"It lacks the wild ups and downs of Go Ask Alice (1971), or the creeping horror of Melvin Burgess's more literary Smack (p. 398), but contains a heartfelt anti-drug message in the swift downward spiral of a likable main character. (Fiction. 13-15)"
By-the-numbers addiction fiction—as friend Nicole and others look on worriedly, Samantha, 19, breaks away from her alcoholic mother, simultaneously plunges into heroin abuse and earns money as a topless dancer, falls in love with a smooth- talking, thoroughly corrupt police officer, and overdoses while waiting for him to take her away from it all.
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