Saving Bobby

Heroes and Heroin in One Small Community

Non-Fiction - Memoir
368 Pages
Reviewed on 05/18/2018
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Author Biography

I didn’t go into my nephew Bobby’s recovery with any professional experience, but it just stood to reason that if I wanted to help my loved one, I should surround him with an atmosphere of full disclosure and transparency, a supportive place where he could not hide or be hidden. Only later did I realize how many try to conceal their family’s struggle with addiction, isolating themselves and causing undue stress and shame. Addiction is not a parenting failure or something to be embarrassed about. This hiding subtly reinforces that the addiction is a secret and therefore shameful.
As much as I would like to pretend there is no addiction in my family, there is. Addiction is a disease and, like breast cancer or heart disease, it can run in families. Pretending otherwise will not make it go away.
For years, I watched as my family hid from the stark reality of addiction. My family, like millions of other families, felt that talking about addiction openly would be airing our dirty laundry, but I never bought into it. All those years of secrecy had simply allowed succeeding generations to be blindsided by their vulnerability to addiction.
Secrets make you sick, my friend. Reach out and find your community—whether you are the caregiver, the recoverer, or the next-door neighbor.
There can be no denying: the best way to help those that are recovering is to recognize that we are all in this together.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Mamta Madhavan for Readers' Favorite

Saving Bobby: Heroes and Heroin in One Small Community by Renee Hodges is an insightful book for all readers who deal with people with addiction. Bobby’s story is heartrending and chronicles his journey from an addict having suicidal tendencies to getting himself back on track. The book is also the story of his Aunt Renee, who took him in during his lowest phase and worked together with him to get him back on the road to recovery. The story is about love, healing, help, determination, and redemption, and will create an impact on the lives of many who are traversing the same path. It is a wonderful book that sheds light on many aspects of life; the difficulty of overcoming addiction, the stigma of shame attached to it, and emotional scarring.

This book is a must-read for everyone as it opens our eyes to addiction and the shame associated with it. Addiction is a disease and the book encourages everyone to reach out to their neighbors and help them recover. The author speaks about the topic extensively without keeping any secrets. I love her decision to be honest about addiction, making readers understand that healing does not work around shame and secrecy. The Book Club questions at the end of the book make it useful for interactive sessions in communities while discussing addiction and dealing with addicts. The questions will make readers ponder on what they have read and the importance of reaching out. The narration is excellent, honest, and straightforward, and will connect with readers.

MizLaTee

Saving Bobby presents an important view of addiction recovery for families. When a young adult comes out of a rehab center, there is much more work to be done. And often, it can't be done in isolation. Rene Hodges' book helps point the way in a realistic, sometimes heartbreaking way. But it is ever resilient and fierce in the re-telling. A bold step forward, an invaluable contribution to those caught in the void of this country's opioid crisis.