Memoir Overview

Finding my roots gave me wings

Many adopted children don’t get to meet their birth parents. I was lucky enough not only to reconnect with mine, but to discover that my birth mother was Hollywood icon Karen Black. I spent over 50 years yearning for her, and we had exactly one year to connect, bond, and heal, before I lost her again.

Finding Karen Black takes the reader on an emotional journey from childhood longing to dream fulfilled, from struggle to stardom, and from the first moments of a joyful reunion through a year of discovery, reflection, loss and renewal.


This is the first book to delve into the life of ‘70s cinema icon Karen Black. She rose to Hollywood fame in the film Five Easy Pieces (1970), opposite Jack Nicholson, garnering a Golden Globe win and Academy Award nomination. Her sensitive turn as Myrtle in The Great Gatsby (1974) earned her a second Golden Globe. She worked with legendary directors such as Robert Altman, in the Grammy-winning Nashville (1975), and Alfred Hitchcock, in Family Plot (1976). Her six-decade filmography includes 203 credits.


The first half of the memoir intertwines the narrative of Karen’s rise to fame with the story of my childhood without her, leading up to our emotional reunion. The second half focuses on the year we had together before Karen passed away. The book traces our sundered stories amid our longing for each other, the emotional cost of our separation, and the healing power of our reunion. No other memoir tells an adoption reunion story from the standpoint of a celebrity’s child.