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Little Girl Gone Paperback – January 31, 2012

3.9 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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The Nest by Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney
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A warm, funny and acutely perceptive debut novel about four adult siblings and the fate of their shared inheritance. Learn more | See author page
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Editorial Reviews


"Campbell's powerful novel explores the depth of depravity cloaked as charity and the ability to take a leap of faith and change the direction of one's life. This compelling story will stay with you long after the book is finished."―Monsters and Critics on Little Girl Gone

"Campbell writes with deceptive simplicity all the more impressive for the psychological currents simmering below the surface of a barren terrain. Lives made vulnerable by accommodation to loneliness are caught in the web of one man's madness, the rugged landscape a bleak canvas for all manner of bad decisions. But fate intervenes on behalf of Brock's prisoners, a life-long lie is revealed, a boy's fantastical tale proved true, and the frayed connections between a mother and daughter mended in a novel that celebrates the power of friendship and the freedom to make one's own choices."―www.curledup.com

"Campbell's latest has full-blown appeal for teen readers, echoing stories of abduction in the news (a là Jaycee Dugard, and her memoir A Stolen Life) or popular fiction (think of Emma Donoghue's Alex Award-winning Room)."―--- Library Journal

"Little Girl Gone peers insightfully into the lives of people easily written off as monsters. With an economy of style, vivid details, and grace of expression, Drusilla Campbell has written a novel well worth staying up late to keep reading."―Laurel Corona, author of PENELOPE'S DAUGHTER and FINDING EMILIE

"When is the last time you cheered out loud for a character in a novel? That's what I did as I read Drusilla Campbell's Little Girl Gone. The complex relationships between Campbell's richly drawn characters took me on a psychological roller coaster that tested my expectations, my values, and my heart. This story of tension and triumph is a perfect bookclub selection. Don't miss it!"―Diane Chamberlain, bestselling author of The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes

"Nobody gets to the marrow of human flaws and frailties better than Drusilla Campbell. In LITTLE GIRL GONE you are immersed in the lives of people you think you'll never meet and come to care deeply about what happens to each of them. This is a compelling story that won't leave you alone even after you've turned the last page."―Judy Reeves, Author of A WRITER'S BOOK OF DAYS

"An unflinching portrayal of life in emotional and physical captivity, "Little Girl Gone" is also a disturbing peek at the underbelly of society. The novel examines what it means to be a savior, in reality and delusion.... Campbell has a powerfully understated voice and resists the easy path of sensationalizing the story with prurient details simply to shock. Instead she provides authentic drama rich with complex psychological composition. The result is a novel that is hard to read, but even harder to put down."―San Diego Union Tribune

"Drusilla Campbell is a long time writer with several books in print. She is very talented in winding stories with strong women finding their voices. She proves that she knows what she is doing with Little Girl Gone."―ChaptersandChats.com

"Drusilla Campbell uses lyrical descriptions of the desert setting to make each character's loneliness more atmospheric."―Newark Star Ledger

"Campbell beautifully captures the raw and stark reality of Madora's life while building tension and suspense towards a climactic ending. Little Girl Gone is a fantastic exploration into domestic violence and the power of courage in the face of tragedy."BookFinds

"Resist the urge to turn the page to find out what happens next. Linger, instead, to savor the skillfully crafted writing."―Judy Reeves, author of Writing Alone, Writing Together on WILDWOOD

"The pull of family and career, the limits of friendship and the demands of love all come to vivid life in Wildwood."Susan Vreeland, author of Girl in Hyacinth Blue on WILDWOOD

"The story will make you ache for these two women who are bound inextricably and irrevocably by their shared past."―Bestselling author T. Greenwood on THE GOOD SISTER

"With unflinching honesty, Drusilla Campbell explores the emotional complexities between sisters and mothers, and just how far we will go to hurt and help each other. Poignant and intense."―Ellen Newmark, author of The Book of Unholy Mischief on THE GOOD SISTER

"Campbell burns through Simone's struggles and those of Roxanne in haunting, graphic detail. Should be on everyone's book club list."―Publisher's Weekly on THE GOOD SISTER

"Strong and touching." -PublishersWeeklyPublishers Weekly

About the Author

Drusilla Campbell is the author of the critically acclaimed novels: Wildwood, The Edge of Sky, Blood Orange, and The Good Sister. Before she started school she had crossed the Pacific Ocean three times. In her twenties she lived in Europe and Central America. Today she's happy to stay at home in San Diego with her husband, the attorney and poet Art Campbell, two rescued dogs, and three horses.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; First Edition edition (January 31, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0446535796
  • ISBN-13: 978-0446535793
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 1 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.9 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,016,578 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Drusilla Campbell lives in San Diego with her husband, the lawyer-poet-professor, Art Campbell, two rescued dogs and four horses. She was born in Melbourne, Australia and came to California when she was six years old. Before that she criss-crossed the United States by train and car with her brave and resourceful mother and mostly adorable baby brother. She had sailed the Pacific Ocean three times before starting first grade and knew how to run down a pitching outside deck and come to a sliding, slamming stop against a bulkhead, laughing the whole time. She grew up in the Santa Clara Valley in the halcyon days before the dot com magnates discovered it, attended San Jose State University, and then started traveling again. She taught in Melbourne, London and at a remote jungle outpost in Panama before settling down and marrying. While living in Washington, DC she got a Masters Degree in Broadcast Journalism from the American University and went to work for NPR's major DC affiliate, WAMU-fm. She has two sons, Rocky and Matt, and three grandchildren who are smarter, more intelligent and entertaining than anyone elses. The dogs, the horses, the family and friends and writing books keep her happily in one place.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
When Emma Donoghue's ROOM was published in late 2010, it garnered a lot of attention. Simultaneously fascinating and shocking its audience with its eerie depiction of a mother and son held captive for seven years in an 11-foot by 11-foot soundproofed shed, the book is told from the young boy's uniquely naïve point of view. After all, he was born in the enclosure and had never set foot outside. How would he know the world was any different from the reality in front of his face? The book was shortlisted for both the Man Booker Prize and the Orange Prize, and made just about every end-of-the-year "Best Of" list, including that of the New York Times, the Washington Post and the New Yorker. Clearly, readers were curious about what it felt like to be kidnapped by a crazy pervert on the run from the law --- and what it meant to accept that as home.

THE GOOD SISTER author Drusilla Campbell's latest novel tells a similar story, but from a nuanced perspective --- that of the creepy kidnapper's accomplice. As you might expect from a book with this premise, 17-year-old Madora is just as clueless and inexperienced as Jack --- the boy in ROOM --- but in a more frightening sort of way. Unlike the mother in ROOM, Madora actually looks up to her jailer and thinks he's a good man.

At 12 years old, Madora had fallen with the wrong crowd. After her father committed suicide five years earlier, she started to slack off. She partied more. She did drugs. She mouthed off to her mother whom she believed was at fault for not keeping the family together and happy. When an older, handsome-looking man named Willis came up to her at a friend's party and took an interest in her, she pounced on the opportunity. It's as if she'd been rescued from her life the moment he stepped into it.
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Format: Paperback
Campbell has written a deceptively simple novel, a seventeen-year-old Yuma, Arizona, girl scarred by the suicide of her father defining herself through rebellion, soon floundering in the chaos of grief and emotional immaturity. A frightening experience with wild parties and drugs delivers Medora to the
waiting arms of a marine, Willis Brock, a young man psychologically warped by his own family losses on a mission to save foolish girls from their dangerous impulses. Five years later, Medora lives on a remote plot of land thirty miles from San Diego, California, virtually in thrall to Willis, convinced that his happiness lies in her hands, unable to challenge his directives or withstand his rages, even when he brings home a pregnant teen,locks his captive in an abandoned truck trailer behind the house and assigns Medora as the girl's de facto jailer. The logic of her relationship undermined by enforced isolation, the paucity of physical comforts and the weight of Willis' restrictions, discontent bubbles to the surface with the birth of the captive's child.

Ironically, synchronicity and Medora's pit bull puppy, Foo, thrust newly-orphaned Django Jones into Medora's life. Rural Arroyo is a far cry from the Hollywood estate of his childhood, but when twelve-year-old Django stumbles across Medora and Foo near their shack, curiosity and loneliness spark a friendship and the wheels of fate begin to turn, undermining Brock's control over his prisoner. In a landscape inhabited by characters whose interior lives are defined by isolation and uncertainty reflected in their physical environment, Campbell illustrates the vulnerability of Medora, Django and Robin, Django's aunt and court-appointed guardian.
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Format: Paperback
Medora Welles makes a number of life altering decisions one worse than the last. She finds herself at the age of 17 going with a man she thought was her salvation. Willis came to her in the darkest moment of her life and provided a light to freedom.

What Medora viewed as freedom was anything less than imprisonment but she never saw it as anything but a man loving her too much. Even when another woman is forced to live as a prisoner Medora still believes everything Willis tells her. Willis has dreams for them, goals of lofty aspirations, and life beyond the isolated dump they are presently living in. Willis repeatedly tells Medora he is saving her and working to save the woman, he currently holds prisoner.

Through the love of a dog and the curiosity of a 12 year-old boy Medora starts to question her life and the choices she has made. She now sees that beyond not being her guardian angel Willis may in fact be the exact opposite. How do you escape from the hell that is your life if you have nowhere to go and feel there is no one who cares about you? For Medora she may have someone that is missing her, and there is someone who wants to help her escape. The question going through her mind is after all these years does she even remember her name.

This book is such a compelling read that you have to keep reading to see how everything turns out. The story is one that has you looking around at every stranger wondering if there is some secret lurking in that person's life.
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