cover image Drinking Games: A Memoir

Drinking Games: A Memoir

Sarah Levy. St. Martin’s, $28.99 (288p) ISBN 978-1-250-28058-9

“At twenty-eight, I looked like I had it all together,” Levy writes about her destructive relationship with alcohol in her bracing debut. A 16-year-old Levy experienced her first blackout at a house party in suburban New Jersey, which she recalls as “shameful” but also “a bit thrilling.” After a newly single Levy moved to New York City at 22, alcohol was a fixture in her life (“I came to view vodka as an extension of my new personality”), and though the frequency of Levy’s blackouts increased, she didn’t think she had a “real” problem until the nearly 30-year-old author woke up in bed next to her boss’s best friend with no memory of how she’d gotten there. The author’s insightful account of her path to sobriety takes in the full sweep of her experience, from discovering in recovery meetings a sense of community that wasn’t contingent on her job title, to concluding that there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to dealing with addiction: “Twelve-step programs are not the only way to get sober.” Though the narrative can be repetitive, it nevertheless offers equal measures of introspection and hope: “Every day I wake up is an opportunity to start again.” This emotional excavation will inspire anyone navigating addiction. (Jan.)