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Reviewed by Jamie Lee Wandel for Readers' Favorite
Bottled Memories by David Ritter is a collection of poems about the author’s journey from addiction through recovery. The author recounts many of the pitfalls of alcohol addiction in a lyrical way that felt like they could be country songs. There is a casual quality to the language that makes them feel more sincere. Themes of loneliness and fleeting contentment repeat throughout the first part of the compilation. David Ritter takes the reader along on a ride with his affair with alcohol that feels familiar. This book’s target audience seems to be fellow addiction recoverers. Some of the poems are reflections of others that have suffered through similar experiences and did not make it out. Some of the poems reveal the tragic consequences of drunken choices.
This collection of poems are honest reflections of addiction and so they aren’t as enjoyable for those that can’t relate to that struggle. The book also isn’t quite as appropriate for non-Christians since some of the poems in Bottled Memories include prayers. Christian faith permeates the book in the quotes from scriptures David Ritter has inserted at the beginning and end. I think that Christian readers would really appreciate these details. This book could be perfect for the right person. I would gift this book to a friend or relative that may need some inspiration, or even better, someone that has a history of addiction, which can be a sensitive topic. These poems show the struggle and disappointment of alcoholism without diminishing the struggle. Bottled Memories would make a thoughtful and encouraging gift.