Crank by Ellen Hopkins
(Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2013, 576 pages)
Kristina, a 17-year-old high school student, goes to visit her father over the summer, which becomes her introduction to crystal meth and the beginning of a downhill spiral into drug abuse and addiction. When she returns home, she continues to find people who help feed her addiction to the drug she describes as an octopus squeezing its tentacles tightly around her.
Crank, the story of the consequences of drug addiction, is based on the true story of author Ellen Hopkins’ daughter who eventually ended up in prison for crimes related to her drug abuse. I listened to the audio version of Crank, brilliantly read by Laura Flanagan. The print version of the book (as in all of Hopkins’ books I’ve seen) offers a visually interesting presentation of words in various stanzas and shapes as in poetry. Hopkins’ rhythmic writing might even be considered a combination of poetry and prose. Crank is the first book of three in a trilogy, and it will be interesting to see how Kristina’s story unfolds in sequels Glass and Fallout.