GEORGIA DURANTE—Model, Mafia Wife, Mother, and Stunt Driver—has packed a lifetime of lessons into forty-eight years. This is the true story of one of Hollywood’s most successful female commercial stunt drivers. A woman who can dominate a two-ton vehicle at high speeds, but off road has careened from one emotional head-on collision to another. The story, chronicles the life of a battered woman as she struggles to break the abusive cycle while engineering her escape from the Mafia underworld.
Hollywood producers have known two Georgia Durante's: the steely-nerved stuntwoman with the skill to handle a three-ton high-performance vehicle in high-speed precision maneuvers; and the beautiful model and actress who, at seventeen, was considered the most photographed girl in the country. They knew only those sides of her because that was all she chose to reveal. Only now does she share the full story of her life, in The Company She Keeps.
Georgia reveals how she went from the "Kodak Girl" to drivinggetaway cars for the mob. Today she is still driving getaway cars, but she is now doing it as a stunt driver for the movies. Georgia has taken the negatives in her life and turned them into positives and she demonstrates to her readers how they can do it too. Georgia has recently been featured on E! True Hollywood Story and The Montel Williams Show. A movie about her life is presently being negotiated.
Barnes & Noble.com
The Company She Keeps
Excerpts from Georgia Durante’s
The Company She Keeps
He placed one bullet back in the chamber and gave it a whirl. He then placed the gun at my temple.
"What are you doing!" I cried.
"I'm gonna find out once and for all how badly you really want to leave," he snarled.
"Please, Joe... don't,"
He brought his face within inches of mine. All I could see were his eyes. I watched in horror as demonic possession took place. In a voice that wasn't his, he spewed, "Are you sure you want to leave?"
Paralyzed with fear, I couldn't talk. He pulled the trigger. Click. My life passed before my eyes. I saw my daughter, my parents. Babe and Billie. I'm going to die.
"Do you remember now what I said I'd do if you ever left me? Well, the time has come." He was crying, too.
"I won't leave! I'll stay! Please don't kill me. What about Toni? Oh my God..."
He considered this for a moment, then dismissed it. "You're lying again. I don't believe you." He pulled the trigger again. Click.
Come on, White, you know what to say. You've been here before.
"I love you, Joe. I was just hurt. I had to punish you for hurting me. I was going to come back after you learned a lesson. I love you too much to stay away from you forever. You know that!"
He hesitated. Relief surged his face, then slowly he removed the gun from my head. Pulling me to my feet, he gently picked me up and lowered me onto the bed.
"You do love me, don't you?" he asked, wanting to believe.
"If I didn't love you, why would I be so angry over what you did?"
The demon evaporated. "Yeah, I guess you do love me, but you've got to forget about that now. It won't happen again, I promise you that. I can't live without you, Georgia. Promise you'll never leave me... promise."
Excerpt #2 from Georgia Durante’s
The Company She Keeps
I grabbed some of our clothes, with little thought as to what I was taking and what I was leaving behind. Too filled with fear to think. We made a few trips and got in the car. My heart beat wildly. My hand shook so hard I couldn't get the key into the ignition. The more I panicked the longer it took. The security gate seemed to move in slow motion as I sat waiting impatiently, looking over my shoulder, expecting to see Joe appear out of nowhere.
Calm down. Act natural, slow down, you’re doing fine. You’ll make it. Remember, where there's a will, there's a way. You taught me that!
We exited and turned down the hill toward the street. The next hurdle was to get by the tennis court without being seen. No chance. Joe's eagle eyes spotted the car filled to the top with clothes. Toni smiled and waved. He stood frozen. His eyes told me to turn back if I knew what was good for me. I looked away–my foot, acting entirely on its own, pressed the pedal beneath it. Blurred images rushed past my window. I moved on pure adrenaline. I had no idea where I was going. The car drove itself, or maybe my Shadow had taken over, I don’t know. I found myself on the 405 freeway heading north, having no idea how I had gotten there.
“Mommy, where we going?”
“I don’t know, honey.”
“What're we gonna to do when we get there?”
“I don’t know.”
“I’m hungry, Mommy, can we stop at that McDonalds?”
I exited the freeway and drove up to the drive-through window. I opened my wallet to pay for the food. Seven dollars. I looked at the gas gauge. Thank God, it was full.
What am I doing? How far can I get on this?
Where there's a will, there's a way. You can’t turn back now!
What They’re Saying About
The Company She Keeps
"Georgia Durante has written a gripping, fast-paced, insider's look at an underworld she knew only too well. Breathtakingly readable."
"We’ve all heard of the Mafia, and read about mobsters, but Georgia Durante saw them up close. She lived with them. She experienced their violence. She survived their wars. In The Company She Keeps.
Pulitzer Prize winning columnist and
"This wonderful story of courage offers an exciting and unique look at how organized crime in this country can destroy much more than the usual victims of its activities. Georgia Durante rose above it. I salute her."
James D. Henderson
Former Chief of the Los Angeles Strike Force on Organized Crime, United States Department of Justice
"Georgia Durante’s life exemplifies many of the strengths I’ve written about. She refused to surrender to abuse, and moved from being a victim to being a victor. She’s an inspiration for any woman who feels her situation is hopeless.
Susan Forward, Ph.D.
best-selling Author of Emotional Blackmail and Men Who Hate Women and the Women Who Love Them
"In (The Company She Keeps) Georgia Durante, not only survived her years in the underworld, but lived to write about it. A fascinating life. A fascinating book."
Best selling author
of Wiseguy (Goodfellas) and Casino
"(Georgia Durante) has had quite a life, and the courage it takes to live it. I would have never imagined all (she’s) been through. (She) hides a lot behind that lovely smile."
"I spent a lifetime chasing gangsters out of the lives of decent people with the help of my colleagues in the FBI. Georgia Durante chased them out of her life by herself. She should have worked with us. This is an exceptionally intriguing book with eye-opening lessons for everyone.
Bill Fleming, Special Agent (Retired)
Federal Bureau of Investigation
The Company She Keeps could very well be the woman’s version of my biography, "Wiseguy". A truly unique and insightful dimension to the underworld, written with bone chilling detail. Very well done.
Witness Protection Program
"Georgia Durante has great skill as an author. Her warmth, her daring and her intelligence make this book a great adventure. I couldn't put it down. Read this book! You'll be amazed, you'll be excited. You'll be grateful I made you do it.
Entertainer and Comedian
"It’s one of those stories that makes you want to write a better critique than anyone else’s. But Georgia has written the best one of all. You’ll agree with me tomorrow morning when you still haven’t put The Company She Keeps to bed.
Morton Downey, Jr.
Network Talk Show Pioneer
"(The Company She Keeps) is the high-interest, quick paced account of life in the fast lane. At the heart is the love of danger and excitement which is, for (Georgia), almost a fatal flaw. Fortunately, a love of autos and an uncanny ability to control high-horsepower cars led to an unexpected escape route. (Hers) is a story well worth reading.
Samuel Hallock duPont, Jr.
Entrepreneur and Philanthropist
"Quite unreal, really. What a life."
Musician; Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young
"Once you start reading this book, you cannot put it down. This book covers everything from flashy show-people, to the mob, to ordinary everyday people. There’s a surprise on every page and a twist and turn in every chapter."
"(Georgia Durante) has an adventurous spirit and has led a glamorous life. She honestly shares painful experiences in this fascinating and entertaining book."
"(The Company She Keeps) is a story of today. Women will relate to (Georgia’s) inner strength that enabled her to overcome obstacles; and men will relate to (her) courage and admire (her) perseverance.
Entertainer and Comedian
"(The Company She Keeps) is a superbly written autobiography about a lovely young woman’s struggle and victory. What a struggle; what a victory; and what a woman! Georgia is one of a kind, and so is her book."
Actor and Author