Under Cover: “The Last Call” Profiles Addiction Survivor

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Wambaugh bookMy husband and kids love to rib me good-naturedly about my “habit.”

Those who know me well also know that I have a slight problem when it comes to diet coke. My kids say I’m addicted. I say that if you factor out the carbonation, artificial color, and chemical sugar, it’s not such a bad vice to have.

While the addiction comments are all in good fun, true addiction is no laughing matter. David Wambaugh, author and addiction survivor, will be visiting Barnes and Noble in Fashion Island this Sunday, August 18, to share his new book, “The Last Call,” and discuss just how un-funny his journey has been.

Wambaugh was adopted at the age of six months by his parents, successful crime novelist Joseph Wambaugh and his wife. He was raised in an affluent Los Angeles suburb and afforded many opportunities not available to the masses.

Still, by the time he reached his teenage years, Wambaugh was exhibiting behavioral problems, and had descended into the life of an alcoholic. Drinking led to the use of harder drugs, and he became a full-fledged addict.

In “The Last Call,” Wambaugh chronicles the roller coaster that was his life. From panhandling on the streets of L.A., to surviving a botched kidnap for ransom attempt, to life in state prison when the consequences finally caught up with him, he has experienced the full spectrum of destructive behavior and the turmoil it brings in its wake.

While “The Last Call” is most definitely the tale of a downward spiral, and the havoc an addict wreaks not only on their own life, but on the lives of all who love them as well, it is also a tale of redemption. Having a moment of epiphany in the back seat of a police car may not be the way an ex-cop’s son would hope to see the light, but that was how it happened for Wambaugh.

According to the book description found on Amazon.com, he had to learn the ropes inside the prison walls in order to survive, and likewise, had to learn the ropes on the outside in order to succeed. While a chronological adult, Wambaugh was an emotional child, and had to set about relearning the things that came naturally to the “normal” person.

Now, however, he has put together all of his life experience and is using it to help others struggling with addiction as an intervention specialist.

Wambaugh says “I lived a life that allowed me to experience many different levels of addiction, and its ramifications. I share my experience, strength, and the hope of a wonderful life that can be had if the person is able to successfully face and defeat his or her demon. I let them know on a very intimate and truthful level, that if I was able to succeed, they most certainly will too.”

Told from someone who was, thankfully, able to come out on the other side, “The Last Call” is a tale of destruction, and ultimately, redemption that is a must-read for anyone dealing with addiction.

This Sunday’s event will begin at 1:30 p.m. Wambaugh will introduce his book, sign copies, and share his story.

For more information, please call Barnes and Noble at 949-718-0109.

Edie Crabtree is an avid reader and the mother of three active boys.  She can be reached at [email protected].



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