Go Ask Alice has sold more than five million copies and after picking it up and reading it, then it becomes obvious why. Even though the copyright is 1971, it still continues to engross not only teens but also adults with its edgy, dangerously honest diary of a good girl gone bad.
The book was girl’s diary, that somebody got a hold on and published, anonymously. Names and places were changed by wishes of concerned peoples. Knowing such events really happened adds a lot to the already breathtaking plot. At the beginning you are pulled into by how perfect she is and what a great life she has, that if you never read the back, you would have never guessed what was to come. Once this book is picked up, it is sure to be devoured in one sitting.
She is such a naive character that you cannot help but to fall in love with her. There is an all American girl sense to her. It is written as if she is really talking to you, repeating words, and using fragments such as “..but oh, Diary I do.” It is almost as if she were conversing right with the reader. When read it cannot be helped but to imagine her and to imagine her voice and how she would sound, it is extremely easy to vividly imagine it all, with all the details given and the way it is written like how she would really talk. It can easily be compared to a soliloquy in the way she writes.
When at her grandparents she gets invited to party, where she is slipped LSD. That is when popularity and the rush from drugs start to kick in. Her entries show you the dark, vivid details of drugs and the reason why some may do drugs although it is not a statement on the drug world or middle class, neither does it provide any solutions. All she was known as flips and she becomes a new person entirely, doing unexpected things that keep you reading to see what her next move is. Life goes from boring and all American like, to parties and running away, even homelessness and fake friends. Sometimes there are no dates for she lost track of time and the world. At one point you even get a little bit of history of how college kids were in that decade and how life was back then with protests on war and hippies.
It flips back and forth between doing the right thing and going back down that dark road. When she gets it back together and tries to do right, kids just bring her back down and torture her. Her pain is brought out in her entries and it is excruciating. Many issues are brought about in this book letting many different kinds of people relate which always makes a book more enjoyable. There is drug abuse, bullying, boy issues, right activists, business, family drama, psychiatric wards and death.
This book has received excellent reviews from The New York Times, The Boston Globe, Publishers Weekly and several others. For the past thirty nine years it has left a powerful mark on readers. This first person account of drug addiction from a young girl’s point of view will continue to leave its mark on generations to come and should be mass printed. If anything the validity of this book itself will entertain you with such a roller coaster, that dizziness will last even after the ride has ended. The ending epilogue may just be the most shocking of all, leaving a major debate, that still today has not been solved.