Go Ask Alice: A classic YA lit focus

YA classic lit: Go Ask Alice

Wow…yep, that pretty much sums it up. This book was interesting from the moment I read the foreword note about this book being about a young girl who experiences life’s many ups and downs with the influence of drugs. I could not put this book down (as sad and grossed out as I was at points I still read on). I can see how young adults would be interested in this book. It speaks of the issues young adults face, how they handle those situations, and how pressures can make people easily crack under that pressure. At the time Go Ask Alice was published, drugs and the hardships teens face were a real issue. The awareness that we have today was not as available. Also, many drugs were being experimented with and it wrecked many lives, as seen by her life. I think the issues in the book are prevalent today. Still today teens are pressured into take drug. They experiment and end up on a bad road in life. It was sickening to me that she was asked to the first party with the cokes and she did not know that it was laced with LSD. It was introduced without her approval and she was instantly hooked. I appreciated her persistence in trying to quit but the stresses of classmates, influences, and reputations stood in her way constantly. I think the book had such an impact because it was based on actual diary entries and her life really was destroyed due to drugs. Like the epilogue says, “she was among the thousand teens that lost their life due to drugs that year.”

                At times the book got hard to read because of the terrible things she did as well as what was done to her. I personally don’t think I could have read it as a young teen because it was brutal at times. As an adult, I felt bad inside when I put it down to think that a young 15 year old was treated the way she was. Also, the girls she met, like Babbie who was 12 and a child prostitute was heart breaking. I guess in my small town these things seem so out of this world, but even today they can be a reality. Go Ask Alice is a great book, I recommend it for a quick, interesting read, but be prepared for some graphic details of how life was for those wrapped around the addiction of drugs. 

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