Come Back

by Claire Fontaine

Paperback, 2007




HarpPeren (2007), 311 pages


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.… (more)

User reviews

LibraryThing member ljs66
I couldn't put this book down, even though I knew the ending from the jacket. This book was so inspirational. I was so amazed at what each of these women were able to endure. Their strength amazed me.

I really enjoyed the two very different voices of both the mother and daughter. It really helped the reader understand and accept how a daughter could find herself on a path to destruction and how the mother is able, through self discovery and pure love to lead her back.… (more)
LibraryThing member readaholic12
A must read - amazing true story of a mother's and daughter's love as they fight through teen drug addiction.
LibraryThing member cierramarinko
Comeback is a brilliant true story about a mother and her daughters journey though life, and how the mother fights to get her back to reality. Comeback is an amazing novel, the book will open your eyes to another life that almost everyone is oblivious to.
LibraryThing member Mychiefthemama
Astounding... painful to read but remarkable nonetheless.
LibraryThing member ChelsWhoElse
Come Back was extraordinarly moving! It will convince you to never feel sorry for yourself again. When a teenage girl ends up riding the waves of society's underbelly, her mother's love tries to bring her back to shore. I particularly reccomend this book for teenagers who think they have a hard life, for this will certainly change their outlook on life.… (more)
LibraryThing member lalalibrarian
I think I saw a lifetime movie that was sort of like this.
LibraryThing member JessicaStalker
This is a gripping story of a daughter with a serious drug addiction and her mother's journey to end it. The writing is a bit repetitive at times but mostly its due to the nature of her relapses. Nevertheless, the story is just plain heartbreaking and the book is hard to put down.
LibraryThing member E.J
You get to read from the mother and daughter's perspective of events happening at the same time, side by side. I was hooked from the first page.
LibraryThing member justablondemoment
Very slow in parts of the book. So much so that I almost put it down. I really never really felt all that connected to the characters. Other parts of the book had my full attention. So this one was just a okay book.
LibraryThing member Nina_N
Journeys, life just doesn’t exist without taking one . . .

This was another well-written memoir. I just love when I can pick up a story and travel the footprints of one’s' personal journey. Truly, this was that one!
The authors have shown great skill in their structure of this book, with no hole barred. Depicting great scenes and characterizations (with those show me moments) and from the stance of an author. And a reader couldn’t reach for more, than what this book presents in exposing one’s personal journey.

No doubt, this family knows the challenges one may endure when our children tend to sway away, from a loving and caring upbringing. My heart went out to the parents through many of their emotional triumphs. There’s nothing like a mother’s love to pull it all together. Okay, dad, you play a vital role, as well. And so it was . . . a gratifying ending. To both the authors that wrote this story, kudos to you!

Gee, it surprised me that no one had rated this book, before now. It was such an interesting and fantastic read.
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LibraryThing member akblanchard
Claire and Mia Fontaine's dual memoir Comeback is about teenage daughter Mia's brush with street life and drug addiction, and mother Claire's efforts to save her. Claire has Mia kidnapped and sends her to an unorthodox rehab facility in the Czech Republic, where an intensely structured, almost cult like program helps Mia deal with her long-buried issues, including her sexual abuse at the hands of her biological father. Claire, too, undergoes transformation as she attends therapeutic workshops and examines her own role in bringing about Mia's rebellious behavior. By the end, the memoir gets bogged down in therapy-speak, but, all in all, this is a moving look at the lengths a mother will go to in order to bring her daughter back from the brink of self-destruction.

Shortly before I finished this book and wrote the paragraph above, I did a bit of research into the Czech program Mia was in. Turns out it was part of the WWASP family of therapeutic "boarding schools", most of which were shut down in the 1990s and early 2000s due to allegations of child torture and abuse. The memoir's timeline is vague, but Wikipedia states that the Mia's program, "Morava", opened and was shut down in 1998. Nonetheless, Claire and Mia seem happy with the program's results. Now that I know about the controversies surrounding the program, Mia and Claire's story seems more like a defense of the WWASP "tough love" approach than anything else. Read with caution.
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LibraryThing member drea3132
Hell and back is right! This girl was nuts! Her mom, too! Sending her daughter oversea's to a rehab slash boarding school is not what normal parents do..but hey maybe they should. I never knew places like that exsisted. Quite frankly, it scared me. They should send some people from Hollywood to that school..oh, you can't, it got raided for complaint's of abuse and neglect.
The story is real. That's what is so great about it. Mia's problems don't just go away with a cup of hot-chocolate. It was nice to see that even the whole family went to therapy and counseling. I was glad that there wasn't a fairy tale ending like most books...this book was mostly the hard part that other books lack. Pretty good read.
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LibraryThing member TFS93
An amazing story of a mother and daughter who fought their way back to each other. It sickens me that a father could treat his daughter this way and get away with it, yet I know it happens everyday. This is something that needs to be fixed in our society. Mia and Claire are wonderful people and have come out on top of the situation. This one will make you think and probably make you want to hug your mother.… (more)


Original language


Physical description

311 p.; 6 inches


0060859717 / 9780060859718
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