Book: Crank by Ellen Hopkins|Narrated by Laura Flanagan

Published August 2008|Published by Highbridge Audio|Run time: 4 hours, 31 minutes

Audiobook, via the public library

Genre: YA/Contemporary

Check it out at: Goodreads|Barnes And Noble|Amazon|Ellen Hopkins’ Website Summary: Kristina Georgia Snow is the perfect daughter: gifted high school junior, quiet, never any trouble. But on a trip to visit her absentee father, she meets a boy who introduces her to crank. At first she finds it freeing, but soon Kristina’s personality disappears inside the drug. What began as a wild, ecstatic ride turns into a struggle through hell for her mind, her soul, and her life.

I really liked Crank.  After listening to Identical, and having seen this one in the digital library, I decided to give it a listen.

There’s something very poetic about Crank, and it was a very interesting listen.  You really see what it does to Kristina, and how much she needs it by the end of the book.  Even her child can’t completely save her from it.  I liked seeing her life during this time, but unfortunately, you don’t see really see anything of her life before becoming addicted.  And you only see a little bit of her life after learning she’s pregnant.  I would have liked more of her life before, to see how much it really changed her.

I thought Kristina was interesting, but she wasn’t as interesting as I expected.  I think having a little bit more of her life before crank would have helped with that.  I mean, you get a really good look how someone gets addicted, but with Kristina, you don’t really get the why, which is something that’s sort of intriguing.  You see how ugly addiction is, and how hard it is to overcome.  Even at the end, with a newborn, Kristina still struggles with her meth addiction.  I like that she doesn’t sugarcoat it.  I like that you see it in all it’s ugliness.  I like that even at the end of the book, things aren’t completely wrapped up or resolved.  You really get a sense that addiction is something you always struggle with, no matter what else is going on.

It was a little hard to connect with Kristina, because I felt like I only knew the Kristina who was addicted to crank.

I thought Kristina calling crank “the monster” as interesting at first, but it got tiresome by the end.  I get why she calls it the monster, but it was still got old pretty fast.

It’s a pretty gritty, dark book, and Flanagan did a great job at showing Kristina’s downward spiral.  This is the second book I’ve listened to that’s been narrated by Flanagan, and she’s a great narrator who really brought Kristina to life.

Final thoughts: I’m slowly becoming a fan of Ellen Hopkins and I like how dark, gritty and real Crank is.  A little more of her life in Reno before becoming addicted to crank would have been nice, but overall, it is a really good read.  It gets a 4 out of 5.

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