Saturday, December 1, 2018

Sending Books

There have been some interest in sending books to Farrah while she is at Eyman. There are restrictions, but the process is not difficult. As long as the correct shipping address is used, only a few details will differ from ordering yourself a book.

Individuals cannot send books directly. All books must be ordered and shipped from a recognized publisher, distributor, or authorized retailer. Unfortunately, no third party vendors are allowed.  The books must be shipped directly from the company they are ordered from. Amazon Marketplace, Barnes & Noble, and e-Bay are all considered third party vendors. Amazon has reportedly been very inconsistent, sometimes orders from Amazon are accepted – but only if the order was shipped directly from Amazon, and even then there is no guarantee. Consider Amazon  a last resort.

Walmart is listed by AZ DOC as an example of an authorized retailer, and Farrah has received books shipped from Walmart. If a book is not available from Walmart, or you do not wish to do business with Walmart, you can go to most major publishers and order the book through them. Farrah has received books ordered directly from the publisher.

Selecting a book

All books are reviewed by facility officials before they are available for pickup. The purchaser's name, address, and the book title are recorded. Books send without that information are rejected automatically. For the most part, just use some common sense – most mainstream novels are fine. If you are a little uncomfortable with AZ DOC knowing you sent a particular book, think twice before sending it. A more complete list of restrictions will be included in the last section.

When selecting a book, you need to check several things before placing an order. The book must be either soft-cover or paperback. No hard-cover books are allowed. The book must be new, not used. While the regulations allow for used books under some circumstances, the chances of a used book getting through are very slim.

While it may be a nice gesture, do not include a bookmark with the order. Bookmarks are not allowed and will be removed from the package and discarded.

Make sure the book is coming directly from the business you are ordering from. Double check, it is important.

Please send one book at a time. Farrah is not allowed to have more than 10 books at once, and several of her books are reference books that she wants to hold on to. Sending one book at a time will give her a chance to finish one book before the next one arrives. She is a fast reader, and the books you want to send may be small, but you are not the only person sending her books.

Finally, if the book is rejected, it may not be returned to the sender and you may not be refunded. Please, do not spend more than you would be willing to just lose.

Shipping the book

AZ DOC will not accept books sent through a private shipping company. Do not select any method other than the US Post Office. The shipping address for Eyman is a PO Box, so this should not be a problem.  If the site does not specify a shipper, you can check with customer service before ordering. Special instructions may be required with the order. Please check. Dover publishers, as an example, requires the order comment section have the inmates name, id, address and a statement requesting the book be shipped via US MAIL.

If mail is sent from overseas, make sure it will be handled by the US Post Office when it reaches this country.

The order must include a receipt in the package with the book. That receipt must include the title of the book, the name of the company it was purchased from, the name of the purchaser and the billing address. Major retailers, including Walmart, include an acceptable receipt.  If using a smaller retailer or publisher, you may want to check with customer service before placing your first order.

The address the book is shipped to is very important. The address must include Farrah’s legal name, her DOC id number, and the unit she is housed in. The order of the unit name, and the PO. Box is not critical. The name of the facility is optional.

Eyman, Meadows unit
PO. Box 3300


PO. Box 3300
Eyman, Meadows unit

have both worked in the past. The following is an example of the shipping address I have used to send books from Walmart. It should be easy to convert this layout into the forms used by other businesses.

If you have met the requires laid out so far, Farrah should eventually get your book. Please remember that each book must be inspected and reviewed before it is available for Farrah to pick up. The review process will take some time. Delays of a week or more are not uncommon.

If your book is rejected, Farrah will only get a short form telling her a book was received and rejected. She will not know what book was rejected, and she will not know why the book was rejected.

Final Notes and Recommendations

Farrah will not be told who sent the book. She is only told that a particular book has been approved and is available for her to pick up. So, if you send her a book, please send her a letter or card letting her know what you ordered. The letter or card does not need to be long, and she loves hearing from people – and if you tell her what you ordered, she can get word back to you that the book arrived.

Farrah has been shipped the following books recently,
Armada by Ernest Cline
Ready Player One by Ernest Cline
Robopocalypse by Daniel Wilson
Autonomous by Annalee Newitz
Mathematics for Nonmathematicians by Morris Kline
along with an art book for drawing furries, there are several and the specific title is not known.

The following books will be sent in the near future,
Robogenesis by Daniel Wilson
Artemis by Andy Weir

Farrah tends to prefer hard science fiction, not fantasy or even science fantasy. She does not care for military science fiction either. She has also requested books based on game franchisees like DOOM or Elite: Dangerous. A formal list has not arrived yet. If you would like any specific recommendations, all you need to do is ask Farrah. Include a few suggestions, if you have any. She loves getting mail and will reply when she gets a chance.

Content Restrictions

The full details are available in AZ DOC department orders 909 and 914. Religious materials are covered by a separate set of regulations, which will not be included here. Religious books are available in the prison library, you do not need to send them.

All items are reviewed for content, and may not include the following:
  1. Material that describes or depicts anything that could aid or incite any resistance
  2. Instructions for sending or receiving prison contraband
  3. Any depiction or description of street gangs, hate groups, terrorist organizations, et.
  4. Pictures or instructions regarding the function of locks or security devices
  5. Instructions or promotion of drug paraphernalia, or the manufacture of drugs or alcohol
  6. Content promoting racism, religious oppression, or racial superiority
  7. Martial arts or self-defense training manuals
  8. Pictures, descriptions or instructions for the sale, manufacture, concealment or construction of any weaponry. Simple pictures or broad descriptions of a weapon would not be grounds for rejection. Describing how a zip gun was put together, even in fiction, would be rejected.
  9. Detailed descriptions of computers, electronics or communication systems. Neuromancer by William Gibson would be perfectly fine, but Hackers by Steven Levy would probably be rejected
  10. Anything involving ciphers, codes or cryptography
  11. Anything involving intelligence gathering, or investigative techniques. Works of fiction are fine, but nothing approaching actual police or military procedures. Sending anything describing or instructing in the use of military procedures could be considered a violation of the law
  12. Anything promoting violence
  13. Anything sexually explicit
  14. Instructions on the sale, manufacture, concealment or construction of tools
  15. Any content that could cause a health hazard, fire hazard, or disruption facility operations

All items are reviewed according to these regulations, but the reviewers are allowed flexibility. Use your common sense. Mainstream mystery novels, science fiction, or spy novels like Jack Reacher or Jason Bourne, are fine.

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