I was really looking forward to reading “Smashed: Story of a Drunken Girlhood” by Koren Zailckas. This nonfiction story follows Koren from her teenage years until her twenties, and her experiences with excessive drinking. Koren is not an alcoholic, but she has definite alcohol issues, drinking in excess mainly to overcome her anxiety and shyness.
Koren is an extremist. Everything that she does is in excess. She goes from excessive drinking and partying, to being an anti-social hermit, to being obsessed with a new boy, and back to excessive drinking. Koren says, “I already need alcohol, not physically but certainly emotionally; my relationships, self-image, and ability to cope fluctuate with my blood alcohol content” (p297).
While the book is interesting, unfortunately, it was also long and wordy. I thought “Smashed” would be similar to the other one-worded titles of “Wasted” and “Madness” by Marya Hornbacher, a journalist/author whose eating disorder and bipolar disorder dominated her life. Marya’s stories in both novels were easier to read, less wordy, and, at the risk of sounding insensitive, more interesting.
If you are going to read a book about a woman’s battle with a disorder, I’d start first with “Wasted” and “Madness” by Marya Hornbacher.
Have you read any of these three books? Let me know what you think!