Overview (No Spoilers): A similar narrative as Wild, Orange is the New Black is the story of a woman’s self-reflection and coming-to-terms with mistakes from her past that have recently come to light, bringing with consequences that disrupts her present day life. As with Cheryl Strayed’s character, I had a difficult time deeply connecting with Piper Kerman’s personality and subsequently the her story. Overall, Kerman’s experience yielded interesting life lessons and offered unique insight into a women’s prison, a topic seldom discussed or addressed in popular literature/media.
Additional Insight (May Contain Spoilers): As an avid fan of Netflix Original Orange is the New Black (ONB), the book has been on my must read list for quite some time. In hindsight, I almost feel ashamed at the naivety of my expectations for the book, based on the TV show. I found myself expecting Kerman’s first hand experience in prison to mirror that of the wild, promiscuous plot exploited by the show. Alternatively the anecdotes contained in the book were mild and meek compared to the aforementioned antics portrayed on the show. Obviously, the discrepancy falls back on the age-old concept of ‘sex sells.’ One of the most apparent examples of the liberties taken by the show to increase the sex appeal is the rekindling of Piper and Alex/Nora’s relationship, which is nonexistent in the book. Their only interaction occurs toward the end of the book, in which they do end up briefly in the same location, however they proceed to mostly ignore each other. Moreover, the manipulation of the Kerman’s experience does result is a highly entertaining show with its roots lying on the narrative of a woman’s self reflection upon the emergence of a long forgotten skeleton from her past, which wreck havoc on her picture perfect presence.