March 18, 2009

Anonymous: Go Ask Alice

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

The little research I did about this book before reading it left me unable to tell if it was fictional or nonfiction. I can say this for it, however. The editors have left a note instead. This book is based on a real diary kept by a teenage girl. If you're unfamiliar with the book it is about a teenage girl's struggle as a drug user. The last sentence on the back cover of my copy is very true. Alice is unforgettable.

There are few words that come to mind to describe how I feel about Go Ask Alice after reading it. Utterly stunned, perhaps. This story was unbelievable, not in the sense of my not seeing truth to it but for it being so very intense. I've never read anything like it. I can see that it would be a very good book to read for some people and why it's so well recommended.

There is a peaceful activity some teachers have their students volunteer to take part in. I don't have a name for it but what they say is something like this.

"Whoever (fill-in-the-blank), cross the line and step across the room. Look around you. Forgive yourself and all the others around you. Feel the peace and forgiveness you have for yourself and for each other. Cross the line once more."

I remember a couple of my teachers saying something to that effect when I was in eight and eleventh grade. I won't bother to go into the details of the second time. As an eight grader when my teacher said to do this for who knew where to find drugs on campus, I was the only student who did not cross the room. I was the only one who did not know. I've stayed in that bubble and net of safety all my life, too.

What is my point? As someone who has been from the complete other end of the rope, this book truly shocked me. As an afterthought I have thankfulness for being in my own naive world which protected me from what Alice went through. There isn't an Alice in real life to hug but for every person who relates to Alice, I wish to offer a hug. Go Ask Alice is two diaries worth of sorrow for her.


jugglingpaynes said...

Sounds interesting. Maybe if I am in a reeeeaaaallly good mood I'll give it a try. I have known a few people who have done various drugs, but having taken meds all my life and feeling their side effects I never had any desire to try anything.

Good review Kerian.


Kerian said...

Thank you, jp. I think reading this book while in a good mood to begin with is advisable.