Prison Baby: A Memoir

“A powerful story.” —Piper Kerman

Prison Baby coverTwelve-year-old Deborah Jiang Stein felt like an outsider. Her multiracial features set her apart from her well-intentioned adoptive Jewish parents, who left unanswered questions about her past. When Deborah discovered a letter revealing the truth—that she was born in prison to a heroin-addicted mother and spent the first year of her life there—she spiraled into emotional lockdown and deeper trauma. For years Deborah turned to drugs, violence, and crime to cope with her grief until she abandoned her reckless life and forged her way through healing and, eventually, found peace. Prison Baby proves that redemption and acceptance are possible, even from the darkest corners.


“The ways this woman discovers herself, via the revelation of her birth mother and her reconciliation with her adoptive mother, show us how dramatically different worlds intersect, and why those intersections are so important to who we are. . . . A powerful story.”
—Piper Kerman, author of Orange Is the New Black

“Thank you for emerging the kind and whole person your words make clear you are.”
—Gloria Steinem 

“A harrowing, heartfelt glittering diamond of a memoir that shows being born in prison does not have to imprison the spirit. Gloriously alive and important.”
—Caroline Leavitt, author of Is This Tomorrow

“A compelling story of loss, addiction, and healing . . . told with grace and much heart.”
—Heidi W. Durrow, author of The Girl Who Fell from the Sky

“Candid and searing, Deborah Jiang Stein’s memoir is a remarkable story about identity, lost and found, and about the author’s journey to reclaim—and celebrate—that most primal of relationships, the one between mother and child. I dare you to read this book without crying.” —Mira Bartok, author of The Memory Palace

“Offers hope to the possibility of personal transformation for anyone. No punches pulled. Deborah is evidence of the magnificent resilience of the human spirit.”
—Sister Helen Prejean, author of Dead Man Walking

“This book defines what it is to be American, a woman caught in the whirlwinds of change, who finds the strength in herself to confront the challenges and overcome them. Wonderful.” —Jimmy Santiago Baca, author of A Place to Stand

Buy Prison Baby

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