Friday, August 16, 2013

Review Me Twice: Beautiful Boy by David Sheff

I can't help but feel like I've read this story before... oh wait, I have. It was kind of interesting seeing the "other side" of Nic Sheff's story, but I just didn't feel like there was enough new information to make it worth my while. I understand that both David and Nic wanted to work through their version of the events and get them on paper and share them with the world... but personally, I didn't need to read both. Maybe if I were an addict, I would identify better with Nic. Or if I were the parent of an addict, I would have more feels for David. But I find myself more attached to Ellen Hopkins' characters than I did to either of these guys.

While I liked David's writing style more than Nic's, it was only by a little bit, and it still wasn't enough to really grab me, especially when I knew the basics of the story already.

However, I would recommend this book to any parent of an addict or someone in a similar situation. I think David Sheff speaks honestly and doesn't get too flowery or pretentious about the whole thing. He seems to honestly want to write to tell his story and hope that others can benefit from his experience.

This is the first time on this blog that I haven't finished the book (though... I'm in the last third, so I'm pretty damn close.  About 50 pages.)

The big, huge, glaring flaw with this book is that David Sheff gets crazy technical and overly informational about drugs and what happens to people on drugs and all the effects of drugs on the body and families.  Which makes sense, but got to be a little much, making me not really want to read the book.

I also wanted to read about David's point of view about the time that Nic talks about in his memoirs.  I wanted to see the two stories coincide.  But it's in the last third that David talks about Nic's memoir (Nic covers his final, and probably most severe, relapse with drugs.)  He really glazes over it to because, for David, it's just another round of Nic being on drugs and doesn't really differ from the rest of them.

I did think the story is well written and you do feel so sorry and terrible and you really understand how hard addiction can be on the family but... eh, I was expecting the stories to interact more than they did.

I'm with Alex, though.  If you have a family member who has a drug problem, this is probably a book that would be good for you.

My Bottom Line 2 out of 5.

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