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Publishers WeeklyStarred Review.
Until he bottomed out and joined up as a last-ditch effort, Adams thought of Alcoholics Anonymous (like many pre-treatment addicts) as a repository for losers or the weak. In this touching, semi-irreverent look at a global fellowship at once transparent and mysterious, Adams lays out the "12 Steps" for readers as he chronicles his own introduction to the program. The distinguishing characteristic of this memoir is Adams's skepticism and willingness to analyze the process, maintaining enough distance to translate the story for non-members while holding dear his conviction in AA's power to heal (in her foreword, Mel B. notes that "one of AA's unwritten rules... is that one should utilize the program rather than analyze it"). Adams includes a smattering of the organization's history and personal revelations, plenty of stories and much translation from AA jargon. Adams maintains a welcoming balance of candor and gallows humor with helpful explication and unflinching awareness of the life-and-death stakes, making this an eye-opening and encouraging read for those who need help with addiction, their own or a loved one's.
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