The best memoirs of drug and alcohol addiction

The Books I Picked & Why

Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget

By Sarah Hepola

Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget

Why this book?

Unexplained men and bruises the next morning are only a few of the unremembered experiences Sarah Hepola recalls in this honest, raw, poignant memoir. Finding that her creativity didn’t come from a bottle, she gets sober and finds a life she didn’t know she wanted.


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I Swear I'll Make It Up to You: A Life on the Low Road

By Mishka Shubaly

I Swear I'll Make It Up to You: A Life on the Low Road

Why this book?

In 1992, Mishka Shubaly survived a mass shooting at his school, his parents divorced, his father abandoned him, and he swore he would right all the wrongs for his mother. Instead, he began a love affair with the bottle and barely crawled out, but he did, and we cheer him on at each twist and turn in his journey.


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Drinking: A Love Story

By Caroline Knapp

Drinking: A Love Story

Why this book?

Knapp writes about her life and struggles with anorexia and alcoholism with the same attention to detail that she put into her career as a journalist. The writing is witty, heartfelt, and encouraging to any alcoholic and any woman struggling to find their true worth.


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Girl Walks Out of a Bar: A Memoir

By Lisa F. Smith

Girl Walks Out of a Bar: A Memoir

Why this book?

A New York lawyer, Lisa F. Smith, spirals downward while her friends reach new heights in their careers, life, and relationships. Cocaine, booze, lies, and depression fuel her descent. It’s raw; it’s honest, and it’s a beautiful story of redemption and recovery.


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Woman of Substances: A Journey Into Drugs, Alcohol and Treatment

By Jenny Valentish

Woman of Substances: A Journey Into Drugs, Alcohol and Treatment

Why this book?

Journalist Jenny Valentish knows treatment, AA, and the pathways to addiction and recovery. It’s brutally honest, and her story reads like so many others – some who didn’t make it to recovery. She further educates the reader with research and a better understanding of the psychology and physiology that drive female addiction with humor and exceptional insight.


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