Regular readers of this blog will know that I am obsessed by books on alcohol, alcoholism, quitting alcohol, being sober etc etc.
If I'm wrestling with the wine witch and can't stop thinking about drinking, I find that a handy trick is to indulge myself and read about it, rather than actually doing it.
Lindsay suggested a post on all the books I recommend reading, so here it is.
I'll keep posting links back to this one, so please add your own comments on any of the recommendations at any point (feel free to add negative ones as well as positive ones!), and do suggest any books that I've missed!
Books for the just-thinking-about-being-sober
I suggest to everyone who has just embarked on the sobercoaster that, before they do anything else, they read Kick the Drink, Easily by Jason Vale. There is a very similar Alan Carr book, but Jason's is, in my view, a bit more accessible.
Jason uses powerful argument, and a hell of a lot of repetition, to begin to break down the brainwashing we've all been subjected to that tells us that life without booze will be hell, and not worth living. He helps you to begin your sober journey with a sense of excitement and anticipation rather than doom and gloom.
Then I think it's a good idea to read some memoirs, so you know what you're letting yourself in for!
My favourites are:
Mrs D is Going Without by Lotta Dann.
Lotta is a boozy, New Zealand housewife who quits the booze, starts a blog and changes her life. It's a light, funny, uplifting memoir - you'll love it.
Sober is the New Black by Rachel Black
If you want to know how life without booze differs from life with it, then this is the one for you. Rachel juxtaposes 'then' and 'nows' throughout her book so you get an honest, heart warming view of the transformative effects of going sober.
Rachel's just released a new book too, looking at the journey further down the line, and how life keeps evolving. It's called The Secret to Being Fashionably Sober and Fabulous, which I'm currently reading!
The Sober Revolution by Lucy Rocca and Sarah Turner
This is the story of Lucy, the founder of Soberistas. But it also includes stories of other 'problem drinkers' and looks at the different reasons why we drink, and ways in which we drink. It's where I first discovered the term 'maintenance drinker' which is what I am (was).
Books for more established sober people
When you hit 'The Wall' and start getting a bit more introspective (why me? How did I get here? What's life all about anyway? Aaarrrggghhhh!) then you might want to read something a bit deeper, a tad more melancholy, and more analytical.
My two big favourites are: Drinking. A Love Story by Caroline Knapp and Drink by Ann Dowsett Johnston
Both these ladies are beautiful, lyrical, hugely intelligent writers and their books will make you think, laugh and cry. Wait until you're brave enough....
And then, if like me you are so obsessed that you even like your fiction to feature a good old low bottom alkie, then read Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins and Rachel's Holiday by Marain Keyes. The first is a great, page turning whodunit that everyone's been talking about, and the second is a classic laugh and cry romp by the Queen of chick-lit.
Please, please add your own views and recommendations for all the newly sober (plus those of us who are constantly after more good stuff to read) below!
Thanks, and happy weekend!