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THE NUMBER ONE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER NOW A MAJOR FILM, STARRING STEVE CARELL AND BAFTA AND GOLDEN GLOBE NOMINATED TIMOTHEE CHALAMET
‘What had happened to my beautiful boy? To our family? What did I do wrong?’
Those are the wrenching questions that haunted every moment of David Sheff’s journey through his son Nic’s addiction to drugs and tentative steps toward recovery.
Before Nic Sheff became addicted to crystal meth, he was a charming boy, joyous and funny, a varsity athlete and honor student adored by his two younger siblings. After meth, he was a trembling wraith who lied, stole, and lived on the streets.
With haunting candour, David Sheff traces the first subtle warning signs: the denial, the 3am phone calls (is it Nic? the police? the hospital?), the attempts at rehab. His preoccupation with Nic became an addiction in itself, and the obsessive worry and stress took a tremendous toll.
But as a journalist, he instinctively researched every avenue of treatment that might save his son and refused to give up on Nic. This story is a first: a teenager's addiction from the parent's point of view – a real-time chronicle of the shocking descent into substance abuse and the gradual emergence into hope.
Beautiful Boy is a fiercely candid memoir that brings immediacy to the emotional rollercoaster of loving a child who seems beyond help.
Read the other side of Nic Sheff's bestselling memoir, Tweak.
Praise for Beautiful Boy:-
'A brilliant, harrowing, heartbreaking, fascinating story, full of beautiful moments and hard-won wisdom. This book will save a lot of lives and heal a lot of hearts'. Anne Lamott
'An important book... moving, timely and startlingly beautiful.' Richard Branson
Expanding on his New York Times Magazine article, Sheff chronicles his son's downward spiral into addiction and the impact on him and his family. A bright, capable teenager, Nic began trying mind- and mood-altering substances when he was 17. In months, use became abuse, then abuse became addiction. By the time Sheff knew of his son's condition, Nic was strung out on meth, the highly potent stimulant. While his son struggles to get clean, his second wife and two younger children are pulled helplessly into the drama. Sheff, as the parent of an addict, cycles through denial and acceptance and resistance. The author was already a journalist of considerable standing when this painful story began to unfold, and his impulse for detail serves him personally as well as professionally: there are hard, solid facts about meth and the kinds of havoc it wreaks on individuals, families and communities both urban and rural. His journey is long and harrowing, but Sheff does not spare himself or anyone else from keen professional scrutiny any more than he was himself spared the pains and joys of watching a loved one struggling with addiction and recovery. Real recovery creates and can itself be its own reward; this is an honest, hopeful book, coming at a propitious moment in the meth epidemic.