she met a surprising and varied community of women living under exceptional circumstances. In Orange Is the New Black, Kerman tells the story of those long months locked up in a place with its own codes of behavior and arbitrary hierarchies, where a practical joke is as common as an unprovoked fight, and where the uneasy relationship between prisoner and jailer is constantly and unpredictably recalibrated.

Revealing, moving, and enraging, Orange Is the New Black offers a unique perspective on the criminal justice system, the reasons we send so many people to prison, and what happens to them when they’re there."

How does an intelligent young lady who graduated from Smith College end up in a federal prison in Danbury, Connecticut? By laundering money for an African drug lord of course. What?! Yes, Piper Kerman reveals her brief life of crime at the beginning of the book, and how she came to her senses before she thought it was too late, started a "new" life, (or got back her old one), but found out how certain things have a funny way of catching up to you...

Lot's of buzz about Orange Is The New Black by Piper Kerman, which was published by Random House earlier this month, and which is on my coffee table right now with a bookmark solidly placed 1/3 of the way through. Her story is fascinating, the writing is good (I had to pull myself away for coffee this morning) and I will have my full review later in the week! For now, you can read an excerpt of the book that is being called "A compelling, often hilarious, and unfailingly compassionate portrait of life inside a women’s prison" at Marie Claire Magazine. And that connection I mentioned in my Sunday Salon post? Well, I happen to have grown up in the town where Piper Kerman was "sent away" to...

Happy Reading! Suzanne...

2 comments:

Jess said...

I read the article she wrote for Marie Claire about how she ended up in prison. It was an intense and thought provoking article. I need to put this on the TBR list. Thanks for the heads up.

Jess

Shooting Stars Mag said...

thanks for your brief thoughts. I saw this around recently and thought it looked good!

-Lauren

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