The unflinching true account of a teenage girl's descent into society's underbelly -- and her mother's desperate and ultimately successful attempts to bring her back.
How does an honor student at one of Los Angeles's finest prep schools -- a bright, beautiful girl from a loving home -- trade school uniforms and afternoons at the beach for shooting up in the back of a van in rural Indiana? How does her devoted mother emerge from the shock of finding that her daughter has not only disappeared but had been living a secret life for more than a year?
Mother and daughter tell their parallel stories in mesmerizing first-person accounts. Claire Fontaine's story is a parent's worst nightmare, a cautionary tale chronicling her daughter Mia's drug-fueled manipulation of everyone around her as she sought refuge in the seedy underworld of criminals and heroin addicts, the painful childhood secrets that led up to it, and the healing that followed. Her search for Mia was brutal for both mother and daughter, a dizzying series of dead ends, incredible coincidences and, at times, miracles. Ultimately, Mia was forced into harsh-but-loving boot camp schools on two continents while Claire entered a painful but life-changing program of her own. Mia's story includes the jarring culture shock of the extreme and controversial behavior modification school she was in for nearly two years, which helped her overcome depression and self-hatred to emerge a powerful young woman with self-esteem and courage.
An unforgettable story of love and transformation, Come Back is a heart-wrenching and humorous portrayal of the primal bond between mother and daughter that will resonate with women everywhere.
A nightmarish saga of a teenage runaway in L.A. ends triumphantly thanks to love and support from her screenwriter mom and stepdad. At 15, Mia gets involved in a dangerous drug and Wicca scene, stunning her successful, controlling mother, Claire, and stepfather, Paul. But the signs were in place earlier, after Mia's history of being sexually abused by her biological father, a violent, vindictive drug user whom Claire left with difficulty. Sent to Indiana to live with Claire's sister, Mia starts using cocaine heavily and even gets arrested. When the destructive behavior (including self-mutilation) accelerates, Claire and Paul send Mia to the unlikely Morava Academy, in the Czech Republic, a kind of Spartan military institution where 50 teens are rigorously monitored and reprogrammed. Meanwhile, back in L.A., the parents undergo an intensive group therapy called Discovery to learn to shed guilt for their daughter's behavior, and also forgive her. Oddly, Morava is soon shut down after allegations of staff abuse, but Mia goes through a brilliant turnaround at Spring Creek Lodge in Montana. Mia's desperate diary entries appear between Claire's lively, angry, sarcastic narrative, allowing mother and daughter to maintain a heart-wrenching, honest dialogue.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Heart wrenching and uplifting
This book was such a profound story of the love between a mother and daughter. It's about abus, drugs, and recovery. I'm so enlightened by this story of healing and thankful that this mother daughter team each shared their story within the same pages with such poignancy. Thank you, a must read.
This true story documents the account of a mother's determination to save her daughter from self destruction and life on the streets. Unlike many books on this subject, this narrative focuses on the mother - her hard choices, determination, self criticism and most of all belief in her daughter. Her journey extends to an overseas boarding school, having to go without food or shelter in a foreign country for two days and risking her own career and finances to restore her daughter to the fully functioning young woman she knew she could become. This biography also gives the viewpoint of her teenage daughter who lived the frightening and confusing life of a girl trying to recover from sexual abuse. This book will especially appeal to any parent faced with the hard choice of allowing their child to self destruct, or entrusting their wellbeing to people almost unseen. This book is also highly recommended to therapists, educators and drug counselors and anyone involved in residential care of youth.
I could not put this book down. It is so well written. I'm so grateful to both Clair and Mia for sharing their journey with others. As an abused child myself, you fell so along, un-worthy, un-wanted, un-lovable. It also helped me to see as bad as my abuse, the verbal, mental, physical and sexual abuse, I was not alone. The same or worse was happening to another little girl or little boy. My heart breaks and I so wish I could tell each of them we are beautiful, special little one. Even though grown now, the hurt of those years held on to me until I was around 50. I thank God for always being there when I felt I could live no longer and for the past 4 years of sweet victory over my abuse and forgiving give me the power to forgive the one who abused me. I know know peace and it is so sweet. Thanks again for sharing and helping others to heal.