Runaway Girl by Carissa Phelps
At the age of twelve, Carissa’s mom packed her daughter a suitcase, drove her downtown, and left her in the lobby at Juvenile Hall. That was the start of Carissa’s downward spiral. She time in more group homes than she could count, running away from most of them. She was raped and forced to become a child prostitute. When she was shy of fourteen years old, Carissa was finally arrested and spent six months locked up in Juvenile Hall.
With the help of the kindness of many people, this young woman was able to save herself from the streets and salvage her life. Although it wasn’t a simple or easy journey, Carissa ended up earned a law degree and an MBA (Masters of Business Administration) from UCLA. Her story will haunt teen readers with its honesty and raw emotion, making it a hard book to put down. I would recommend it to fans of Dave Pelzer’s “Lost Boy” books, readers who liked Push by Sapphire and teens who enjoy urban drama.