by DB Michaels
How do I know the environment is stark and unforgiving? The answer is simple, really. I see it everyday when I show up to work. Yes, I work in a prison. As the primary care physician for inmates, just like Emma. Though the plot of my story is fictional, some of Emma’s first impressions of the prison were my first impressions. Like her, I was struck by how free flowing the inmates were. I learned quickly there were different levels of security for prisons. My prison, like Albatross, is medium-security with open dorms and perimeter fencing. Inmates walk among the free staff, distinguished only by their blue inmate uniforms.
Like Emma, during my first week, I had to attend orientation to learn the rules of working in prison, the biggest one of which is to never be over-familiar with an inmate. Even accepting a simple thank-you gift from a patient would be wrong. With such strict rules, one day I started wondering what it would be like to have to violate policy for the sake of one’s loved ones. How would it feel to have a family member as a patient? How hard would it be to lie to coworkers and pretend the patient was just another inmate? Thus, the seed of Song of the Blackbird was born.
I’ve learned working at the prison that though some inmates are “bad,” many are there due to a series of unfortunate circumstances. Today, nearly one-third of the US adult working population has a criminal record. With such a large number, I wanted to write about what it’s like to be in prison. My book explores some of the struggles and challenges prisoners and their families face, but I confess I am a romantic at heart and the core of my novel is still the love story between Emma and Maxim.
Many years ago, I fell in love with Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice and the BBC miniseries adaption of Elizabeth Gaskell’s North and South, so it was natural to combine elements of the above in my story. If you enjoy Orange is the New Black, then Song of the Blackbird would certainly be up your alley, too. I hope readers will discover from my book that though grim and dark, prison can be also a place of love, hope, and second chances.
About the Author
DB Michaels is a life-long reader who fell in love with the field of medicine during college. Double boarded in internal medicine and emergency medicine, she enjoys using her skills to help those in need. Working as a doctor in the prison system inspired her to write Song of the Blackbird, the first installment in her Albatross Prison Series. Though the book is entirely fictional, it illustrates the power of love, hope, and second chances.
DB’s first passion has always been books and she is happiest when she is absorbed in a great novel or writing. When she has time off, she likes to watch old movies, dally in the sun, and spend time with her family.
Connect with DB: Website | Facebook | Twitter
DB's Debut Romance: Song of the Blackbird
Desperate to reconnect with her half-brother, Emma Edwards takes her new medical training and secures a doctor’s job at the prison where he’s serving a sentence. But what she finds there is worse than she ever imagined…tough rules and even tougher men, gangs powered by drug money and corruption. Emma must find a way to keep her brother alive until he’s freed even if that means lying to the one man she should be able to trust…
Unless you find someone to share your pain…
Warden Maxim Chambers doesn’t believe a woman should be working in a penitentiary, especially one like Emma – a woman even a hardened man like him can’t get off his mind. He’s spent too many years building walls around his heart to let himself care about anyone. Yet when Emma is almost hurt in a prison assault, Maxim can’t deny his feelings for her. But what is the connection between Emma and the prisoner named Sam?
And accept your past.
When secrets are revealed, danger and death run through the prison. Only the truth can save Emma and Maxim…if it’s not too late.
Song of the Blackbird immerses you in a whole new world – a gritty, violent world where things you have always believed turn out not to be true. It is a compelling story of sorrow and loss, of hope and second chances, and most of all, of the power of love.
Available Here: Amazon