PRISON NOIR - Akashic Press
I SAW AN ANGEL - Sin Soracco

Edited by Joyce Carol Oates, this is a collection of convict and ex-convict writing.

From Vikki Law's review in New Clear Vision:

"Set in the California state women's prison where she served time during the 1970s, Sin Soracco's "I Saw an Angel" depicts a very different form of prison relationship. The story follows Frankie as she moves through prison just days before her release. What happens is mundane - she learns that another woman, Rodeo, has been diagnosed, but before she can find out more, the guard interrupts their conversation, ordering "Move it, ladeez. Move it along here." She passes a woman in the kitchen being searched by guards for some missing item. "A block of cheese? A missing spoon? The day was built on broken trivialities." Soracco's story shows the monotony of prison life, one that Frankie is soon to leave behind. But in the humdrum, Soracco also shows the relationships the women have built to support each other. When a guard cruelly and gleefully informs Rodeo's concerned friend that Rodeo will die, Frankie comforts the woman in her own way- not with platitudes and comforting words, but with a story filled with bluster about smuggling drugs into prison. Later, as Frankie faces off against the same guard, another woman comes to her rescue. None of the actions are bold and splashy, but Soracco imparts the sense of community they've formed and the ways that they keep each other out of harm's way. It's a very different type of human interaction than what Stephens portrays." - See complete review at: New Clear Vision

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