Thursday, August 21, 2008
TWEAKED by Katherine Holubitsky
TWEAKED is a powerful book about addiction, its wide-ranging effects, and the toll it takes on all those it touches.
Gordie's older brother is addicted to crystal meth. He has watched his brother go from a normal teen to a strung out junkie. At first Gordie was the only one in the family to recognize the symptoms, but soon everyone had fallen victim to Chase's habit.
Gordie watched as Chase skipped class to get high. Then his grades tanked and he dropped out. He sold or pawned everything he had, and then he started stealing from their parents and "borrowing" from Gordie. When crimes outside the family ended in Chase's arrest, things began to sink in for their parents.
Now the unthinkable has happened. Chase brutally attacks a meter reader - a young man with a wife and child. The man is in intensive care hooked up to machines. If he dies, Chase will be charged with murder. All Gordie can hope is that this will turn things around for Chase. Court ordered detox should help him cleanup his act so he can return to school and some sort of normal life. But that's not the story with crystal meth. Addiction is often too powerful to beat.
TWEAKED is a hard-hitting story of the power of a very popular drug. Katherine Holubitsky tells a truthful and emotional story. Readers will sympathize with Gordie and marvel that he can hold on to his own values as he watches his brother self-destruct. Although the novel is filled with harsh details, Holubitsky is able to communicate her story without using the vulgar street language of the drug scene. By doing so, younger readers, even some tweens, could read and learn from this powerful book.