Methamphetamine use, commonly known on the street as crystal, tweak, the New Prozac, and crank, has become a growing problem in the U.S. in the last several years. From what I have read, there is no worse drug addiction than crystal meth. It not only affects the person using but the personal relationships they have, as well. It is not just my humble opinion when I tell you that these drugs have the power to kill or cause great harm. A great example would be Nic Sheff, the author of TWEAK. At an early age, just a babe himself, Nick had his first taste of drugs and alcohol. Drug use escalated in Nic's case - he went from just smoking pot to abusing cocaine, heroin, and crystal meth. For over a decade, on and off, Nic used drugs. The book opens up with a bang - Nic relapsing after 18 months of being clean and sober.
You can call TWEAK a young adult book if you like, since Nic is a young adult, just in his twenties, but in actuality it is a book that will appeal to any age level, young and old alike. Teens will definitely gravitate to Nic's story because of the fact that it is someone about their age using drugs, and they can relate to it (maybe not completely but on some level). The general public may find it of interest, because it will give them an insight into the mind of an addict. Perhaps a reader may find comfort in this story, knowing that he is not alone.
It occurred to me as I was reading TWEAK that the book was like a cleanser for Nic; a way to cleanse his soul. Writing TWEAK couldn't have been easy for him, as Nic had to relive everything he did and put it down on paper. Some of what I read admittedly shocked me. I can't imagine what goes inside an addict's mind. The book was so honest; at times I ached for him. Other times I wanted to strangle him for what he was doing to himself and his family. I hate to say that I didn't think his clean and sober status was going to last very long. It was as if it was too good to be true. At the end of the book, we learn that Nic is now clean and dealing with his demons on an everyday basis. I expect that this is not going to be an easy road for him or for his family.
Everybody participates in addictive behavior in some way or another. Some people believe that people get involved in addictive behaviors because they are reckless, self-absorbed, and have no self-control. For the most part, I stand in the camp that believes that drug and alcohol addictions are diseases. You may choose to get treatment, but once an addict always an addict. Nic is never going to escape the addict label even if he does remain clean the rest of his life.
Nic's father, David Sheff, also has written a book about meth addiction. BEAUTIFUL BOY looks at Nic's addiction through the eyes of a parent. Mary Pipher, a psychologist and the renowned author of the book REVIVING OPHELIA, says on the jacket of David Sheff's book: "When one of us tells the truth, he makes it easier for all of us to open our hearts to our pain and that of others." Good reason to read Nic's book and his father's. Pick up your copies today.show more
by Margaret Soldani