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Go Ask Alice

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3.76  ·  Rating details ·  223,457 ratings  ·  10,250 reviews
It started when she was served a soft drink laced with LSD in a dangerous party game. Within months, she was hooked, trapped in a downward spiral that took her from her comfortable home and loving family to the mean streets of an unforgiving city. It was a journey that would rob her of her innocence, her youth -- and ultimately her life.

Read her diary.
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...more
Paperback, 213 pages
Published January 1st 2006 by Simon Pulse (first published 1971)
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Trine To me it doesn't matter anymore. I was a troubled teen when I read it and "Alice" helped me realize, that I should face my problems instead of hiding…moreTo me it doesn't matter anymore. I was a troubled teen when I read it and "Alice" helped me realize, that I should face my problems instead of hiding in substance abuse or commit suicide. Both options I considered and both options I'm proud to say, I've never tried.
Fiction or nonfiction, the issues are real and the story should be respected as such.
I'm sure I'm not the only reader who believes, that characters don't have to be real to make an impact.(less)
This question contains spoilers… (view spoiler)
Lynette Browning-brock We know who did it to her: it was Beatrice Sparks, who needed a downer ending for the novel.

Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.76  · 
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 ·  223,457 ratings  ·  10,250 reviews


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Rachel
Aug 14, 2007 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: stupid faces
i read this in high school and went "oh my god...i'm never doing acid" and then went " how can anyone pretend this is a real diary?!" and then ate lsd-laced peanuts, locked myself in a closet, pulled out all of my hair and woke up three weeks later in a hospital bed..."what happened?" crap crap crap...this book is crap. plotline:
1. i'm a good girl
2. i'm going to a party...with boys...haha
3. i'll have a beer
4. i might as well try a joint
5. cocaine is awesome. what a
...more
Madison
Oct 19, 2007 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own, sad-but-good
It's hard for me to write this review because I don't really know where to begin.

Basically whether you believe this is fiction or not that should not matter. If you believe this story is too far fetched to be true, then I must say that you are absolutely wrong, because my (recovering) drug addicted sister is "Alice", I am the innocent "Alex", and our family is the one that will always love her and always take her back. Stories like this absolutely exist in real life. My sister even s
...more
Laura
Aug 17, 2007 rated it did not like it
Shelves: fiction
This book is crap on its own. But those of you old enough to remember the latter portion of the 70s might remember that Beatrice Sparks, the "editor" of Go Ask Alice, also "edited" a bunch of other alarmist books aimed at teens, all supposedly taken from teenagers' diaries. One was called "Jay's Journal," and was purportedly about a teen who gets involved with Satanism and eventually commits suicide to escape the horror of it all.

Even as a 12-year-old, however, it was obvious to me t
...more
Patricia (theinfophile)
Nov 12, 2007 rated it did not like it
Shelves: fiction, youngadults
I was never forced to read this when I was younger, so I thought that I'd pick it up and read it now, for a laugh, being as there are days when there is just too much blood in my drug-stream.


7pm 12 Nov 2007

Well, I'm about 12 page into this book and I already hate Alice. Quite a lot, actually. I hope that as I read further, Alice's drug-induced diary entries mark an improvement upon her character.

1pm 16 Nov 2007

Finished the book 3 days ago, an
...more
James
Feb 07, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: young-adult
This infuriating book is the most repugnant piece of reactionary propaganda that I've ever had the misfortune to read. Go Ask Alice is unnecessary proof that sex and drug stories are the best money makers; it helps when they also support a staunchly conservative, traditionalist agenda. The whole book is a fetid lie, and a poorly executed one at that.

OK, now that I've calmed down a little bit, let's actually discuss this "real diary." If there ever was a real diary (which seems hardly
...more
Petal X Planet
This was written by Nancy Reagan* as propaganda for her "Just Say NO" anti-drugs campaign. It contains every single cliche about how making friends with anyone whose social life doesn't involve Christian youth clubs will inevitably lead to the sort of parties where teenagers can drink beer and have a puff of a joint and it is downhill all the way from there.

Drugs lead to getting in with a bad crowd, having sex, stealing, dealing, prostitution, homelessness and insanity! Only the pastor can save
...more
Rachel
Oct 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: everyone
I first read this book in sixth grade. When I tell people this, they usually look at me in an appalled fashion, and ask if my parents knew I was reading it. And I tell them, yes, my mother knew, before I was even finished with the first entry. I had/ have a tendency to talk openly with my mother, especially upon the topic of books. When she saw that I was reading it, she looked at me a moment, then said something along the lines of: "Rachel, if you weren't such a mature reader/person, I would t ...more
Deanna
Sep 10, 2016 rated it liked it
3.5 Stars

First published in 1971, Go Ask Alice is a controversial book involving teenage addiction. It's written in first person in traditional diary form. We don't know the troubled teenage girls name but we follow her rapid descent into her life as an addict.

"Anonymous" is a lonely teenager who feels like she will never live up to the expectations of her parents. She struggles with self-esteen issues, loneliness, etc. On top of that her family has now moved and she's having troubl
...more
Manny
- Alice?

- Mm-hm?

- They told me to go ask you.

- Ask me what?

- Ah... I guess, should I do drugs?

- Well, how would I know? I'm just a made-up girl in a piece of anti-drugs propaganda that somehow became more famous than it deserved.

- Hey, don't be like that. I meant, if you actually had existed, then what would you have said?

The rest of this review is available elsewhere (the location cannot be given for Goodreads policy/>The
...more
Meredith
Jun 05, 2008 rated it did not like it
Bwaaah. So disappointing. Some of my co-workers were discussing this book at lunch one day, and I remembered being super curious about it when I was younger, but for some reason never got around to it. Unfortunately for my enjoyment of the book, I did some digging before reading it. I see on Goodreads that the author is not credited as "Anonymous" (as it still is on the cover of the book), but Beatrice Sparks. On the book, Sparks is listed as the editor, but a preface still states it is the real ...more
Sarah
Jan 29, 2008 rated it really liked it
My daughter read this book. I was ready to freak out - This book is way too graphic for an 11 year old. I was composing a letter to the middle school librarian who allowed her to check this book out. I was preparing a lecture for Ashley about what is and is not appropriate for a child to read. Then Ashley came to me and started talking about drugs. She started talking about the things that kids say about drugs at school. She told me that she and her best friend had a teary talk about how sad the ...more
Emily May
Feb 10, 2011 rated it did not like it
Shelves: young-adult, 2011
I couldn't even finish this book. I found it a real boring drag, even though it's only a novella. I tried so hard to get through it, I kept thinking surely it must get better... but it didn't. I couldn't stand the narrator, I felt no connection with her and despised most of her views. My eyes skipped through paragraphs in a desperate bid to get past extremely boring parts... only to find they continued throughout the book.
It wasn't a very good diary, you didn't seem to get a proper look in
...more
Grady Hendrix
Sep 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
Apparently, when you're a teenager, everyone wants to put LSD in your food nonstop.
Mary
Aug 30, 2007 rated it did not like it
I read this for the first time in college as part of a reading-intensive young adult lit class, and it was the worst of the many, many books we read. For one girl in the class, it was the only book of the many, many we read that she actually liked, solely because it was the only one she morally approved of (man, how she loathed Weetzie Bat). She went on to become our slacker school's valedictorian. She was a poet and used the word "tapestry" too much in her writing. I think all of this is quite ...more
Mista Frade
Aug 02, 2008 rated it did not like it
This is a sensationalist piece of garbage. A DARE commercial on speed (pun was intended) and I just didn't care about anyone because it was so poorly written.
Carly
Jul 09, 2007 rated it did not like it
Shelves: young-adult
This book is pretty silly & most likely a work of complete fiction. It was written back when conservatives thought they needed to fictionalize drug abuse in order to frighten teenagers. Luckily, this is a new millenium & most of us know what crack whores look like or have known people whose lives have been ruined by drugs. Most kids read this book at a young age & find it too thrilling to realize it's anti-drug propaganda. If you're not convinced that Go Ask Alice is fiction, read an ...more
Alex
Jun 02, 2014 rated it liked it
Recommends it for: squares
On July 10, she was secretly dosed with LSD at a party.
By July 20, she was using intravenous drugs.
By September she had bought a leather fringed vest, and it was all over.

"This was the scene, these were the swingers, and I wanted to be a part of it!"

So it goes in this 1971 classic of hysterical anti-drug malarkey. Within a few months our unnamed heroine has been gang raped on heroin; shortly after that, she's become a "Priestess of Satan" and drugs have literally "took her/>"This
...more
Ahmad Sharabiani
Go Ask Alice, Beatrice Sparks
In 1968, a 15-year-old girl begins keeping a diary, in which she records her thoughts and concerns about issues such as crushes, weight loss, sexuality, social acceptance, and relating to her parents. The dates and locations mentioned in the book place its events as occurring between 1968 and 1970 in California, Colorado, Oregon, and New York City. The two towns in which the diarist's family reside during the story are not identified, and are only described as
...more
drowningmermaid
What drug you would have to be on to believe that this was a real diary?

Maybe Squeaky Clean Jesus Powder.

And yes, this is coming from someone who has never done drugs, and believes strongly in the illegality and deleterious effects of all drugs, including (and in some cases especially) marijuana.

I cannot tell you how much I hate the hypocrisy of missionary efforts like this one. "Oh, here's an idea! I'll wrap my didactic message in a 'true' story! My lies are sanctified by the holi
...more
Debbie
Jan 23, 2008 rated it liked it
Shelves: banned
Though purported to be the real diary of a 15-year-old girl who became addicted to drugs during the 1960's, Go Ask Alice is actually a work of fiction.

The narrator unknowingly takes LSD (acid) at a party and has a great trip. She is instantly addicted and a few weeks later, she is willingly sucking down any and every drug she can get. Come on!

While I am certainly not an advocate of drug use, there is no scientific evidence that LSD is addictive--or marijuana, another key ingredient
...more
xAnissax
Jan 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: EVERYONE
This book is something every kid should read before high school. The main character is slipped LSD and hooked on drugs. As she becomes an addict, her diary explains her deepest fears and thoughts. The truth in stories can be scary.
Evan
This book has it all: Teen sex, preteen whores, gay and lesbian sex (not looked upon favorably), drug usage of all types, rape, hippies, communes, hitchhiking, lecherous bohemians, wild parties, drug pushing to 9-year-old grade-school kids, Berkeley burnouts, surreal drug dreams, lots of imagery involving death and maggots, teen vengeance and peer/herd cruelty and vicious rumor-mongering, babies in peril, cats spun in washing machines, girls in an insane asylum, menstruation and teen pregnancy i ...more
Kerri
Jan 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
An interesting one to review. I've read this book three or four times, beginning when I was about ten -- I was enthralled by it then, completely invested in 'Alice' and devastated yet fascinated by the downward spiral of her life. At that time in my life it was easily a five-star book, especially because it was a true story (!).

Of course I later learned that it's a fictional book, presumably written to scare kids off drugs. I don't actually have an issue with that message, though I'm
...more
Sarah
Jun 14, 2015 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya, z2015
The only reason I read this book is because I thought it was an autobiography. When I finished reading it, I did some research and found out that it was not a real diary. Now that I know it isn't a true story, I don't really have anything good to say about it.

It really bothered me that the author said it was a real teenagers diary, when really it was just a work of fiction. The author was clearly trying to scare people with this book. When I was reading the book, the only redeeming quality was
...more
Elise (TheBookishActress)
Go Ask Alice is one of the least believable fake diaries I have ever read. The protagonist is so robotic and idiotic and rings false at every turn.

This story is also just clearly meant as a “don't do drugs, or you will die” cautionary tale. The character actually ends the book resolved to drop her drug addiction, and then dies at the end. I take issue with this form of narrative punishment; I prefer stories where characters make mistakes and yet persevere. This story would be more powerful as a stor
...more
Charlotte May
Aug 15, 2019 marked it as library-loans
My first pick from my TBR box and it ends up being the first book I ever added to my want to read shelf on Goodreads back in 2016!

I'm intrigued :)
Amy
Nov 29, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Courtney
Aug 23, 2007 rated it it was ok
I picked this book off the self to read at work as I am determined to familiarize myself with the collection more and because it's a "classic" and on the ALA banned book list.

While reading I often found myself thinking..."What? No 16 year old girl says that. This was obviously a part the editors edited heavily." Then I realized how often I was thinking that. The whole thing struck me as oddly UNrealistic even though it was supposed to be a real account. (And is shelved in our non-fic
...more
Rosianna
Jan 27, 2009 rated it did not like it
The way I felt about this book entirely changed once I found out that it wasn't a real diary, which provided insight into how much the background story of a novel affects my enjoyment of it. Does it make it any worse a book? Yes. What struck me the most about the book in the first place was the supposed 15 year old's ability to be honest with her diary - I constantly lie to my own, never trusting it with the truth, or trusting myself with it - so when that need for someone to be honest with it f ...more
Ammy
Oct 22, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: girlsz
this book is so interseting is like so many surprising things happen unexpected .like this one girl has no control over herself shes been taken over by drugs and running away from her difficulties.i really like it because it shows how we complain so much of our everyday lives but what we dont know is anyone around us can be thinking the same . however solving it diferently in a way that can be so dangerous.
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Play Book Tag: Go Ask Alice, by Beatrice Sparks- 2 Stars 7 26 Nov 04, 2018 08:49AM  
YA Buddy Readers'...: Go Ask Alice by Beatrice Sparks (as "Anonymous") - Starting August 15th 2018 16 24 Aug 24, 2018 09:06AM  
Go Ask Alice 1 11 Mar 19, 2018 10:20AM  
Go Ask Alice 1 5 Mar 19, 2018 09:31AM  

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691 followers
Beatrice Sparks was an American therapist and Mormon youth counselor who was known for producing books purporting to be the 'real diaries' of troubled teenagers. The books deal with topical issues such as drug abuse, Satanism, teenage pregnancy or AIDS, and are presented as cautionary tales. Although Sparks always presented herself as merely the discoverer and editor of the diaries, records at the U.S. ...more
“I'm not really sure which parts of myself are real and which parts are things I've gotten from books.” 559 likes
“It's a good thing most people bleed on the inside or this would be a gory, blood-smeared earth.” 285 likes
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