Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Cool, Hip & Sober by Bill Manville

Cool, Hip & Sober: 88 Ways to Beat Booze and Drugs, Bill Manville. New York: Tom Doherty Associates, 2004. e-book, 705 pps.

     For those who don't know, Chit Chat over in Pennsylvania is officially "The Caron Foundation." Bill Manville refers to Chit Chat in his book. He was doing a radio show at the time that this book was published. Many of the questions included in Cool, Hip & Sober came from callers or are composites of questions phoned in by callers to his show.

     The title of the book is a bit misleading. There are not really 88 ways offered to beat active addiction. But there are 88 questions and extensive answers. Manville proposes the standard route these days to recovery; time in a detox if needed, then a rehab using the Minnesota model coupled with attendance at [primarily A.A.] meetings. Manville includes those who are addicted to other drugs besides the drug alcohol in his use of the word alcoholic. While I am not entirely comfortable with that decision, I don't have to be. The terminology works for the audience that Cool, Hip & Sober is aimed at.

     Cool, Hip & Sober grew on me. At first I thought to myself nothing much new here. Yet I kept reading and through the professionalism [which Manville attempts to escape in his answers] quite a bit of common sense shows through. Manville does not pussyfoot around sore subjects. He tells it like it is without giving into that misnamed monstrosity "tough love" that folks not in the know of the history of said phrase appear to relish tossing around.

sapphoq reviews says: Bill Manville's Cool, Hip & Sober holds appeal to a general mixed audience. Recommended for anyone with basic questions about addiction and recovery.

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