Top positive review
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This isn't a biography or a self help book..it's a reality check
on September 19, 2013
This book is a hard one to review because it reads like a self help book but I picked up more of a self realization for Nick in the pages of the book. He talks a lot about his drug and alcohol history and the steps he had to take to overcome it and while none of it was new information, it was interesting to read it from the perspective of the addict rather than some "expert" on the issue. While I personally have never had a drug or alcohol addiction, the majority of my family has so it's easy to understand what he is speaking about. Though I find it interesting that while he does delve into the issues he has with his family, and accepts partial responsibility for those issues, he doesn't clarify the role his drug and alcohol abuse played in the strained relationships with his family. In my experience, the addict often doesn't realize the toll that their addiction takes on those around them. When the nosedives happen, it's always because of something someone else has done or a perceived wrong done to them. Nick does acknowledge that he was the one ultimately responsible for his actions and the unfortunate outcome.
Throughout the book, I felt that Nick was being too hard on himself. We are always our worst critics but Nick needs to take a step back and realize that all these things that he thought was so horrible, really weren't. For example, he speaks of the movie he did a while back, Sleepy Hollow, and how horrible his performance in it was. The movie itself certainly wasn't A level material but I liked it. In fact, we have it on DVD and my kids watch it all the time. He writes about the time period around his solo album, Now or Never, as if he put a piece of garbage on the market. The album itself was actually pretty good though I would agree with his opinion that his promotion for the album wasn't his highest point. We went to see him on the Wayne Brady show during that time and you could tell he was burning his candle at both ends. Though, in his defense, he still performed well.
I can't claim that I read every single word. As a non-addict, I did skim through a bit of the addiction information as it didn't really pertain to me. However, what I did like was the fact that Nick not only presented his drug and alcohol history honestly and brutally, he also backed up a lot of the assertions he was making about his process with legitimate research and facts. So many celebrities write these types of books like they are an expert and fans eat it up. Nick didn't do that. He wrote about the physical, mental, and emotional ailments that his substance abuse caused and he gave the reader the reason why. I was especially impressed with the valuable information he gave concerning mixing difference substances which then combine to create a third substance. A lot of young people have died because they didn't understand the dangers of mixing substances.
At the end of Nick's book, he has a ton of resources for anybody going through the same type of issues he has. Wow, that made the book for me. Rather than doing the usual celebrity, "I am a survivor!" crap, he gave his readers a legitimate source for help. I applaud Nick for making sure that he provided a starting point for someone to get help.
I can see this book being purchased mainly by his fans but it would be nice if it could reach a larger audience. I am the same age as Nick and he is correct when he writes that our generation is one of the most substance addicted. The majority of my friends are either addicted, recovering, or dead. A book like this, written by someone in our age group would be an asset to a lot of the people going through the cycle of addiction.
Overall, yes, it is a good book. He doesn't spend the pages whining about what has happened to him but rather what he has done to stop playing the martyr. He clearly identifies his responsibility in what has happened in his life and the importance of getting over it, for lack of a better term. If what you are looking for is the inside story of BSB then you are going to be sadly disappointed but if you legitimately care about Nick and what he is trying to achieve in his life, then you will appreciate this book.