With all that we know of the suffering and injustice of incarceration, how unexpected it is to discover that Prison from the Inside Out is a book about love. Through Mecca’s extraordinary gift for human connection and Simone’s commitment to holding that gift at the center of his stories, we learn about the sustaining and redemptive power of family, profound friendship, tough but caring mentorship, and small acts of human kindness. Somehow Mecca manages to steer clear of trouble and to get close to people, whether he is hanging in the yard, working in the clothes house, or slaughtering hogs on work release. He shows us that you can find and provide compassion even in the harshness of prison.

How appropriate that this book is an imprint of HKF.


– Lucy Suchman – Professor of Anthropology, Lancaster University

Lydia Davis, winner of the Man Booker International Prize and MacArthur Fellow, noted author, says of Prison From The Inside Out:

“Forceful, vivid, and utterly captivating.  Every voice is fully alive, opinionated, smart, honest, articulate, and human – especially that of Mecca, the complex, thoughtful figure at the center.”

Thank you Ms. Davis for your acclaim and support of this inspiring and unique story!

Mr. James Leone is a US Marine and former supervisor at the Department of Public Safety’s Piedmont Correctional facility in Salisbury, NC. 

His review is: 

“You have a lot to say to me and anyone who picks up this book.  I’m honored to be in your story.”

Mr. Leone, we are honored you feel this way!  Thank you for your contribution, and I’m sure our readers will be enlightened by your role in the narrative.   The book is now available on Amazon, BarnesAndNoble, and directly from the Human Kindness Foundation.

Mr. Langston is the retired superintendent of Wake Correctional Facility.  He was officer of the year in 1999!  He has this to say about the book: 


Prison From the Inside Out

is Awesome!  Just like William, It’s Straight Up With No Chaser.

 More details about Mr. Langston and his interactions with “Mecca” are in the book!


NC Poet Laureate Jaki Shelton Greene has this to say about the book PRISON FROM THE INSIDE OUT: 

In his many years of incarceration, William ‘Mecca” Elmore realized that words are more powerful than bars. This is also a love story dedicated to resistance, resilience, hope, unconditional love, and humility. – Jaki Shelton Green, North Carolina Poet Laureate

Prison From The Inside Out offers a rare opportunity to see who we are as a nation through the eyes of our “justice” system; a view from deep inside the prison system that helps us understand what needs to happen at the individual and systemic levels for any possibility of change to arise.  Heartbreaking and heart-opening, Prison From The Inside Out reminded me of what hope feels like in the depths of despair. Its insights into the process of healing for formerly incarcerated men and women should make it required reading for those in
the justice system and for pertaining college classes.”

—Belvie Rooks, writer, educator, and human rights activist

  Belvie Rooks