The Vicarious High of Narcotics in Nonfiction*

by on June 21st, 2013
The Vicarious High of Narcotics in Nonfiction* Cover Image

Did you enjoy local author Cheeni Rao’s memoir so much that you wondered where you could find more like it? Well you’re in luck, ‘cuz I just cataloged a few recently released drug memoirs. Check them out:

Marijuanamerica by Ryan Nerz, also published April 2, and receiving some pretty favorable reviews on Amazon.

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White Out: The Secret Life of Heroin; A Memoir by Michael W. Cline, published April 2. Read a review from the New Yorker.





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Tripping with Allah by Michael Muhammad Knight, published March 12. Actually as much about a higher power and its construction as it is about getting higher. See what other readers have to say on GoodReads.

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Humoldt: Life on America’s Marijuana Frontier by Emily Brady, published June 18 (I know, I’m jumping the gun on this one a little, but this kind of insider reportage is hard to come by and worthy of note). If you know the reference by the name of the county and enjoy fantasizing about the lush greenery of Northern California, it’s worth your while to spare a few hours and read this book. Get your library card out and place a hold now.




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And for the heartbreaking perspective from the father of an addict, published in 2008, Beautiful Boy by David Sheff, whose new book Clean came out on April 2. Maybe you heard about him on NPR? Listen to the March 27 interview on Weekend Edition or the April 3 one on Fresh Air.





Place a hold on this bookOkay, one more, an oldie but goody from our Writers’ Workshop friend and sometimes visiting speaker, Denis Johnson. This one’s for the fiction lovers in this town who still haven’t read it or seen the movie. Check out Jesus’ Son, and note that Denis Johnson is also a poet. You will see his lyricism in his writing.




*The title Writing on Drugs was taken.

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About Melody Dworak

Melody Dworak
Melody buys books for the second half of the nonfiction Dewey numbers on the 2nd floor. She has recently been bitten by the fiction bug, but loves those historical reference questions regardless. Visit the digital collections she manages at and