Books

Recovery-Related Books

Talk To An Addiction CounselorThere have been thousands of excellent informational books written that pertain to recovery from alcoholism, addiction, substance abuse, and codependency. Here you will find some that we consider exceptionally informative, educational and inspiring pertaining to recovery and self-help. Finding inner-peace as we work toward recovery from addiction and codependency can be difficult at times; well written informative and inspirational books like the ones listed below can help you on your journey to self-awareness and recovery.

The Dance of Wounded Souls

The Dance of Wounded Souls
Author: Robert Burney

A Cosmic Perspective of Codependence and the Human Condition

This book is a persuasive take on the new age by a Twelve Step enthusiast. This inspirational book can lead to a life-changing Spiritual Awakening as it reminds you of who you truly are, why you are here, and why you are here at this special time in human history.

Book Reviews:

  1. If you are soul searching this is another one of those good books to help you look inside and see the real you.
  2. I have listened to this incredible audio book. I know that my journey in recovery will not be the same again. The information presented in Robert Burney’s book, is what EVERY soul needs to hear – it is the Truth. It certainly awakens me to MY Truth. I highly recommend this to anyone, who is seeking to grow and heal; who is in trouble of any sort, or who is just seeking to explore their spiritual origins. If I had the money, I would buy this 3-CD set for everyone I love…

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The Dance of Wounded Souls

Facing Codependence

Facing Codependence
Author: Pia Melody

For those that are codependent, many times the reasons for this can be traced back to our childhood. There is a wide range of emotional, spiritual, intellectual, physical, and sexual abuses that may contribute to codependency in adulthood. Pia Mellody talks about some of these reasons and offers effective ways to treat codependency. This book will help you get a better understanding of what codependency is and where it may have originated from.

Pia Mellody creates a framework for identifying codependent thinking, emotions and behaviour and provides an effective approach to recovery. Mellody sets forth five primary adult symptoms of this crippling condition, then traces their origin to emotional, spiritual, intellectual, physical and sexual abuses that occur in childhood. Central to Mellody’s approach is the concept that the codependent adult’s injured inner child needs healing. Recovery from codependence, therefore, involves clearing up the toxic emotions left over from these painful childhood experiences.

Book Reviews:

  1. A great book to recommend clients, due to its simplicity in explaining concepts complemented with the use of stories. I have recommended it to many of my clients who have greatly benefitted from the book’s profound truths as it pushes them towards introspection and self-awareness.
  2. I think this book is wonderful for all those who are dealing with codependency. I’m going to get the workbook too.

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Facing Codependence

The Language of Letting Go

The Language of Letting Go
Author: Melody Beattie

For those that are codependent, this book of daily meditations and reflections will help you focus on your own self-esteem and acceptance. Reflecting on these encouraging words of wisdom daily by Melody Beattie will inspire you and as you go through the process of recovery. Let Melody guide you through the day as you work toward your recovery and self-care.

Book Reviews:

  1. Excellent for any group, among family members or between friends. Enriching lives one day at a time! Highly recommended!
  2. I love this book. It is a very helpful tool in my Al-Anon recovery process. I will point out though; this book is not Al-Anon approved literature. I personally, highly recommend this book for anyone in recovery or anyone struggling with relationships and life in general.

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The Language of Letting Go

Codependents’ Guide to 12 Steps

Codependents’ Guide to the Twelve Steps
Author: Melody Beattie

This informative book will help those that are codependent to understand Twelve Step Programs like AA as well as many other excellent treatment programs. You will also learn how you can apply these excellent steps toward your own healing. Codependent’s Guide to the Twelve Steps provides you with a directory of these 12 Step programs and shows you how they can help and inspire you concerning your own personal issues.

Book Reviews:

  1. I really love this book. I am still using it and have made a little reminder in the form of a power point.
  2. This book is THA Book…, not even passing chapter 1 it was already for me a major reality check, and eye opener and is giving me many directions to be on my way to be free, find peace and joy. I could not even pass chapter 1 without reading it a second time… this is how deep this book is.

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Codependents’ Guide to 12 Steps

Codependent No More

Codependent No More
Author: Melody Beattie

While reading this excellent classic you will come to realize just what it means to be codependent, how it can start, and how codependency affects not only yourself but others in your life. When you have someone in your life that you love and they’re addicted to alcohol and other drugs, the addict isn’t the only one affected by the addiction; those who love them are too. You will walk away understanding how important it is to take care of yourself and how to stop controlling others in your life.

Is someone else’s problem your problem? If, like so many others, you’ve lost sight of your own life in the drama of tending to someone else’s, you may be codependent–and you may find yourself in this book.

The healing touchstone of millions, this modern classic by one of America’s best-loved and most inspirational authors holds the key to understanding codependency and to unlocking its stultifying hold on your life.

With instructive life stories, personal reflections, exercises, and self-tests, Codependent No More is a simple, straightforward, readable map of the perplexing world of codependency–charting the path to freedom and a lifetime of healing, hope, and happiness.

Book Reviews:

  1. This book is wonderful. It has some great gems of wisdom. This book has helped me and my family and friends.
  2. I highly recommend this book. I am a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist and I recommend this book to people that come to see me for relationship issues.

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Codependent No More

Ishmael

Ishmael
Author: Daniel Quinn

Ishmael is a very extra-ordinary novel. It’s about a man and a gorilla as they embark on an intellectual adventure. This intellectual adventure redefines what it means to be human. This story addresses a much broader issue of spirituality from an intellectual viewpoint.

The narrator of this extraordinary tale is a man in search for truth. He answers an ad in a local newspaper from a teacher looking for serious pupils, only to find himself alone in an abandoned office with a full-grown gorilla who is nibbling delicately on a slender branch. “You are the teacher?” he asks incredulously. “I am the teacher,” the gorilla replies. Ishmael is a creature of immense wisdom and he has a story to tell, one that no other human being has ever heard. It is a story that extends backward and forward over the lifespan of the earth from the birth of time to a future there is still time to save. Like all great teachers, Ishmael refuses to make the lesson easy; he demands the final illumination to come from within ourselves. Is it man’s destiny to rule the world? Or is it a higher destiny possible for him—one more wonderful than he has ever imagined?

Book Reviews:

  1. You will go on an amazing journey. This is certainly worth sharing with those you love and reading again (out loud).
  2. Truly inspiring, thought provoking text. I’ve had a few friends read it. This book had ideas and knowledge I’ve never even heard suggested before. I recommend to everybody (and basically already have)!!!

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Ishmael

Confessions of a Closed Male

Confessions of a Closed Male
Author: Kenneth Byrd Chance

Kenneth Chance wrote this inspiring book about one man’s empowering spiritual journey. A woman reading this book will walk away with a much better understanding of how a man thinks and feels. Confessions of a Closed Male will send a message of hope to men spiritually and a much better understanding for women regarding men’s feelings and male issues.

An extra-marital affair turns Erics world upside-down. Confused at the tornado of emotions and feelings he begins to fix his life in typical male-fashion. What he discovers is there are no quick-fixes and he must work through the wreckage his ruthlessness has created at home and at work.

Vida shows Eric the role dreams play in giving guidance. He also takes Eric back in time to see the cost of living in the illusion of the male myth. Eric discovers why most men are closed to their feelings and unable to share themselves intimately with the ones they love most.

Erics bottoming-out process takes him through recovery from an addictive disease that robs him of his true nature. He discovers spiritual principles that he incorporates into his life to transform him from misery and despair to happiness and joy.

Any woman whose husband has had an affair will want to read this book. Men who have found themselves in the endless cycle of more-is-better will find a solution in these pages.

Book Reviews:

  1. For anyone feeling alone on the path, this is a good choice. I thoroughly enjoyed it.
  2. A Definite page turner! I couldn’t put it down. This is a book everyone should read to further their growth in all areas of life. I give it 5 stars!

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Confessions of a Closed Male

Slowing Down – Speed of Life

Slowing Down to the Speed of Life
Author: Richard Carlson & Joseph Bailey

In this day and age, life is stressful, fast-paced, and it feels like you’re on a rollercoaster sometimes. This book will help you to create a more peaceful, calmer and simpler life from the inside out. Slowing Down to the Speed of Life will help you change your attitude during stressful situations creating a happier and healthier you.

Feel like you’re always rushing but never catching up?Are you doing more, but enjoying it less? The frantic pace and pressure of modern life can take a serious toll on your happiness and your health’but there is one way to step off the treadmill without giving up your career or your activities. The answer lies not in sacrificing your work productivity or your lifestyle but rather in changing your attitudes. By using simple exercises to slow down your mind and focus on the present moment, you can actually achieve greater productivity and creativity-all while maintaining a calmer, healthier state of mind.

Book Reviews:

  1. These concepts have literally saved my life, and any book by Richard Carlson is definitely worth the time and money spent.
  2. I highly recommend this wonderful book!

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Slowing Down – Speed of Life

The Road Less Travelled

The Road Less Traveled
Author: M. Scott Peck, MD

This national bestseller has stood the test of time for over 20 years. This book by M. Scott Peck, MD will truly enlighten you emotionally and spiritually. This true modern classic offers a beautiful and understandable approach to spirituality and has made a difference in many readers’ lives. The Road Less Traveled will bring you closer to self-awareness, self-acceptance, and spiritual enlightenment and growth.

Book Reviews:

  1. I bought it on CD as I travel a lot. Had to listen to it twice. There was so much to grasp. A great book
  2. This is the best self-help, spirituality, relationship and how to live your life book ever. Buy immediately.

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The Road Less Travelled

Living Sober

Living Sober
Author: AA World Services, Inc.

Living Sober is not to be confused with AA’s 12 Steps and AA’s 12 Traditions. Here you will find helpful methods to use for living without drinking. This is an excellent informative book that gives useful advice for STAYING sober. Living Sober is another one of Alcoholics Anonymous classics that will help you stay in control.

Book Reviews:

  1. This is the best book I’ve read on understanding alcoholism and the process of recovery.
  2. I know that this is by far the most useful book I’ve read for people who are pretty sure their drinking is not normal, but are still afraid to seek help. I can’t recommend it highly enough.

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Living Sober

Twelve Steps and Traditions

Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions
Author: AA World Services, Inc.

An Interpretive Commentary on the AA Program

This book is the companion to Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) Big Book. Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions are used by A.A. members around the world. There are principles that an AA member goes by when working toward recovery. This book gives you an understanding of how the 12 Steps and the 12 Traditions relate to each other within the AA program and recovery. This book is also referred to as a 12×12 and it has saved many lives.

Book Reviews:

  1. The steps in this book work, if you do what they suggest! A Power greater than yourself, is all its suggesting and in some cases you can use ‘the book’ as a Higher Power and NOT get into any Religious Dispute. Get it, Read it, Use it.
  2. This is a terrific book whether or not you consider yourself to be an alcoholic. It’s a great guide on how to live your life productively and peacefully. In terms of building relationships with others, this beats most self-help books out there. I wish I’d read it when I was in college instead of midlife. Better late than never.

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Twelve Steps and Traditions

Under the Volcano

Under the Volcano
Author: Malcolm Lowry

This true compelling modern novel classic was written by Malcolm Lowry. This book is about Geoffrey Firmin who is a former British consul and he has let drinking overshadow his life. Malcolm documents an entire lifetime in the course of one day. You will get a painfully realistic look at alcoholism at its lowest level throughout the context of this fascinating and compelling story.

Geoffrey Firmin, a former British consul, has come to Quauhnahuac, Mexico. Here the consul’s debilitating malaise is drinking, and activity that has overshadowed his life. Under the Volcano is set during the most fateful day of the consul’s life–the Day of the Dead, 1938. His wife, Yvonne, arrives in Quauhnahuac to rescue him and their failing marriage, inspired by a vision of life together away from Mexico and the circumstances that have driven their relationship to the brink of collapse. Yvonne’s mission is to save the consul is further complicated by the presence of Hugh, the consul’s half-brother, and Jacques, a childhood friend. The events of this one day unfold against a backdrop unforgettable for its evocation of a Mexico at once magical and diabolical.

Book Reviews:

  1. Whether you want to discover or revisit this masterpiece of literature, I highly recommend this recording well presented in a box of 14 CDs.
  2. This is probably the best book I have ever read and I have been reading for over 40 years.

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Under the Volcano

Addiction and How to Get Free

The Hidden Addiction and How to Get Free
Author: Janice Phelps, MD & Alan Nourse, MD

The authors of this book are both medical doctors and they believe that many people are addicted to certain drugs and substances due a genetic predisposition they are born with. They believe that these addictions are due to a genetic flaw in the body. This argument of both Janice Phelps MD and Alan Nourse MD puts an interesting twist on the disease model of addiction.

Book Reviews:

  1. The outstanding book here is a must for every person who is addicted to caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, sugar, marijuana, antidepressants, sleeping pills, and much more.
  2. You’ll be glad you read this book, and like me you will recommend it to countless people.

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Addiction and How to Get Free

A Path Through the 12 Steps

A Gentle Path Through the Twelve Steps
Author: Patrick Carnes, PhD

This is a helpful workbook that will help those recovering from addiction. This unique workbook includes special forms and exercises that will help those recovering to integrate the Twelve Steps into every area of their life. While working Steps many times there is a need to keep notes or jot down feelings. There are generous size margins provided at the top of each page to record thoughts, feelings and insight if needed. This workbook will help you build a foundation in your recovery.

Book Reviews:

  1. I have used this book for almost 12 years. And I recommend it to any one battling any addiction.
  2. Excellent. Great guide and workbook for a thorough passage through the Twelve Steps of Alcohol Anonymous. Highly recommended!

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A Path Through the 12 Steps

Simple Steps

Simple Steps…Costly Choices
Author: Bob Lively

Bob Lively is the author of this book and is also an ordained minister and pastoral counselor. He has taken the 12 Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous and translates into biblical, spiritual and psychological language that can be applied to all addictions. Bob shows you how you can take the wonderful 12 Steps from AA to a further Spiritual Path.

Book Reviews:

  1. This captivating book has done more for me than any book I’ve ever read!
  2. This book is one of the best I’ve seen on 12-Step Recovery.

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Simple Steps

Addiction & Grace

Addiction & Grace
Author: Gerald G. May, MD

This wonderful and brilliant classic is inspiring and offers hope to people that need to find out who they really are. Gerald May is the author of this spiritually enlightening book and he explores the various addictions that affect people’s lives, not just alcohol and drugs. Other addictions many suffer from include intimacy, responsibility, performance, sex, and work. Truly a classic read for anyone.

Here is Gerald May’s brilliant and now classic exploration of the psychology and physiology of addiction. It offers an inspiring and hope-filled vision for those who desire to explore the mystery of who and what they really are. May examines the “processes of attachment” that lead to addiction and describes the relationship between addiction and spiritual awareness. He also details the various addictions from which we can suffer, not only to substances like alcohol and drugs, but to work, sex, performance, responsibility, and intimacy.

Drawing on his experience as a psychiatrist working with the chemically dependent, May emphasizes that addiction represents an attempt to assert complete control over our lives. Addiction and Grace is a compassionate and wise treatment of a topic of major concern in these most addictive of times, one that can provide a critical yet hopeful guide to a place of freedom based on contemplative spirituality.

Book Reviews:

  1. This is an absolutely great book. I see myself as having a lot of addictions I wasn’t even aware of, it certainly opened my eyes. I recommend this book to everyone.
  2. This is a very excellent and potentially transformational book.

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Addiction & Grace

The First 30 Days

Hour To Hour
Author: Shelly Marshall

The First 30 Days

Hour to Hour is a new look at inspiriational meditation books. It consists of a meditation and small prayer for every hour of the day for the first 30 days of recovery from addiction to mind-affecting chemicals. It is based on the language of the 12-step prgrams and is meant to supplement early treatment, self-help, and abstinence. “Hour to Hour” is designed to be carried in the popcket and be read at moments of cravings. We call it the pocket Sponsor.

Hour to Hour is an inspirational meditation book that can fit in your pocket and also includes short prayers. Recovery from mind altering drugs and addiction is hard and the first 30 days can be the hardest. This book contains inspiration on the hour for 30 days to help you on your path to recovery from drug and substance abuse. Hour to Hour is especially helpful during the hard moments when there are cravings to repeat drug use.

Book Reviews:

  1. This is a lovely tool for a person to use who is trying to get clean and sober.

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The First 30 Days

Many Roads One Journey

Many Roads, One Journey
Author: Charlotte Davis Kasl, PhD

Moving Beyond the 12 Steps

Charlotte Kasl is the author of this book and she offers a much broader view for recovery. Everyone is unique and different and she realizes recovery programs don’t always offer everyone what they need. She encourages the readers to find their own voice and their own sources of strength and spirituality to guide them with their healing and recovery. The goal of recovery is the same for most people but the road that takes you there isn’t the same for everyone. It’s important to find what’s right for you.

Book Reviews:

  1. I’m in recovery and loved this book. I’ve been looking for more and this book provided it. Recommend it to all my 12-step friends.
  2. This is one of those rare books that can change your life.

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Many Roads One Journey

Thinking Guide to Sobriety

The Thinking Person’s Guide to Sobriety
Author: Bert Pluyman

This book is an excellent read for anyone who questions their own use of alcohol and worries that they may have a drinking problem. The Thinking Person’s Guide to Sobriety shares the author’s experiences with alcohol addiction as well as other’s stories. This book is full of facts and will answer many of the questions an alcoholic may have when going into recovery. After reading this book many people will examine their own relationships with alcohol.

Book Reviews:

  1. I found this book to be an excellent addition to the AA Big Book. The author isn’t nearly as “dry” or antiquated as the BB, in his writing, and the book is a great, up-to-date read on alcoholism.
  2. I would give this gem 10 stars if I could. It has helped me and two others come to grips with our problems. Delivered through intelligent stories and some astonishing facts and figures that surround alcohol, this is book that must be at the top of the list of anyone who suspects they need to look at their drinking or the recovering alcoholic. Buy it and keep it. Share it with your friends.

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Thinking Guide to Sobriety

Alcoholics Anonymous

Alcoholics Anonymous

The Story of How Many Thousands of Men and Women Have Recovered from Alcoholism.

This is the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous and is a traditional ‘must read’ for those coming into Alcoholics Anonymous (AA). This wonderful Big Book goes into detail teaching you how AA works, it’s also referred to as AA’s Bible. This book is full of personal stories from men and women sharing details of their lives abusing alcohol and other substances and how they have recovered from alcoholism. These stories are sad yet inspiring and uplifting. Thousands of people from every walk of life has benefitted from AA and will continue to do so.

Book Reviews:

  1. This book saved my life, and my marriage.
  2. This is so helpful for anyone who has an addiction, or hurt by someone with an addiction. Any Addiction! I would recommend this book to those who needs structure for the journey of recovery.

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Alcoholics Anonymous

Mister God, This Is Anna

Mister God, This is Anna
Author: Fynn

This book isn’t really geared toward addiction and recovery but it will definitely warm your heart. This true story is about a very special friendship that will definitely make you think and that you won’t soon forget. In a sweet, simple, and beautiful way, Mister God, This is Anna will bring a smile to your face and broaden you spiritually in every way. This story is one you will want to share with someone who may need to be spiritually uplifted.

Book Reviews:

  1. From the outset, let me just say that this book thoroughly captivated me when I read it. I was hooked and I basically fell in love with Anna, as I suspect many other readers have done.
  2. I love this book. I have read it over and over again, and each time I find a little comment or thought of Anna’s that I missed before. Her simple way of understanding “Mister God” is refreshing and thought provoking. I have given this book away to many people and I still keep buying another for myself.

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Mister God, This Is Anna

Peace Is Every Step

Peace is Every Step
Author: Thich Nhat Hanh

The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life

Thich Nhat Hanh teaches us to be aware and mindful of every step we take on a daily basis. He shows us how to keep our consciousness alive in the present moment and how everyday events can bring internal peace to us. He reminds us to slow down, breathe, truly appreciate and be aware and it can change your life. When we change our lives and find inner-peace, we can then change the lives of others around us. Thich Nhat Hanh shows us that there is Peace in every step we take.

In the rush of modern life, we tend to lose touch with the peace that is available in each moment. World-renowned Zen master, spiritual leader, and author Thich Nhat Hanh shows us how to make positive use of the very situations that usually pressure and antagonize us. For him a ringing telephone can be a signal to call us back to our true selves. Dirty dishes, red lights, and traffic jams are spiritual friends on the path to “mindfulness”—the process of keeping our consciousness alive to our present experience and reality. The most profound satisfactions, the deepest feelings of joy and completeness lie as close at hand as our next aware breath and the smile we can form right now.

Book Reviews:

  1. Love this book and bring it out from time to time. Easy to read and very inspirational, touching and insightful.
  2. This is now one of my favorite books ever. It’s simple, engaging and full of everyday wisdoms. After you read this you will re-discover yourself and learn to love again.

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Peace Is Every Step

Cool Water: Alcoholism

Cool Water
Author: William Alexander

Alcoholism, Mindfulness, and Ordinary Recovery

William Alexander teaches us that we can be free from alcoholism as well as any other type of addiction and the answer is right in front of us. Using mindfulness and meditation William teaches us to embrace life in the moment. Cool Water is an inspiring book that teaches alcoholics and others suffering with addiction they can find healing and recovery not tomorrow, but right now in the present moment.

Reviews:

  1. A very special book, indeed. I found this book to be one of the best I’ve ever read on recovery. The author is an eloquent and honest writer, who creates a powerful and poetic guide for simple everyday recovery and living.
  2. I was immediately pulled into this book. Not only does the author share helpful strategies and philosophies pertinent and inspiring for someone struggling with recovery, but he also shares his humanness- his story and struggles- even today. I laughed out loud numerous times while reading this book. I highly recommend this book.

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Cool Water: Alcoholism

The Serenity Principle

The Serenity Principle
Author: Joseph Bailey

Finding Inner Peace in Recovery

The Serenity Principle can be your path to freedom and inner peace once it’s understood. Joe Baily teaches us to apply the principles of psychology of the mind in order to bring peace, tranquility and contentment within ourselves. Applying these principles in addiction treatment will free your mind, and leave you with inner peace and serenity while on the road to recovery. When serenity is reached within us, we are full, happy, content and at peace.

Book Reviews:

  1. This book has changed my life. I am not an alcoholic but I used the same concepts in my everyday life. I really recommend this book to any one who wants to live a serene life needs to read this book.
  2. Bailey has presented easy to grasp ideas that really work for the person in recovery. I have used it on both a personal and professional level and would encourage others to do the same.

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The Serenity Principle

High Bottom Drunk

Author: Charles N. Roper, PhD

A Novel… and the Truth about Addiction& Recovery

High Bottom Drunk is a straight forward novel about addiction and holds nothing back. This addiction and recovery novel is not only open and honest, but you can feel the ‘pain of addiction’ at work as you read it. This excellent novel will open your eyes as you see and feel the effects dependency to alcohol and drugs has on a person no matter who you are. It’s also comforting to know that just as addiction creeps up and takes hold of you, treatment and recovery can too if you let it.

Book Reviews:

  1. A good read! Recommend this book to anyone interested in this subject matter.
  2. Reading this book lets the reader understand that all who suffer the daily torture of addiction, will be able to relate to this persons own hell.

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High Bottom Drunk

The Zen of Recovery

Author: Mel Ash

Mel Ash is an alcoholic, addict, and abused child, he shares his wonderful wisdom and experiences pertaining to recovery from addiction. The practice of Zen introduces an alternative Spiritual insight as an 11th step in which Mel shares his own recovery through. The practice of Zen will enhance and empower you spiritually. Through the practice of Zen applying powerful meditation and wisdom will help you live a fuller and happier life ‘a day at a time’. Zen of Recovery is enlightening and uplifting.

Book Reviews:

  1. Very well written.
  2. I have given away several copies of this book, and own one of my own, which I enjoy re-reading. Many people struggling with addictions also have difficulty with Alcoholics Anonymous’ emphasis on a “higher power” (generally conceived as “God”). This book serves the important function of introducing a non-theistic (non-”God”-based) approach to AA, and to a personal meditative practice.

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The Zen of Recovery