Go Ask Alice is a 1971 book about the life of a troubled teenage miss. The book continues its claim to be the existent journal of an anon. teenage miss who became addicted to drugs. Beatrice Sparks is listed as the writer of the book by the U. S. Copyright Office. The novel. whose rubric was taken from a line in the Grace Slick. penned Jefferson Airplane vocal “White Rabbit” . “go ask Alice/when she’s 10 pess tall” . is presented as an anti-drug testimony. The memoirist’s name is ne’er given in the book. Disclosures about the book’s beginning have been a cause of uncertainty as to its genuineness and factual histories. and the publishing houses have listed it as a work of fiction since at least the mid-late 1980s. Although it is still published under the byline “Anonymous” . it is mostly or entirely the work of its purported editor. Beatrice Sparks. Some of the yearss and day of the months referenced in the book put the timeline from 1968 until 1970. Its major subjects would be trouble of communicating and jobs of adolescent individuality. It is written a series of events in the signifier of multiple diary entries.

Summary of Content

September 18th- December 25th

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Alice explains that she bought herself a diary in high liquors. after being asked out by a cat she liked. She believed she eventually had beautiful ideas to shear with herself through composing. Following the following twenty-four hours. he rejects her. Alice is miserably insecure and admirations why people ever seem to ache her feelings.

Dayss travel by and her 15th base on ballss. and her ennui with life is interrupted merely by weight addition and her attendant self-hatred. She subsequently learns that her male parent has accepted a teaching place at a different college and the household has to travel at the start of the New Year.

Over the clip Alice’s female parent has taken noticed of her irregular eating wonts and forces her to eat. She so starts to reject her mother’s attention and admirations if she could do herself throw up after eating. As clip passes Alice writes that she is largely herself with her dairy. and fears the loss of her individuality seeking to suit in with everyone else.

Throughout this clip she displays a crisp sense of intelligence and consciousness of her emotions and recalls many observations as a well as her feelings. She refers to her diary as a individual. confiding in it and inquiring it to assist her proctor her weight-loss program as if it were a close friend. This so is one of the major subjects in Go Ask Alice.

January 1st- July 14th

Alice writes about her exhilaration for the family’s large move. but confides to her diary her frights of non seting to life in a new topographic point. After settling in. Alice changes her head about the house which she foremost thought was unsympathetic. but now she sees it as beautiful. As clip goes by the remainder of the household has adapted good to their new milieus. but Alice feels like an foreigner. She wonders how. in a household of surpassing people. she ever manages to experience distant from others. With the passing of clip. Alice hasn’t made any friends and has gained weight once more.

Throughout this clip. her approached grows more and more unattractive and she feels like a societal castaway and is frustrated with everyone and everything around her. She besides talks about her new friend she meets named Greata ; who she feels is merely as unattractive and awkward as her. Along with Greta. she talks about Beth a Judaic miss who she meets that lives down the block. She finds that she can speak to Beth about anything ; after showing that she and her female parent can no longer speak like they use to.

She continues to compose as he summer has started and programs to pass the summer with her grandparents. While there she is invited to a party where she is introduced to a game which includes indiscriminately dripping LSD in several sodium carbonate bottles which she becomes the receiver of. After she became cognizant of the wake she happy for the experience but ne’er wants to make drugs once more. Throughout this clip. she compares her ocean trip into the new universe of drugs to Alice in Wonderland. Alice goes through a series of societal alterations in with in the first half of the twelvemonth. and her instability helps explicate her wonder for drugs. She sought safety in composing but drugs provide an easier entree into her antic universe. where she feels a relationship with people and the things around her.

July 20th- September 10th

She goes on a day of the month with Bill and experiments with more drugs. She feels like a complete new individual. better about herself and she loves traveling out. While at her grandparents her gramps had a mini bosom onslaught. She strays off from her friends in the attempts in helping her grandma with her gramps. Later she subsumes to the force per unit area of her friends and goes out to a party at Bills house where she takes acid. She besides loses her virginity to him while on acid ; which she expressed it as being another brilliant. freaky manner out. portion of her doped escapades.

Now. she looks for person to speak to about drugs but she doesn’t know who to inquire. Trying to screen out her many feelings she starts to take sleeping pills which she loves. Drugs makes Alice feel like the individual she ne’er was before. Under the influence of velocity. she says. she feels like a member of a “different. improved. perfected species” . What Alice got from the drugs was a sense of being loved for who she truly is. by others around her who is on drugs. September 12th-November 22nd

Alice in now back place where she meets a friend name Chris and is given a occupation working with her are a local food market shop. She continues to start pills whenever she gets tired or hungry. She is so introduced to marijuana and is now utilizing every bit good as selling it.

She so finds herself in what will turn out to be a bosom interrupting treachery ; when she finds out the truth about Richie’s secret matter with Ted. As clip base on balls. Chris and Alice decides to fly San Francisco and vows to turn Richie in and corsets sober with Chris. She gets to San Francisco where she and Chris both find occupations to back up themselves. She besides matures within this clip frame. larning about her gender. However. she has non hold sex sober yet. Beneath Alice’s psychedelic escapades is her go oning desire to happen person with place she can hold the same unfastened. loving relationship she one time had with her household. Her shifting emotions refering her household were the major cause for her going. yet she longs for them in San Francisco.

November 23rd- End of Diary One

Alice has now passed through her by trail by fire. and she feels like an grownup from the manner others treat her as an person. She declares “I am person: but her existent ripening is non from how others respond to her. but from wise contemplations on what it means to survivors the troubled times of adolescence.

She is non wholly ready to accept her yesteryear. she wants to atone for her wickednesss. but she besides wishes she could force her incubuss in the dorsum of her head. Alice eventually additions adequate absolute experience and converse more candidly with other blowouts in this subdivision to understand better what has caused her diminution. Alice diagnoses her existent job when. happy about her father’s love for her. she wishes she could merely love herself. If she could make this. she would care less about arising or fulfilling her parents and alternatively concentrate on her ain. separate desires. Throughout this subdivision she develops a belief of Christian salvation on her ain when it occurs to her that agony may hold been worthwhile. as she can now understand and be more understanding of people. Her determinations to h aid others has deep spiritual grounds. and she ends the first journal.

Diary 2 April 6th-May 21st

Alice matures profoundly in this subdivision. spread outing her sensitiveness. Her increasing desire to go a counsel advocate shows. She has now find an individuality that will someday suite her. and while she is still in hurting at times. she is already acquiring better at pass oning with others and basking a life with sobriety. She and her parents both now treat each other with regard and concern. Her gramps dies and she is holding a difficult clip covering with the state of affairs at this point. More awful to Alice is her true weakness hostel her flash back episode and the ensuing fright that she may lose her head.

May 22nd Updated July

Alice writes in her dateless journal from a infirmary. She is diffident how she has ended up here and can merely believe of the worms she thinks are eating her alive. She has seemingly been seize with teething her fingers down to the bone ; she relates this to the decease of her gramps. Alice reveals that an inadvertent dosage of acid is the cause of her dislocation. Her female parent and male parent believe that person else “tripped” Alice without her cognizing it. she finds out she is being sent to an insane refuge. Her male parent tells her that when her instance was brought before a juvenile tribunal. Jan and another miss testified that Alice had still been on drugs and was selling them. She registers at the State Mental Hospital. She is frightened by the ugly edifice and by the inmates. whom she feels are different from her. Despite the mental horrors Alice endures. her head stays slightly resilient and her diary becomes her true sanctuary. She is sent off to the refuge to acquire aid.

July 27th Epilogue

Alice attempts to pray but feels the words are false and meaningless. She yearns for decease. She starts traveling to school at the Youth Center. which is a alleviation compared to her room. Life in the refuge is run outing her in all ways. as it has already done for Babbie. She listens to other childs in a group therapy session. which she finds helpful. Alice’s female parent and male parent visit. Another visit from Alice’s parents brings a long missive from Joel. Her male parent studies that Jan has retracted her statement. and they’re seeking to acquire the other miss to make the same. in which instance Alice will be let out shortly. Alice returns place and is happy to be with her household.

At place. Alice is invited to travel swimming by Fawn. a “straight” child. Alice is insecure around Fawn and her friends. even though they seem to wish her. She gives her male parent a jumper and a verse form by her for his birthday. Joel surprises her by demoing up and kisses her on the lips in forepart of her household. Alice is worried about get downing school once more but feels stronger with the support of her new friends and Joel. She remarks that she no longer needs a journal. for she now has people in her life with whom she can pass on.

In the epilogue. we are told that Alice died three hebdomads subsequently of an overdose—whether it was premeditated or inadvertent remains unclear—and that she was one of 1000s of drug deceases that twelvemonth.

Part II Memoir Review

Go Ask Alice was originally promoted as nonfiction and was published under the byline “Anonymous. ” However. non long after its publication. Beatrice Sparks. a psychologist. began doing media visual aspects showing herself as the book’s editor. The memoirist’s name is ne’er revealed in the book. Alice is non the protagonist’s name. A miss named Alice is mentioned briefly in one entry during the diarist’s stay in Coos Bay. Beaver state ; she is an addict whom the diary keeper briefly meets on the street. Observers frequently refer to the diary keeper as “Alice” in mistake. or for the interest of convenience. In the ABC Movie of the Week movie version of Go Ask Alice. broadcast 24 January 1973. the supporter is named Alice.

Go Ask Alice is an honorable portraiture of the life of a drug nut. Originally published in 1971. the book provides an empathic description of one 15-year-old girl’s descent into a life of drugs that still resonates in today’s adolescent civilization. The book’s strength lies in the comprehensiveness of the first-person history. from her early yearss as an guiltless young person whose chief concerns were popularity and image to her life on the street. where the lone thing she worried about was where she would acquire her following hole. It besides inside informations her hard. acclivitous conflict back to soberness. Another strength of this novel is that it verbalizes feelings that most teens experience.

For illustration. Alice provinces. “I don’t need the slumber every bit much as I need the flight. The one weakness/caution for Go Ask Alice is that the book is in writing in item. It includes descriptions of her sexual experiences and the esthesiss of each drug. and her off-balance ramblings while on different drugs. This is non appropriate for immature readers. I would direct this book to teens and grownups. I think it should be required reading in high schools. Since this is about a adolescent fighting with dependence and the societal force per unit areas of the drug universe. it is a existent eye-opener to anyone who is already fighting and for those who may be confronted with the option to utilize.


This book had many great reappraisals. and I would hold that this is an outstanding book. In fact. I believe it is one of the best immature grownup novels I have of all time read. There is much guess over whether the journals are fictional or true ; nevertheless. I didn’t experience that affected how I felt after reading it. The histories in this diary seem so existent and good written. Many would reason that a 15 twelvemonth old miss couldn’t muster such gifted composings. On the contrary. the late 60’s early 70’s were a really different clip. Although parents appeared stricter in this clip. it seemed Torahs and drugs were much freer. It is easy to conceive of all of the runaway teens and preteens prostituting themselves. utilizing drugs. and kiping in Parkss and on curbs—and most of them didn’t attention where they wound up!

This isn’t as common today. but it still happens. we merely don’t hear as much about it. I think the writer of the journal did a great occupation capturing the positive. beautiful feelings of her experiences with drugs. Similarly. the author every bit described the melancholy and loss of individuality associated with drug usage. This novel could alter lives. if non merely associate to them. Overall. a terrorization and well-written history of a immature girls’ put offing narrative from a regular adolescent. to a popular free adolescent. to a adolescent that must be put back together. Future drug users must inquire themself. “Should I seek utilizing? ” Well. travel ask Alice. and she’ll Tell you how to halt from losing your individuality every bit good as saneness.

Plants Cited
“Go Ask Alice A Real Diary PB N ( Paperback ) By ( writer ) Anonymous. ” The Book Depository. N. p. . n. d. Web. 14 Jan. 2013


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