Street Pharm by Allison van Diepen, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Street Pharm
  • Alternative view 1 of Street Pharm
  • Alternative view 2 of Street Pharm

Street Pharm

4.6 42
by Allison van Diepen

View All Available Formats & Editions

A successful teen drug dealer is forced to reexamine it all in this riveting novel, now in trade paperback with a new cover, from the author of Snitch.

Ty Johnson knows survival. The supply game’s in his blood. And now that he’s taken over his pop’s business, Ty’s smarts and skills have earned him some serious street


A successful teen drug dealer is forced to reexamine it all in this riveting novel, now in trade paperback with a new cover, from the author of Snitch.

Ty Johnson knows survival. The supply game’s in his blood. And now that he’s taken over his pop’s business, Ty’s smarts and skills have earned him some serious street cred. But Alyse knows nothing about Ty’s reputation, and he’s determined to keep it that way. She’s too beautiful, too brainy, too straight-laced to ever get involved with someone who deals. As long as Ty walks the line, life’s pretty sweet.

Then one slip—one serious competitor—and things turn ugly fast. Suddenly Ty’s got to rethink his whole strategy. And for the #1 dealer on the streets, strategy is not just about staying ahead. It’s about staying alive.

Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Kevin Beach
This rugged story examines the life of a young drug dealer caught between the banality of school and the world of crime. Ty knows how to survive on the streets. He has had to grow up in a hurry, inheriting his imprisoned father's drug trade. Ty is very good at it and likes the quick and easy money. His mother is clueless, wondering why he is doing so poorly in school. Ty's father expects him to keep the family business going until his release. Life gets really complicated for Ty when he falls for a classmate, an attractive, smart, unwed mother, Alyse. She despises drugs and what they have done to the neighborhood, unaware that her beau is successfully taking the local trade to a higher level. She believes in Ty and pushes him to stay in school and get his diploma. Things heat up when a rival gang moves in to take over. Will Ty become a violent gangster like his dad or start a new life with Alyse? Will he even survive? There is plenty of swearing, violence, and raunchy topics scattered in the dialogue and the action because this book takes a realistic look at life in a dangerous urban neighborhood. The author researched this story while working in a perilous inner-city Brooklyn high school. It is an eye-opening account of a nice kid who is caught between two worlds and has to make some tough decisions. It also conveys a poignant message for reluctant readers.
School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up-Set in Brooklyn, this urban drama novel depicts Ty Johnson's life as a 17-year-old African-American drug dealer. Taking over his father's territory seemed to be "all that" to Ty when he was younger, but now he realizes that there is more to life-mainly forming a relationship with Alyse, a single mother and his classmate at the local continuation high school. Struggling to hold onto the pieces of his father's business, he faces competition from out of town and things get serious. Neither Alyse nor his mother knows what sort of "work" Ty does until he ends up in the hospital after a drive-by shooting. Then the teen leaves school completely and moves out of his mother's apartment. He must decide who he is as his life is threatened and he loses the people closest to him. Easy to read and written in street slang including drug references and profanity, this debut novel will appeal to reluctant readers.-Corinda J. Humphrey, Los Angeles Public Library Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

Simon Pulse
Publication date:
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
5.00(w) x 7.00(h) x 0.80(d)
HL500L (what's this?)
Age Range:
14 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

Street Pharm

  • What are you gonna be when you grow up?” That’s what most kids got asked.

    Not me.

    Mom always asked me what I wasn’t gonna be, and you know what she wanted me to say?

    A dealer, stealer, free-wheeler, player, hater, a downright dog—that’s what my dad was.

    When I came home from school, Mom was on the couch watching Dr. Phil. As usual.

    “How was school, baby?”

    “Good.” No way I was gonna tell her I got kicked out. Really ass-to-the-curb kicked out this time. Starting tomorrow, I was supposed to show up at some alternative school.

    “You working hard?”

    “Yeah.” Sweet, clueless Mom never noticed that I hadn’t carried a book bag since the ninth grade.

    “There’s beef patties in the oven.”

    I checked the clock: 3:37 p.m. She’d be getting up from the sofa in about three minutes, getting ready for fifteen, and out the door in twenty.

    When the commercial came on, Mom went to her room. I attacked the patties, only stopping to add more ketchup. A few minutes later, she came back into the kitchen in her grocery store uniform, her name tag already pinned on like she was proud or something. “You working tonight?” she asked me.

    “Yeah.” I gave up my cheek for a kiss while guzzling o.j., and she threw on her coat and hurried out the door.

    Mom thought I worked at the Flatbush Sports Club on Atlantic Avenue. I ain’t worked there a day in my life—but the manager owed me. He was one of my customers.

    Time to get down to this brother’s real bread-and-butter.

    I took out my cell and speed-dialed Sonny.

    “Ty! What the fuck’s going on? Why’d you turn off your cell?”

    “Mind your business. What’s going on?”

    “I need your help, son. Tonight we got us some deliveries.”

    “Already got some.”

    “Well, I got more for you.”

    “Go on.”

    I wrote the stuff in my phone.

    “Hold up,” I said, “who’s this Schultz guy?”

    “A new customer I met last week. Told him we was getting a shipment with the hottest shit this side of Bogotá. He gonna drop five Gs!”

    “You ain’t kidding. How’d he find out about us?”

    “In the fucking yellow pages.”

    “Seriously, Sonny, who told him?”

    “Who? Shit, like he was gonna tell me! What, you think his friend wants a finder’s fee or something?”

    “Listen, if you so confident about him, you make the delivery.”

    “Can’t, I promised Desarae we’d see a late movie. Schultz wants the stuff at ten.”

    “I’m not making this delivery unless you gimme some reason to think he ain’t a cop.”

    “Ty, this guy ain’t 5-0. Don’t you think I can sniff out a cop by now?”

    “I ain’t risking my neck on your sense of smell, Sonny. Tell Michael Brown to make the delivery.”

    Michael Brown.

    That little brother’d win the award for the most eager young hustler in Flatbush.

    Quick, reliable.

    Fourteen years old.

    “A’ight, I’ll tell Michael,” Sonny said. “He can drop some stuff off at the Wilkes place too.”

    That was what I liked about Sonny. He talked the shit, but when push came to shove, he always backed down. He knew the game was in my blood.

  • Meet the Author

    Allison van Diepen is the author of Street Pharm, Snitch, Raven, and Takedown. She teaches at an alternative high school in Ottawa, Canada. Visit her at

    Customer Reviews

    Average Review:

    Write a Review

    and post it to your social network


    Most Helpful Customer Reviews

    See all customer reviews >