Review: Why You Drink and How To Stop: Journey To Freedom

Cover Art “I do believe that instead of getting lost in the ‘why’ you are an alcoholic, it’s far more important to figure out what you are going to do about it.” – Veronica Valli, Why you drink and How to stop: Journey to freedom

Addictions therapist and recovered alcoholic Veronica Valli has written, in words from the heart, a solid, practical resource not only for those who have or think they might have a drinking problem, but also for those who have a friend or loved one who may. I know a few addiction counselors who would be better for reading it, too.

Well organized and easy to read, she covers a great deal of ground, from alcoholic behaviors, denial and unmanageability to finding help, self-discovery, relationships and co-dependance, and much more. The section on overcoming the possible roadblocks of past spiritual and religious beliefs is as direct and to the point as it is sensitive and enlightened. Not an easy feat considering that topic.

The three main sections of the book are:

  1. ALCOHOLISM – What it is (and isn’t).
  2. THE PROBLEM – Veronica nails the problem, including what she believes and I agree is “The World’s Best Kept Secret” concerning recovery. (Sorry, my lips are sealed. :))
  3. THE SOLUTION – An in-depth discussion from beginning the journey to eventually living your authentic self.

The book is sprinkled throughout with illustrative narratives from other recovered alcoholics and case studies from her counseling practice. It should prove an inspiration to anyone affected by alcoholism or other addiction. I wholeheartedly recommend it.

Book Review “Between Drinks”

Full title: Between Drinks: Escape The Routine, Take Control, and Join The Clear Thinkers

In this amazing little book, author David Downie writes of his experience with setting down the drink for a predetermined time as “an experiment,” and discovering a richer, more meaningful life because of it.

I was skeptical about (what I thought was) his premise when I received the request to write a review and more so when I started reading the author’s drinking history, a history that includes both a blog and a book celebrating beer and the merits of the culture surrounding it.

The simple fact is David Downie has distilled the essence of the 12 Steps and packaged it for us here. I would recommend this book to anyone, with the “true-blue alcoholic” as a major exception, as the author himself points out.

He delivers pints of wisdom liberally sparkled with humor throughout. Included are vivid descriptions of his life as a drinker, as well as what his life has become after the experiment. Along way, he offers general actions anyone who wishes can try for their own experiment with life between drinks.

If this book had been available thirty-some years ago, it likely would have saved me and everyone else in my life a lot of heartache. Five stars and extra kudos for a book well done.

Book Cover Image


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    Book Review “Soul Recovery”

    Full title: Soul Recovery: 12 Keys to Healing Addiction . . . and 12 Steps for the Rest of Us–a Path to Wholeness, Serenity, and Success

    Ester Nicholson relates her personal story of recovery from addiction with brutal honesty and a clear message of hope. Her program of healing is solid, and could easily be life enhancing, if not life saving, for anyone who wishes to accept a New Thought style of spirituality.

    Since everything in the book that is “beyond the 12 steps” concerns that specific style of spirituality, there is little help “for the rest of us.” Still, the above strengths rate a three-star rating for an otherwise one-star book.

    Photo of Book Cover

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