Go ask Alice

by Anonymous


Alice is your typical teenaged girl. She worries that she is too fat. She wants a boyfriend: "I wish I were popular and beautiful and wealthy and talented." She frequently makes resolutions in her diary to do better in school, work toward a calmer relationship with her mother, and lose weight. Her life changes when she goes to a party and is given acid in her drink. She loves the feeling the drug gives her: "Closed my eyes and the music began to absorb me physically. I could smell it and touch it and feel it as well as hear it." She wants more and quickly becomes a part of the drug scene. For about a year and a half Alice goes on and off drugs and runs away from home twice. Each time she manages to find her way back to her parents. They take her in, get her help, and all seems to be rosy until Alice is once again given acid without her knowledge. This time, she has a bad trip, ends up in the hospital, and then a mental hospital. Her parents stick by her, but her life of drug abuse ultimately ends with a fatal overdose—whether it is intentional or accidental is not known. Go Ask Alice has become a classic story of warning against the use of drugs. For the teen scene of 2006, this story will appear as slightly dated. The issues of relationships both in and out of school have not changed much in the last thirty years, but there are subtle differences in the culture that may prove distracting for a young person reading this book today. The basic story remains a chilling cautionary tale.

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*Warning, may contain a spoiler to some interested readers.* I discovered this book lying around my english teacher's classroom and figured I'd give it a try. The book is written as a diary of a young girl, following her as she continuously spirals into a self-destructive lifestyle. Half way through the book I became annoyed, partly with the main characters choices and also with the perception I had with the book's intent. The young lady in the book begins experimenting with drugs, then it drastically escalates to rape, prostitution, etc. in a short span of time. I can't help but think of how unrealistic, or infinitesimal these cases are among youth - yet the author blows the idea out of proportion to the point that it is trying to convince the reader that curious teenagers will ultimately end up abandoning their homes to live a life of trading sexual favors for drugs. I feel the book could of been better had in a few ways. Namely by slowly introducing temptation, rather than having the young girl hastily diving into everything that would lead to her downfall.

0 Responses posted in December
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