drug addiction

cover of The Seventh Wish, has a goldfish with green eyes under the water

The Seventh Wish

By Kate Messner
Star Rating

Rated by Kristen R
Apr 3, 2023

“Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”


The Seventh Wish, by Kate Messner, interweaves fantasy and real life.  This middle-grade fiction novel focuses on magic, empathy, overcoming obstacles, and family/friend relationships. 

Charlie Brennan, twelve-years-old, is ice fishing when she catches her first fish.  The fish offers her a wish in trade for its freedom. 

Charlie takes up ice fishing to pay for the perfect solo dress for her upcoming Irish dancing competition.  She desperately wants to move up

Love Me Back

By Merritt Tierce
Star Rating

Rated by Melody K.
Mar 12, 2015

In this novel, Marie, a young mother, is a server at an upscale Dallas restaurant.  Some nights the tips border on phenomenal. Yet, she is slowly suffocating under a great, sorrowful blanket of depression. She exists, she suffers, she endures acts of degradation and abuse from men on the off chance that occasionally she will experience something other than sadness and pain. Her daughter is a buoy that she lets go of to sink back into the nasty muck. Love Me Back holds no happy ending, no redemption.  Tierce is excellent, she never takes the focus off Marie even when it sickens us to watch.

Lips Unsealed

By Belinda Carlisle
Star Rating

Rated by Diane H.
Oct 26, 2014

Belinda Carlisle seems to have lived the quintessential rocker’s life—starting off poor and dreaming of a magical life, being in love with music at a young age, starting a band almost on a whim, seeing her band rise to fame, drowning in drugs. Belinda’s story, Lips  Unsealed, is one of brutal honesty about how her own shortcomings and insecurities kept her in the grip of addiction even while her life seemed perfect and almost fairy-tale like to those on the outside. Her life reads as an inspiring and cautionary tale. It also made me want to dig up The Go-Go’s albums and listen with a greater

The Hit

By Melvin Burgess
Star Rating

Rated by Kate M.
Mar 7, 2014

Adam scores the ultimate tickets to the last concert of rock star Jimmy Earle. How does he know that it is Jimmy's last concert? Because Jimmy has taken Death, the latest and greatest drug on the street. Live one glorious week on the high of your life...then die. Adam and his girlfriend Lizzie are there to see Earle give the performance of a lifetime, then die on stage. As the crowd goes wild, the two escape the area to find masked members of the Zealots handing out Death capsules on the street.

Without hope for a better future, thousands of young people around Lizzie and Adam happily accept

Methland: The Death and Life of an American Small Town

By Nick Reding

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Aug 21, 2013

I was sitting on the patio of my favorite bakery on a drizzly Saturday morning, eating a croissant, when the woman doing a crossword next to me noticed the title of the book I was reading: Methland. "Excuse me," she said, "but can you tell me a little about that book?"

It's a title that's bound to pique interest. She told me that she grew up in the sixties and doesn't really know a lot about meth. Indeed, methamphetamine first showed up on the national radar in a big way in the 2000s, and has since captured the public imagination as a drug that's weirdly predominant in rural working-class

Stay Close by Libby Cataldi

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Apr 29, 2011


In Stay Close, Libby Cataldi, the former head of the Calverton School (a private school in Maryland), writes from her own point of view about the challenges and worry she has faced as the mother of a son with a drug addiction.  Her story is poignant and so honest about the feelings of guilt and loss that she experienced as she watched her oldest son battle addiction to just about any drug you can imagine from his early teen years through his late twenties.  The book is interspersed with her son's own words and viewpoints regarding situations that occurred throughout his life, lending

Imperfect Birds by Anne Lamott

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Sep 10, 2010

Imperfect Birds by Anne LamottI have enjoyed most of Anne Lamott’s work, especially the non-fiction. Imperfect Birds was not my favorite. The story centers around 17 year old, Rosie, her mother, Elizabeth and step-father, James. The entire book follows Rosie’s entanglement in drug use. I think parents who are dealing with this issue might find some help in the story, but for me, it was a slow read. It does give insight into the struggles of being a parent, the need for setting clear boundaries, and not caving to teenage demands in order to gain their approval.

This book follows the same mother-daughter characters found in

Lonely Werewolf Girl by Martin Millar

Rated by Library Staff (not verified)
Mar 14, 2010

Kalix MacRinnalch, youngest daughter of the reigning werewolf king and closet laudanum addict, is on the run. Which is unsurprising, since she attacked her father during an argument about her boyfriend and ran off. She's currently running from her family—who are split on the notion of whether she should be rescued or executed for treason—from rival clans, and from human hunters who see her and all her kind as abominations.

The absolute best thing about this book is how utterly prosaic it is, and I mean that in the very best of ways. You would think that a war of succession between the


By Ellen Hopkins
Star Rating

Rated by Kate M.
Nov 4, 2009

Tricks by Ellen Hopkins is a novel told in verse follows 5 teens. Each one is trying to find love and each one ends up selling their body by the end of the book. Eden's father is an evangelical minister who cares deeply about setting a good example for his flock. So when Eden falls for Andrew, a non-believer, she knows she must keep it a secret or face her parents wrath. Seth lives with his father working on the family farm in rural Indiana. Seth's mother died from cancer without ever knowing her only son is gay and he is afraid to tell his homophobic father. Seth goes looking for

Beautiful Boy

By David Sheff
Star Rating

Rated by Helen H.
Apr 14, 2009

David Sheff shares the heart-breaking story of his son Nic’s tenuous life on drugs. Interwoven in the story are the results of research and studies about kids from shared custody homes, the affects of drugs (especially Methamphetamine) on the human body and psyche, and advice from a variety of sources for friends and families of addicts. Beautiful Boy especially resonates with me, as Sheff searches for answers as to how this could have happened to his son and in what ways he might be responsible. As a single mom, I was able to identify sobering parallels between his family situation and my own

Dec 29, 2008

In Cooked, Jeff Henderson tells an inspirational story of triumph over the odds. While growing up in the inner city, he is attracted to the wealth of neighborhood hustlers. Soon he is running drugs himself and making huge sums of money. At 24 he's arrested and spends ten years in prison where, while working as a dishwasher in the prison kitchen, Jeff discovers a passion that ultimately saves him. Drawing on the same tenacity that ensured his success on the streets, Jeff relentlessly pursues his goal of becoming a chef, ultimately earning a place in some of the most exclusive kitchens in