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Comment: exlibrary hardcover book in mylar jacket with light wear, shows some light reader wear throughout ,all the usual library marks and stamps
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Runaway Girl: Escaping Life on the Streets, One Helping Hand at a Time Hardcover – July 5, 2012


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Runaway Girl: Escaping Life on the Streets, One Helping Hand at a Time + Girls Like Us: Fighting for a World Where Girls Are Not for Sale: A Memoir + Renting Lacy: A Story Of America's Prostituted Children (A Call to Action)
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Viking Adult (July 5, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0670023728
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670023721
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #130,726 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

Praise for Runaway Girl:
 
“This devastatingly honest memoir is not for the fainthearted . . . Kafka famously wrote, ‘A book must be the ax for the frozen sea within us.’ Runaway Girl just might become such a book. [Phelps] gives the reader valuable insight into a problem that is larger than most people realize.”
San Francisco Chronicle
 
“Phelps is a success . . . [a] remarkable story.”
—NPR

“Carissa Phelps’s story illustrates the power each of us has to speak the words that are the difference between life and death, freedom and imprisonment, success and failure. Carissa is brilliant. She’s changing our world for the better, not despite what she’s been through, but specifically because of it.”
—Rhonda Sciortino, radio host of Crack the Code  and author of Succeed Because of What You’ve Been Through

“Riveting . . . A genuinely important book that casts the problem of sex trafficking in America into stunning, heartbreaking relief.”
Kirkus Reviews

Runaway Girl may break your heart but I promise it will ultimately awe and inspire you. No child should have to endure what Carissa did, but thousands do. Her story is a testimony to the resilience of these children and the difference a caring individual can make in their lives. If you have any doubts whether one person can make a difference in the life of a traumatized, ‘delinquent,’ young person, Runaway Girl should put them to rest.”
—Dr. Howard Zehr, professor of restorative justice, Eastern Mennonite University’s Center for Justice and Peacebuilding, and author of What Will Happen to Me?
 
“Runaway Girl demonstrates a great amount of insight and maturity. Crisp writing and perfectly chosen events highlight the story of what happens to the majority of twelve-year-olds on the street.”
School Library Journal, selected as a Best Adult Books for Teens of the Year
 
“As a captivating account of the triumph of a battered heart, Runaway Girl is truly a modern profile in courage, a spiritual odyssey, and a riveting read. Any child who experienced the trauma that Carissa Phelps so poignantly portrays will gain comfort, encouragement, and hope in reading this book.”
—Paul Freese, Public Counsel Law Center
 
“A brave memoir.”
—Publishers Weekly
 
“What happens to the thousands of kids every year in the United States who are forced to leave home? Many of them are find themselves in the same situation Carissa Phelps did: fallen between the cracks in foster care and forced by a vicious exploiter to walk the streets. With courage, insight, and unflinching honesty, Carissa reveals the truth about her life as a runaway, bringing to light the many issues facing homeless youth while providing them with a beacon of hope to follow. I want everyone who cares about our country’s young people to read this book.”
—Janice Erlbaum, author of Girlbomb
 
“This book is provocative in the best sense of the word: it incites readers to help. . . . Runaway Girl is an effective, socially aware book that offers unique insight into one woman’s personal experiences with trauma and recovery and her journey to find herself in a difficult, frightening, and ultimately supportive world.”  
—Katie Shaeffer, BookshelfBombshells.com

“With not a trace of victimhood or unplaced drama, this is a terrific addition to all collections."
—Amy Cheney, Alameda County Library, Juvenile Hall, CA
 
Runaway Girl should be required reading for anyone with kids, especially girls, in their lives.”
—Jesika Long, Jesikalong.Tumblr.com
 
Runaway Girl is both a cautionary tale about the realities of sex-trafficking in the U.S. and an inspirational story of the change that is possible with the help of others. A very important read for both parents and teenagers.”
—Vera Pereskokova, SheKnows.com

About the Author

An attorney, motivational speaker, and youth advocate, Carissa Phelps works as part of a global collective to help local and international survivors of sex trafficking rebuild their lives. Her life story was the subject of the award-winning documentary "Carissa." She lives in San Luis Obispo, California.

Larkin Warren’s essays and articles have appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Glamour, More, and Good Housekeeping. Among her recent book collaborations are Mary Forsberg Weiland’s Fall to Pieces and Elyn R. Saks’s bestselling The Center Cannot Hold.


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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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I heartily recommend this book for everyone to read.
Steve Hassan
I hope it moves others to get involved and make a difference in the life of a child in need so we can have many more stories as powerful as the life of Carissa Phelps!
KJ
Knowing Carissa personally, I just had to get this book.
herrerr

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By LovetoRead on July 5, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
One word, Wow! I just blew through this book, truly could not put it down. Carissa Phelps has an incredible story to tell, gut-wrenching, horrifying, and ultimately motivating. I was brought to tears many times while reading this book, not just during the frantic street scenes, but even more when Carissa starts recounting the many helping hands that helped to pull her out of the victimization that she was experiencing. As a mother myself, with a young daughter, Carissa's experiences that she had as a young girl, simply looking for someone to love her, to take care of her, spoke volumes to me. It has motivated me even more to want to be there for her. Thank you Carissa for sharing your story and thank you for all that you are doing now to help young women out of the dead-end street life.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By KJ on July 9, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
What an amazing story! Carissa speaks with such raw honesty as she lets you into her world of neglect, lonliness, abuse, and eventually triumph. Her story is another example of the many youth that fall through the cracks of the system. But it's also a story of what an impact one person, "one helping hand at a time" can make in the lives of these youth. The people that stuck with her and continued to believe in her through even the thoughest of times helped Carissa eventually become one of the most motivating and inspiring modern day survivor, advocate, and thriver! She truly is doing God's work and I know her story will inspire and encourage many, many people! I hope it moves others to get involved and make a difference in the life of a child in need so we can have many more stories as powerful as the life of Carissa Phelps!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By computane on July 6, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read this book cover-to-cover in one sitting the moment it was e-delivered to my computer. It is so emotionally gripping - I wanted to hug Carissa, do the opposite to her offenders, give thanks to the Spirit, and get up and do something for youth instantly, all within reading a few sentences - and on nearly every page! It's painful, yet triumphant - a deeply God-centric, all-to-familiar story for today's social workers like me that's powerfully put to the page by a survivor who continues her journey by assisting others who are or were in her past shoes as an exploited child.

This book clearly demonstrates renewed life after horrible physical, sexual and emotional child abuse, healing after the pain - a lifetime journey for many that can begin with this book. Explicit stories of terror combined with wonderful stories of hope and support abound in Carissa's book. It will positively change/enhance many lives and shine light on the often-ignored darknesses of juvenile-exploitation. It will lead many to the lifelong process of healing via open dialogue, therapeutic care and resources (many presented at the end of the book), and further advocacy and legislation in much neglected areas.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Fred J Allen on August 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book tore my heart out and then filled that wound with hope and healing. It is a clear-eyed look at what happens to a 12-year-old girl on the streets. The author does not flinch from events that others might turn away from, imply, or obscure. The question that permeates the book is how can you survive those kinds of experiences? How can you go on? The author who doesn't spare us the brutality of her life, also doesn't hesitate to credit the many kind, generous and good people who reach out to her. In one scene, she is taken to a doctor by the police. During the exam, she refuses to let the doctor go further, and the doctor doesn't push or insist, he instantly respects the wishes of this child in front of him. The author says it is the first time she said "No," and someone listened. It is such a small thing, but I wanted to hug that doctor. Every teacher needs to read about her high school math teacher Mrs. Wegerman. Every corrections officer and youth worker needs to read about her counselor in the California Youth Authority, Ron Jenkins. Anyone who has a daughter needs to read this book. It will galvanize your commitment to protect and nurture your children, no matter how troubled your relationship.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By DTD on July 22, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
To say this book is powerful is an understatement. The writing connects the reader immediately with Carissa. There have been few books that do this so well. You do not relive her horrific childhood from a distance. That child grabs your attention from the get go. The writing is unflinching yet you feel the pulse of a survivor through it all. You just know she's going to make it. And the trip is well worth it.

Thankfully, it also tells how a few really good people took her on, discovered her incredible intellect and spirit, and kept pushing her in the right direction. But she had been harmed body and mind. She often takes two steps back for every step forward. But the superb writing more than explains why. And yes there were the people who totally failed her. But her huge heart, street smarts, and being told she had potential - kept pushing her to keep going. The strides she makes in getting herself a law degree and a MBA are just incredible. Those who helped her were more than rescuers along the way. Once Carissa was an adult, she looked back at those that had helped her with gratitude. But she also knew the final piece of her own puzzle was understanding that she too would become a child advocate.

Frankly, I'd like to get my own bulldozer and plow down that motel in Fresno myself. But that's why the book is so worthy of praise. Runaway Girl is a book I will remember for a long time. It's not preachy - it's just real. We learned a lot from the testimony of the child victims at Penn State. Runaway Girl does that times ten. It's really an incredible, compelling read.
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