Dirty: A Search for Answers Inside America's Teenage Drug Epidemic

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9780060730611: Dirty: A Search for Answers Inside America's Teenage Drug Epidemic

Venturing into uncharted territory, mother and award-winning journalist Meredith Maran takes us inside teenagers' hearts, minds, and central nervous systems to explore the causes and consequences of our nation's drug crisis. In these pages we get to know the kids, the parents, the therapists, and the drug treatment programs at their best and worst. We're face-to-face with seventeen-year-old Mike, whose life revolves around selling, smoking, and snorting speed; fifteen-year-old Tristan - the boy next door - who can't get enough pot, pills, or vodka; and sixteen-year-old Zalika, a runaway, crack dealer, and prostitute since the age of twelve. Combining powerful on-the-street reporting and groundbreaking research, Dirty is essential reading for every parent and professional who works with or cares about children or teenagers.

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Review:

Meredith Maran’s Dirty: A Search For Answers Inside America’s Teenage Drug Epidemic is a moving study of America’s failure to address teen drug use. The book, which grew out of the author’s struggles with her own son’s addiction, throughout harmonizes a general analysis of America’s War on Drugs and drug treatment programs with a close study of three particular teens. Zalika, Mike, and Tristan offer no happy endings. For Tristan, a boy from a well-to-do family, even the loving treatment of Phoenix Academy cannot lead to a life free from chemical dependency. The prison-like therapeutic community of Center Point, meanwhile, seems only to drive Mike and his fellow addicts further into deception and isolation. A prostitute and sometimes addict, sixteen-year-old Zalika is eventually abandoned by her family and the drug court system as she watches her closest friends die around her.

Though the book offers horrifying statistics regarding the rise of teen drug use, Dirty’s stories of Zalika, Tristan, and Mike are the most effective exposition of America’s failure to serve its most needy citizens. With Tristan, Maran takes the controversial stand that some limited drug use may actually be helpful in the process of self-discovery. Through Mike, readers see the failure of the adult AA model for teens who are not ready to embrace change. With Zalika Maran observes that a diagnosis of drug addiction is often only a "partial diagnosis"--a means to get a troubled teen into treatment that inevitably ignores a host of family, socio-economic, and educational problems. Threaded throughout remains Maran’s personal longing to understand why and how her own son could have fallen prey to drugs…and how he was lucky enough to return sober. --Patrick O’Kelley

About the Author:

Meredith Maran is the author of several books of nonfiction, including the bestsellers What It's Like to Live Now, Ben & Jerry's Double Dip, and Class Dismissed. She writes regularly for such publications as Self, Parenting, Utne Reader, Tikkun, Bride's, Mother Jones, Teacher, The San Francisco Chronicle, and The San Jose Mercury News.

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2004. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. 198 x 135 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Venturing into uncharted territory, mother and award-winning journalist Meredith Maran takes us inside teenagers hearts, minds, and central nervous systems to explore the causes and consequences of our nation s drug crisis. In these pages we get to know the kids, the parents, the therapists, and the drug treatment programs at their best and worst. We re face-to-face with seventeen-year-old Mike, whose life revolves around selling, smoking, and snorting speed; fifteen-year-old Tristan -- the boy next door -- who can t get enough pot, pills, or vodka; and sixteen-year-old Zalika, a runaway, crack dealer, and prostitute since the age of twelve. Combining powerful on-the-street reporting and groundbreaking research, Dirty is essential reading for every parent and professional who works with or cares about children or teenagers. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780060730611

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers Inc, United States, 2004. Hardback. Book Condition: New. Reprint. 198 x 135 mm. Language: English . Brand New Book. Venturing into uncharted territory, mother and award-winning journalist Meredith Maran takes us inside teenagers hearts, minds, and central nervous systems to explore the causes and consequences of our nation s drug crisis. In these pages we get to know the kids, the parents, the therapists, and the drug treatment programs at their best and worst. We re face-to-face with seventeen-year-old Mike, whose life revolves around selling, smoking, and snorting speed; fifteen-year-old Tristan -- the boy next door -- who can t get enough pot, pills, or vodka; and sixteen-year-old Zalika, a runaway, crack dealer, and prostitute since the age of twelve. Combining powerful on-the-street reporting and groundbreaking research, Dirty is essential reading for every parent and professional who works with or cares about children or teenagers. Bookseller Inventory # AAS9780060730611

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