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From the team that brought you the New York Times bestselling Dry comes a “gritty and unflinching” (Booklist) thriller that proves when gods play games, even love is a lie.
The freeway is coming.
It will cut the neighborhood in two. Construction has already started, pushing toward this corridor of condemned houses and cracked concrete with the momentum of the inevitable. Yet there you are, in the fifth house on the left, fighting for your life.
The victim of the bet between two manufactured gods: the seductive and lethal Roxy (Oxycontin), who is at the top of her game, and the smart, high-achieving Addison (Adderall), who is tired of being the helpful one, and longs for a more dangerous, less wholesome image. The wager—a contest to see who can bring their mark to “the Party” first—is a race to the bottom of a rave that has raged since the beginning of time. And you are only human, dazzled by the lights and music. Drawn by what the drugs offer—tempted to take that step past helpful to harmful…and the troubled places that lie beyond.
But there are two I. Rameys—Isaac, a soccer player thrown into Roxy’s orbit by a bad fall and a bad doctor and Ivy, his older sister, whose increasing frustration with her untreated ADHD leads her to renew her acquaintance with Addy.
Which one are you?
About the Author
Neal Shusterman is the New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty award-winning books for children, teens, and adults, including the Unwind dystology, the Skinjacker trilogy, Downsiders, and Challenger Deep, which won the National Book Award. Scythe, the first book in his latest series, Arc of a Scythe, is a Michael L. Printz Honor Book. He also writes screenplays for motion pictures and television shows. Neal is the father of four, all of whom are talented writers and artists themselves. Visit Neal at StoryMan.com and Facebook.com/NealShusterman.
Jarrod Shusterman is the New York Times bestselling coauthor of novel Dry, which he is adapting for a major Hollywood film studio with Neal Shusterman. He is also the coauthor of the accoladed novel Roxy. His books have all received critical acclaim and multiple starred reviews. Sofi Lapuente and Jarrod are partners in every sense of the word, with love and multiculturalism as an ethos—living between Madrid, Spain, and Los Angeles, California. If they are not working, it means they’re eating. For behind-the-scenes author content and stupidly funny videos, follow them on Instagram and TikTok @SofiandJarrod.
"The novel feels like a stage drama from the tense first chapter to the tragic end...[p]owerful and chilling."
— Kirkus Reviews
"This allegorical take on the opioid epidemic provides an utterly unique point of view on the lives of those struggling with drug dependencies. Surprisingly, this approach does not water down the stark realities besetting Ivy and Isaac as they sink into addiction. Rather, it captures the drugs’ allure, from granting small benefits and initial highs, before taking the reader through the horrible spiral that addiction can entail. Gritty and unflinching, this book portrays the opioid crisis in a way older YA readers can feel and understand."
If the premise remains nebulous and ambiguous at times, it imbues the plot with elements of mystery and intrigue, coupled with interesting characters and the timely issues of the opioid crisis and other addictions.
— The Horn Boook Magazine
The Shustermans’ depiction of each sibling’s spiral into dependence and misuse of prescribed medications sheds a critical light on the ongoing drug epidemic, subverting stereotypes about substance abuse while exploring each drug’s potential to help and to hinder. Ages 14–up. (Nov.)
— Publishers Weekly
* "VERDICT Highly recommended. Neal and Jarrod Shusterman have outdone themselves from their last thriller, Dry."
— School Library Journal, starred review