Reading/Interest Level: Young Adult
Publisher: Simon Pulse
A journal is the friend you can tell all your secrets to. No matter what you do, it will never judge you. The narrator starts writing in her journal on her sixteenth birthday. She has a loving family, but she struggles to make close friends. When she goes to her first real party and tries her first sip of alcohol, her life starts to change. Suddenly, she has close friends that adore her and older boys that desire her. Her friends help her to see drugs and partying through a completely different lens. Since it’s just a way to get closer to her friends and be her true self, how could it possibly be bad? She continues to make small decisions that she’s always heard were dangerous, but it feels like she’s becoming who she was always meant to become, so she keeps it all hidden from her parents. But, when she gets tired of the life she’s living and tries to quit her destructive habits, she discovers that she can’t do it all on her own.
Lucy in the Sky is an anonymously—comparable to Go Ask Alice. Though it is supposed to be from the perspective of a sixteen-year-old girl, the voice seems a bit forced, building the character with cliches of a teenage girl. Consequently, the narrative does not seem authentic. However, the book very clearly demonstrates the danger of peer pressure and the significance of individual choices. The author does an excellent job of showing a very gradual shift that happens over the course of the book, so that the decisions that the protagonist makes by the end of the book seem believable, even though she never would have made those choices at the beginning. As the story chronicles the protagonist’s descent into substance abuse, the book includes detailed descriptions of what it is like to be under the influence of illegal drugs and how those drugs are taken. Because of this, along with sexual content and language, even mature readers should approach this narrative with caution and sensitivity.
*Contains severe language, severe sexual content, severe drug abuse, and mild violence.