Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Review: Clean by Amy Reed

Author:Amy Reed
Publisher:Simon & Schuster
Imprint:Simon Pulse
Pub. Date:08/09/2011
ISBN:1442413441 (ISBN13: 9781442413443)

Olivia, Kelly, Christopher, Jason, and Eva have one thing in common: They’re addicts. Addicts who have hit rock bottom and been stuck together in rehab to face their problems, face sobriety, and face themselves. None of them wants to be there. None of them wants to confront the truths about their pasts. But they’ll all have to deal with themselves and one another if they want to learn how to live. Because when you get that high, there’s nowhere to go but down, down, down.

(Summary and cover via Goodreads)


Clean is the story of 5 teens in rehab. Each of them had different lives and upbringings, and each of them had a different drug of choice. They all shared addiction and the need to get help, so now they are all in the same rehab center. This book follows all 5 of them through various stages of recovery. Even though they come from very different backgrounds and lifestyles, they seem to bond over their shared problems. 

As you can imagine, a book about teens in rehab is rather hard to read. I had a particularly hard time figuring out why some of them turned to drugs. The language was often harsh, but it was realistic to the setting. I felt the most sympathy for Olivia, whose problems truly seemed to be caused in large part by the actions of others. I was glad to see that they were all forced to take responsibility for their actions. Their group councilor was awesome. We could all used someone like her around to help us see things clearer.

Just like in real life, the end wasn't cut and dry. I worried that some of the characters may never get past their issues. However, there were a lot of really good things said in this book. I think this book can really facilitate some important discussions about how we react to things, what healthy ways to cope are, and how to recognize when people have a problem. There is also great hope that people can change and get better. That's something we could all stand to understand a little better.

Galley provided by publisher for review.

1 comment:

Hannah said...

I have a cousin who is a recovering addict (and in the early stages of said recovery), so maybe this book will help give me a little perspective.