Read Basketball Junkie by Chris Herren Bill Reynolds Online


I was dead for thirty seconds.That's what the cop in Fall River told me. When the EMTs found me, there was a needle in my arm and a packet of heroin in the front seat.At basketball-crazy Durfee High School in Fall River, Massachusetts, junior guard Chris Herren carried his family's and the city's dreams on his skinny frame. His grandfather, father, and older brother had crI was dead for thirty seconds.That's what the cop in Fall River told me. When the EMTs found me, there was a needle in my arm and a packet of heroin in the front seat.At basketball-crazy Durfee High School in Fall River, Massachusetts, junior guard Chris Herren carried his family's and the city's dreams on his skinny frame. His grandfather, father, and older brother had created their own sports legends in a declining city; he was the last, best hope for a career beyond the shuttered mills and factories. Herren was heavily recruited by major universities, chosen as a McDonald's All-American, featured in a Sports Illustrated cover story, and at just seventeen years old became the central figure in Fall River Dreams, an acclaimed book about the 1994 Durfee team's quest for the state championship.Leaving Fall River for college, Herren starred on Jerry Tarkanian's Fresno State Bulldogs team of talented misfits, which included future NBA players as well as future convicted felons. His gritty, tattooed, hip-hop persona drew the ire of rival fans and more national attention: Rolling Stone profiled him, 60 Minutes interviewed him, and the Denver Nuggets drafted him. When the Boston Celtics acquired his contract, he lived the dream of every Massachusetts kid—but off the court Herren was secretly crumbling, as his alcohol and drug use escalated and his life spiraled out of control.Twenty years later, Chris Herren was married to his high-school sweetheart, the father of three young children, and a heroin junkie. His basketball career was over, consumed by addictions; he had no job, no skills, and was a sadly familiar figure to those in Fall River who remembered him as a boy, now prowling the streets he once ruled, looking for a fix. One day, for a time he cannot remember, he would die.In his own words, Chris Herren tells how he nearly lost everything and everyone he loved, and how he found a way back to life. Powerful, honest, and dramatic, Basketball Junkie is a remarkable memoir, harrowing in its descent, and heartening in its return....

Title : Basketball Junkie
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780312656720
Format Type : Hardcover
Number of Pages : 288 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Basketball Junkie Reviews

  • Frederic
    2018-12-12 03:58

    Totally honest and vulnerable, Chris Herren is taking us to his hell and back. It is a memoir of struggle, addiction but he is also showing an amazing strength. It is an inspiring read that leaves us with foods for thoughts, I really loved it!!!!

  • Katie
    2018-12-14 07:07

    I received this book through Goodreads First Reads and was excited to be able to read it. That feeling, however, was short lived.The underlying theme and purpose of the book had a ton of potential. Chris Herren goes through his professional basketball career as an absolute junkie, to the detriment of his family and his coaches. The book explains the timelines of events from when he started doping and drinking to when he finally decided to put his family first. First of all, let me say, I am extremely proud of Chris for finally realizing his problem and doing something about it. I hope, for his sake and his familys' sake that he is still living life sober and telling others what he went through. That being said, the book is forgettable on a couple of levels.Basically this was a timeline of events and occurances. There was no dialogue, no mention of what he was going through inside of his head during his lowest points--only that he was detoxing and sweating and was just surface facts of what he went through. There were few quotes from coaches or family, but no conversations. The author speaks about his wife and how she was strong, but doesn't offer much else to the relationship between the two of them. Why did she stay? How did she try to help? I can understand that being a junkie/druggie, you push everyone important to you away. I get that...but there has to be more to this story and more about the addiction and absolutely more about the process of recovery. There needs to be more to capture and motivate. The book doesn't delve into the depths of what he had to go through in rehab or with his family. Being an outsider isn't enough.I understand the several grammatical errors, since this was an uncorrected version and the sentence structure/paragraph structure left something to be desired. I would honestly love to read the finished product to see how it changes. I know it has the ability to be a great memoir that can teach people about coping with recovery if the author would open up. After all, he obviously wants the story out there for the world to see. Make it real...make it honest. I know there was more to the experience of the whole thing than this.

  • Mary
    2018-12-07 07:09

    A honest story of addiction and all the terror it inflicts.Chris Herren:"No one sets out to be an addict. No one sets out to ruin their life and the lives of all the people around them. No one sets out to see the anguish in the eyes of the people who love them. No one sets out to live the life I led. It happens over time, sure. but it also happens when you don't address your issues.......I also tell them (kids) I was never the most fucked up kid in my circle of friends in high school, never the one that drank the most, or did the most drugs. That there always kids worse off then me. I tell them that nobody would have predicted what was going to happen to me back then, the hell I would live in, the price I would pay for my addiction. I tell them that addiction is a sneaky thing, that it happens over time, until  one day you wake up and you are your addiction. It owns you, not the other way around. I tell them that's what happens when you don't deal with your issues.Thats why meetings are so important. You have to hear people's stories over and over, get a daily reminder that you're not alone, not the only one going through this. People have to believe they can get out of their mess.I'm not saying I'm cured or that I know all the answers. But I thank God for ability to stay sober, and to be around people who are sober. I know what works for me: go to meetings. Let the past go, because to dwell on it only brings regret and guilt. Don't think about the future , because that brings fear. I just stay where I'm supposed to be. I know if I stay in the moment and take care of my business, I have a chance."

  • Marsha
    2018-11-22 10:20

    Have you ever wondered what happens to people after reading a biography? Fall River Dreams is the story of year in the life of 17 year old Chris Herren. Basketball Junkie is the answer to what happened to him after Fall River and it is much more nightmare than dream. Amazingly talented as a basketball player Chris becomes drug addicted and blows his career with drugs and alcohol. But this is a story of redemption and survival. Which is also the story of Fall River, his hometown, and another character and player in the story. Told with unflinching truth and insight, this well written book is well worth your time and should be on every high school coaches shelf as a cautionary tale to their athletes.

  • Jessica
    2018-11-22 06:06

    There's a reason I don't like reading memoirs of drugs addicts. Well there 's a few reasons but mainly because I don't like the whiny tone they all have. This one is no exception. Written by a high school basketball star who actually made it to the NBA only to be brought down by his expensive all consuming drug addiciont, this story follows a predictable pattern. He wants to stop using, he stops using, he falls victim to temptation, repeat over and over. Supposedly clean since the birth of his 3rd child, Herren has decided to tell his story. Too bad it's nothing new. it.

  • Kaio Menezes
    2018-12-04 05:01

    I enjoyed this book on Chris Herren. I watched the documentary on it and they were both very similar. I liked this book because it was about a basketball player that gets addicted to many different drugs and goes through many different expiercences and he comes close to dying many different times but in the end he chose his family over drugs and basketball and now tries to help kids that went through the same thinf that he went through.

  • Edward
    2018-12-15 11:00

    I am not quite so savage about this book as Barry was, but my concern for Chris Herren is that his recovery has been less than three years and that is not a long time for one so addicted as he was. We can only hope for his sake and that of his family, he can maintain his recovery. I did enjoy the descriptions of Fall River and since I love basketball, his journey was interesting.

  • Danielle King
    2018-12-15 11:02

    I love books involving sports, and Chris Herren's memoir was no exception. Through his book, he brings readers along his rough journey of basketball and drug addiction, from high school all the way up to the NBA. I couldn't put this book down and finished it in two days- thanks to my friend, Jackie, for recommending it to me!

  • Sandi
    2018-11-29 08:19

    I read and really enjoyed Fall River Dreams: A Team's Quest for Glory, A Town's Search for Its Soul so decided to pick up this book to learn the rest of the story. A very honest look at how addictions can completely take over a life.

  • Joe Rodeck
    2018-12-17 05:10

    A downer. This is the least of the downward spiral stories I've read. Chris Merrin's ghost writer did not serve him well. Too many WTF's for example. One minute he's at Boston College; then, with no segue, he's at Fresno State. I'd like a better first hand account on things such as the pressures on a home town sports hero or what it's like to guard an NBA superstar. But it's just a topical I started with booze, then acid, then coke, then oxycontin . . . with little introspection. He speaks of a few coaches and his wife with some obligatory respect. But it's 99% bitterness.The good: There's a cursory summary of alternative basketball leagues for the NBA not-makes. Middle school reading level.

  • Josh Makarenko
    2018-12-09 11:07

    Raw and real and a crazy story. In all honest I appreciate the fact that he shared it and the work he's doing today to help others is inspiring!Poorly written book though, and extremely hard to follow. He jumps around from place to place and you alomst feel dizzy trying to keep up. I think it could have been done amazingly well had the story been brought together with a bit more clarity. I guess that's the nature of the story and background of the addict and his life. Still worth a read, just don't get caught up in the details, go for the bigger picture... and it's a quick read.

  • Lindsay
    2018-12-07 03:57

    Simply put: It was an easy read. I was fascinated with the numerous struggles Herren faced, the number of second chances he was given and finally his victory after it all. With with that said, it really is not my kind of writing style. It was simply worded and I found it to be quite repetitive-not the plot, just the actual sentences. I do also wish there was just a tad bit more emotion or insight into his deepest thoughts. The book almost felt more factual than emotional and I guess I was hoping for the latter.

  • Pete Oudsema
    2018-11-17 09:59

    If you like sports stories, this book is for you. If you like redemption stories, this book is for you.

  • Edward Brown
    2018-12-12 06:10

    275 pages

  • Michael Liborio
    2018-12-18 08:59

    The decision to become a professional athlete and being exposed to the rich and party life can really affect the choices someone can make. In “Basketball Junkie,” by Chris Herren and Bill Reynolds, Chris Herren breaks down his terrible decisions that he made when he became a famous athlete. Chris Herren grew up in a basketball household; he played basketball because he was expected to by his family. He was never really exposed to anything else, it was almost like he was forced to play. His older brother, grandfather, dad, and three uncles all played basketball at Durfee High School and they were great players. Chris broke the scoring record of 2,073 points at the school and was projected to become a professional player. He had everything going for him. He played all through the youth leagues to high school and onto college. When he was drafted to the NBA, he started off taking pain medication for soreness, which is reasonable for any professional athlete. But the simple pain medication soon led to heavier drugs that got him in trouble. Through many months of rehab, Chris eventually fixed everything and got his life back on track. Like many athletes, Chris Herren made the mistake of letting fame consume him; but he later turned his life around and inspired others. After high school, Chris Herren went to Boston College and started off playing well. But he broke his wrist and failed two drugs tests for marijuana and heroine and was expelled from the school. So, he transferred to Fresno State. He played for three years with a total of 86 games and decided to declare for the NBA draft. After being selected by the Denver Nuggets in the second round of the draft, he went on to play for two years. One year with the Denver Nuggets and the following year with the Boston Celtics. While playing for the Celtics, he was taking painkillers to ease his muscle pain, like OxyContin, which eventually led to crystal meth and an overdose of heroine. Because of the overdose, Chris crashed his car into a utility pole and supposedly died for thirty seconds. Chris somehow managed to stay married for nine years throughout all of this chaos. He was married to Heather Gray and had three children. After losing his job in the NBA, Chris spent all of his money on drugs; “There had been days living in the dark because the electricity had been turned off and we didn’t have the money to turn it back on.” He couldn’t afford anything and he continually went behind his wife’s back and stole money and lied to get more drugs. One day, he woke up in his car nearly dead with a more heroine in the passenger seat in the parking lot of a Dunkin Donuts. He was sent to the hospital and totally forgot about what had happened. All of his loved ones and the news stations were at the hospital shocked at what he had become (This event led to him being cut from the NBA). After realizing what he had done, he finally became sober. Ultimately, Chris formed The Herren Project in 2011. Its main goal was to raise awareness on the dangers of substance abuse and to provide assistance to others to reach a sober life. This program showed the young kids ways to avoid drugs and peer pressure. This program has helped 355 individuals and families with treatment and coping mechanisms. Chris also launched another program, Project Purple, to take away the scars of addiction. He wants to show others how to make positive decisions in their lives and how dangerous substance abuse can be. All in all, this is one of the best books I have read. It kept my attention throughout the entire book; Chris used very thorough and descriptive details in all the interesting plot of his life, which taught me many things as an athlete. The author’s overall message to the reader was to not allow peer pressure, drugs, or fame get to your head. Chris is an example of what you can end up like when you take drugs and lose focus on what your goal is. Drugs and peer pressure will mess up anyone’s life! If you have anything to do with drugs, you will eventually get yourself into trouble because drugs consume your mind. I learned multiple lessons while reading this book; family is extremely important and supportive in tough times, drugs will ruin your life, and stay focused on completing my life goals. I definitely recommend this book; it has a strong plot and a clear message to the reader. Also, this is a very realistic novel that shows what happens to roughly one third of the athletes who do become professionals. We have the amazing athletes like Lebron James and Lionel Messi whose lives are going great, and we also have the drop-off drug addicts who go broke within a decade of being a professional like Chris. All athletes can learn an important message from this novel about the life of Chris Herren.

  • Luke McCollough
    2018-11-22 10:18

    "Basketball Junkie" by former Boston Celtics guard Chris Herren is one of the best sports books I have read, if not the best overall book I have ever read. Herren is telling his story as one of the best basketball players to come out of Fall River, Massachusetts. Herren does an amazing job of portraying the highs and lows of his life on and off the basketball court. The majority of the book is about his ongoing drug addiction in the younger years of his life. The way I felt while reading was unlike any book, Herren makes it seem like it is just you and him in a room having a conversation. He puts you in his shoes through the bad times in your life, and really makes you feel what dealing with an addiction while juggling a family and an NBA basketball career all at once. It is an amazing story told in a great way. I would recommend this book to really anyone looking for a story that grabs you in, and makes you never want to stop reading. This is an inspiring story that everyone would enjoy.

  • Chris Fenaroli
    2018-11-18 06:07

    Basketball Junkie by Chris Herren gives you a frightening example of how detrimental drugs are to the users life. Chris Herren grew up in Fall River, a small working class town in Massachusetts, close to Boston, where basketball was the only thing that mattered. His family pressures him a lot, and he manages to exceed all their expectations. While he is great at basketball, he doesn’t enjoy it, the pressure and intensity ruined it. He and his friends soon entered the world of drugs, and from then on his career went up, but his life went down. He went to Fresno State University, and then was drafted to the Denver Nuggets, all the while with a secret addiction. He even was drafted by the Celtics. He would have been living his lifelong dream, if it hadn’t had been for his addiction. Instead he was living hell, he could keep up as long as he had drugs in his system, so therefore in order to hide his addiction, he had to let the drugs dictate his life. During warm ups minutes before a game, he would have to leave and drive to find his dealer, just so he could get through the game without suffering. His whole career was perilously balancing on how long he could hide his addiction, and he couldn’t do it forever. In 2004, he was charged with possession of heroin and driving under the influence with a revoked license, and now his career was failing too. For the next four years, his life was controlled by the drugs, and he’d travel around the world playing in different leagues, and then getting fired due to his addiction, until he reached a low point. He was found passed out in an alley in Tehran, after overdosing. It feels like the point of this book is to deter adolescents from drugs, and it does so very well. This story is simply told. Chris Herren writes it bluntly and honestly, and he isn’t afraid to reveal the uglier parts of his life, and this makes it very effective in describing the horrors of addiction, “Some nights on the road I was so depressed I would sit in my hotel room and cry, just lie there sobbing. I had become so strapped by my addiction. It had robbed me of so much. Many times coming clean and admitting everything was on the tip of my tongue, but I couldn’t get the words out. The idea of the publicity, the shame, the horror of it, crippled me... Knowing that as soon as you do that, the checks stop and your world crumbles, and nothing will ever be the same again?(174)” His honesty about how terrible his life was very successful in scaring readers. But what truly is great about the book is its story. The way Chris lives his double life for so many years, then nearly loses everything and struggles to get back up. For me it was the fact that he actually lived the experiences he wrote about that makes it so gripping. And it was even more incredible how he managed to escape his hell. His story has made him a sought after motivational speaker and the subject of multiple television documentaries, and has provided inspiration to many.

  • Grant Martignetti
    2018-11-22 10:26

    “Basketball Junkie” “Basketball Junkie” is a memoir written by a professional basketball star Chris Herren. It follows the life of a young kid who attends Durfee High School in Fall River, Massachusetts. Like all high school basketball players dreams, he wanted to be the best and be recruited to a top level college and then continue his career in the NBA. Not only that, but Chris was a top recruit who was selected as a McDonald’s all American and chose to be a hometown hero and committed to play basketball at Boston College. Nothing could get better than that, entering college as the player to watch on the cover of Sports Illustrated magazine, Chris had everything going for him. He went on to college to be a star but soon found out he was kicked out of the university because he was caught with obsessive use of drugs on and off the court. His dream was coming to a crumble when one remaining division 1 coach at Fresno State decided to give him a chance. He once again began to shine on the court but live a lie off the court. He was constantly getting in trouble for his addiction and had to face rehab a few times, but this was nothing that was going to stop him. As long as he had a basketball in one hand, he had a syringe in the other. He finished his college career and went on to the NBA with the Denver nuggets, a year later he was traded to the Celtics and labeled “The Home town Hero” once again. Drugs took over his career and now he was the bum that sat on the street outside of the garden waiting for his heroin dealer to arrive so he could go play in his game later that evening. He ran into numerous problems with the law and his family, but nothing could stop him. It was not until he died for 35 seconds and brought back to life to actually listen to his wife when she said “this is it, fix it, or you are never seeing me, or your kids ever again.” He had hit an all-time low and he was not ready to ruin his career. He quit basketball and established a steady job and family life, while spreading his story to everyone who wants to listen. I have never read a book as great as this one right here. It is the easiest book to connect with because this is something we see all the time being in high school. When everything seems to be great on the outside, it might not be on the inside, and there is something that needs to be done to help you fix it. Everyone can get to this point, but why get there, if you can avoid the situation from the beginning. It seems so naive to say, because it is not that easy, but when you can learn from others and see how bad it is, you might be able to help yourself turn it all around.

  • Meghan R
    2018-11-22 09:03

    Over the course of the term I read Basketball Junkie by Chris Herren and Bill Reynolds. The Theme of his book I think would be to think about the consequences of drugs and alcohol before you make any decisions. An overall summary of Basketball Junkie is Chris Herren’s story about his struggles with drugs and alcohol. Chris was an amazing basketball playing and ended up not being able to play because of drugs and alcohol. He grew up in Fall River Massachusetts, attended Durfee high school, attended Boston College and later on Fresno State University. He had lots of second chances in his life until his career finally fell when he played for the Boston Celtics while still using drugs.Since Basketball Junkie is a biography my favorite character would have to be Chris Herren. Chris was a tough kid and playing basketball wasn’t just for fun around his house. Having his older brother Michael play at durfee and have a great career there was a lot of pressure on Chris to follow in his footsteps. Chris new that and he said “You learned early that you weren’t playing just for yourself, but for you city, too.” (Pg 24) Chris shows his courage throughout his biography in many ways. For example, he went to Boston College after he graduated from Durfee, and once again he had to follow in his brother’s footsteps. His brother had gone to BC as well. When things did not quite work out at BC He decided to go to Fresno State which is very far from home. To be very far from home he did not have friends or family around him and most importantly the drugs were not around as often. Chris’s struggle started with the drinking and went on from there to the extreme. At the end of the book was my favorite part when he said “A story that my kids could be proud of. And I could be proud of it too.” (pg 270) This is my favorite part because it sums up all of the emotion and feelings it tore between his family and how somehow it ended up to be a great big story. Giving up drugs is not easy for a drug addict like Chris but he got through it.Overall, this book was very enjoyable to me. Although it is about basketball and that’s probably the main reason everyone thinks that is why I picked it, there’s a whole lot more to it. It shows the struggle that Chris had throughout his entire life with drugs and alcohol. I would recommend this to everyone because it really shows how drugs and alcohol can affect your life. I would give Basketball Junkie five stars because it was just that good. Today Chris has three kids and a wife Heather, who have been together since high school. He also travels around to schools and colleges to tell his stories to others.

  • EricLooby
    2018-11-22 10:21

    Predict: When I predicted what this book was going to be about I was completely wrong. I began reading and it started out with Chris Herren, the main character, explaining his childhood. I had no idea it would turn from a high-school kid pressured to playing basketball since he was 3 to a full blown heroin addict. “You’re a junkie.” (Herren 185).Preview: Before I read the book I looked at the title the pictures and the reviews on the back to get an idea on what the story might be about. I've noticed that I do this subconsciously with any book I see. I don’t go as far as reading the reviews or summary posted on the back of each book I see. However, I do look at the title and the picture posted on the cover of the book to where I truly am “judging a book by it’s cover”. Connect: When reading this book I connected with Chris in some ways. I am not a heroin addict but I am somewhat pressured to play and succeed in sports from my family. Chris had deep roots in Fall River basketball with his father and grandfather playing in Fall River. Both my father and his father grew up playing basketball in South Dakota so I can relate to the pressure he felt growing up knowing he had to play sports. “I never played a basketball game for fun in my life.” (Herren 22). Visualize: Even though the author was a drug addict with a mediocre education he still managed to create a mental movie for me with his writing. Once part of the book especially is him describing the places he played in Europe and how he communicated with his dealers while over there. “Now his eyes were so big they were buggin’ out of his head.” (Herren 187).Make Inferences: Many people would say that Chris fell into drugs because of the pressure he felt early and the need for an escape from such pressure. I would agree, but to a certain extent. Every human has certain gifts Chris was gifted with basketball skills. These gifts only get you so far. As a basketball player you must work hard to progress your game and become better. Chris had enough willpower to quit drugs early but since was already into them he didn't necessarily know how easy it was to become an addict. “In my own twisted logic I had convinced myself that if I wasn't shooting, I could quit any time if I really put my mind to it.” (Herren 185).

  • Lianna Natola
    2018-12-15 06:02

    Basketball Junkie is the uncensored story of basketball star Chris Herren’s career and addiction. It is the tell-all autobiography from the person who experienced it himself. Herren details his experiences with his hope to inspire his readers to not go down the same path that he did. As a freshman at Durfee High School in Fall River, Massachusetts, Chris Herren had always lived in the shadows of his father and brother, two basketball legends at Durfee. When he stepped onto the court, everybody was amazed at the talent this kid brought to the court. A no-brainer for a scholarship, Herren took his career to the NCAA playing for Boston College and Fresno State. In his college career was where everything he was doing besides basketball was found out. After failing three drug tests at Boston College, he transferred to play at Fresno State, where he failed another one. Herren still continued his basketball career when he was drafted into the NBA in 1999 by the Denver Nuggets and later traded to the Boston Celtics. After suffering a shoulder injury leaving him sidelined for a season, Herren was able to get his hands on prescription painkillers which he took advantage of. This wasn’t his gateway to drug use though. Behind all of his basketball success was a dark side that took away from his accomplishments; a severe addiction problem that Herren narrates through his book beginning in his high school years. He describes the struggles and sacrifices he endured while going through the toughest part of his life in his autobiography without holding back on any detail. This book is not for those easily offended or are uncomfortable with strong language or drug use. There are a lot of swears, as that was just Herren’s vocabulary. I recommend this book to older teens and adults who are not bothered by drugs and profanity and who are mature enough to handle the subject, as it is no laughing matter. This is an inspiring story meant to shock readers. It is meant to be so to the point and blunt that readers would never make the same choices that Herren did, and he is making sure they don’t through his book. Basketball Junkie is Chris Herren’s inspiring story that will make you feel like you’ve felt his experiences through this book. Kudos to Herren for being able to share his story to try to make a difference in other people’s lives.

  • Emily
    2018-12-11 03:03

    "I was dead for thirty seconds."That is how the book starts off. Immediately, I was hooked, wanting to know more. In the book Basketball Junkie: A Memoir by Chris Herren, Herren writes about his tremendous success as a basketball prodigy with a bright future. However, he lived a dark, double life that lead to a downfall that eventually spirals out of his control. Born in Fall River, Massachusetts, Herren had been in the public eye since he could remember. Being a star basketball player since the age of 9, and going on to score 2,073 career points at Durfee High School, Herren had a bright athletic future ahead of him: receiving a division 1 college scholarship and eventually being drafted into the NBA. However, with just a few bad decisions, Herren ruined his basketball career. More importantly, these choices almost ended his life. Failed drug tests and several felonies led being kicked out of college. After almost losing his family, Herren finds his way to sobriety and has since then been clean. Through painstakingly frightful details, readers learn the dangers of substance abuse through Herren, who tells his life story in this novel. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone mature enough to handle very sensitive, and possibly offensive content, because it is such an inspiring book with a truly important message that I feel every person needs to know. It is by far one of my favorite books that I have ever read, and although I have not experienced the situations that he describes, the content of the book really spoke to me as a reader and a person.

  • Andreea Daia
    2018-12-03 05:16

    ******Full Disclosure**** This was an ARC copy, that was received through the GoodReads Advance program. I am grateful for the chance to have read this novel, which I might not have purchased otherwise. -------Excellent, if chilling, testimony of the devastating consequences of drug abuse, not only on users but on everyone around them too. I really loved reading this momoir, its honesty, its sense of hope (even if this was sometimes deeply hiden under layers of psychosis, depression, or sense of loss). The way Chris Herren describes calling his wife "crazy" just to cover his own lies brought me to tears.I really liked the fact that the author doesn't blame anyone for his problems: it was he who got himself in that hellhole and, even if he explains the social and personal factors which lead there, he never points to anyone but himself for falling so low. I also liked the fact that he never says a single bad thing about anyone in any context. Even when he didn't like someone he would point to some qualities that person had. He would say: I didn't get along with X but I admired his work ethic. Or, at the time I didn't like Y, but now I got to understand what he was doing and appreciate him for it.The style is not going to win this book any literary award, but in truth, it didn't matter anymore. I would recommend this book to anyone interested in reading about substance abuse and its frightening impact on everyone, users or not.

  • Amber
    2018-12-06 06:08

    **I received this book through Good Reads First Reads**I've given most of the memoirs that I have read lately bad reviews. One in particular I gave a bad review to because the author "name dropped" throughout the entire book. So did Chris Herren, but I'm a big NBA fan and in particular a big Denver Nuggets fan, so I loved the name dropping! I remember when Chris Herren was with the Nuggets, which made this book a little more interesting for me. I appreciated his experience with addiction. I knew fighting addiction was hard, but I didn't realize how complacent you can get when dealing with it. Maybe I thought of it as laziness, but after reading this book, I think of it as the addiction taking over every aspect of your life and even some of your personality.Chris Herren had an amazing basketball career in front of him, but let drugs and alcohol make his choices for him. He could have been that token "crazy white boy" (I'm thinking Chris "Birdman" Anderson), and it makes me sad that such a promising career was lost to addiction. The upside is what Chris Herren has done with his life since receiving treatment. It made me proud to read that he has become involved in so many positive things, especially with kids. Overall, I did like the book. It wasn't amazing, but it kept my attention throughout.

  • Tatasoutsidevoice
    2018-12-02 08:05

    Not the greatest book in the world, but an easy, fast read to pass the time peppered with a few insightful thought-provoking revelations. Very candid - took a lot of courage for the author to be so honest. And if his experiences help just one person, it's worth it IMHO. A new concept for me: maybe it's more therapeutic for the writer to write than it is for the reader to read. Maybe it's not about us."I was in the NBA, I was about to make nearly half a million dollars in my second year, I was married to the love of my life, and if you looked at me that summer, with my own basketball camp, driving around in my black Ford Explorer, money in my pocket, you would have thought i had the perfect life. You would have thought wrong.""I couldn't sleep and my mind was racing and my feet were twitching, and my body felt like it was never going to be able to slow down.""Addiction doesnt destroy you overnight; it's a slow walk down a tortuous hill.""I know what works for me: go to meetings. Let the past go, because to dwell on it only brings regret and guilt. Don't think about the future, because that brings fear. I just stay where I'm supposed to be. I know that if I stay in the moment and take care of my business, I have a chance."

  • Susan
    2018-11-26 08:21

    This book should be on all local high school summer reading lists! I would like for all of my kids to read it. This is an honest look at how a VERY talented kid went down all the wrong roads, knew he was in trouble, but just couldn't get out of the spiral he was in. In fact, the more successful he was financially, the easier it was for him to get deeper and deeper into the harsh world of addiction. I missed Chris Herren's presentation in Medway, so I was excited to find this book at a local bookstore, and I am so glad I did. Despite his sad story, he is one of the lucky ones who survived, and he shares some very important messages along the way, especially his gratefulness for the people who supported him, and the importance of becoming a role model for his own children, and later, for so many others. A cautionary story that struck home with me, and hopefully will with a LOT of young people. When I was a kid, "Go Ask Alice" was the book that scared me about drugs, and given Chris Herren's history w/the Boston Celtics, I hope that this is the book that scares my children, and inspires them as well.

  • Sarah Carney
    2018-12-06 09:13

    When life is low and you have absolutely nothing left, it takes time to be able to stand back up on your feet. In Basketball Junkie, Chris Herren, a superb basketball player, goes on the trail of drugs and loses everything before he can try to reclaim all that he lost. I gave this novel 4 stars due to the inspiring and realistic story and additional information. Nothing is left out in this book which helps you to completely visualize the novel. I didn't give it 5 stars due to the harsh language that constantly popped up due to the type of language spoken by Herren and where he grew up. Although the language is bad, it does add to the story and make it more lifelike. I would recommend it to both women and men at a mature age who can understand the concept of drugs and would not be affected by the language and like basketball. It is a very well written book and has a very good message for teens, especially athletes, so that they can learn lessons and realize the impact of drugs and alcohol in life.

  • LC Piper
    2018-12-12 03:03

    I like to point out the good things first, because quite frankly, reguardless to how bad a book may be, it's still a book and that takes time, effort and is worth of recognition.The writing in Basketball Junkie is fine. It's easy to read, the sentance structure is smooth.I had difficulty with the story due to the profanity. I don't mind too much at the occation speed bump in my reading, but it was too often for me. The story starts right off with drug use which really turned me off. So essentially I was off roading from the fourth sentance. At least the true colors of the writing come out directly. If profanity and base content doesn't bother you then you might enjoy this read. I had to put it down.I hope you accept my rating as my experience. Others may find a different view of the story based upon their comforts.I think mostly I was left dissapointed thinking I might have a nice sweet/nastolgic story of a small town basketball star.

  • Vardan
    2018-11-21 05:13

    Being a basketball player, anything with that sport on a cover attracts my attention. The book "Basketball Junkie: A Memoir" was a rough one to go through, but it was worth it. The story is about a kid, Chris, making it to the NBA, achieving his childhood dream. However, throughout the years his career crumbled apart as he got used to drugs and alcohol. "I knew that they were going to be all right. We all were going to be all right." This quote gave me the idea of how hard it was to cross that barrier of drugs. It is painful, but in the end Chris realized that it was not just for his own good. I loved the writing style in this book. Every basketball game and even just conversations were beautifully written which helped keep reading the book without having to go back and reread. I would recommend this book to young student-athletes who need to focus on their careers and not get on the wrong sides of their road.

  • Timothy
    2018-11-28 07:01

    If you've ever wondered why someone becomes a junkie or continuously throws positives of their lives away, this is a book for you to gain insight into one particular case. There is a universal bottoming of cheating, stealing and lying which comes through and how Chris's addiction becomes the most important focus of his life. His recovery and the chance at life he has now gives hope to anyone that may be struggling.Functionally, the transitions within this book chapters could have been smoother, which the co-author should have fixed. Chris Herren should not be responsible for things such as that because as we learned he was a D student in High School and barely attended any classes while at college. I'm not talking about the grammar, pace or sentence structure but rather how the story moves from one place to another. Bill Reynolds could have done a better job at smoothing those transitions.