My Fair Junkie

A Memoir of Getting Dirty and Staying Clean
Narrated by: Amy Dresner
Length: 7 hrs and 58 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (650 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In the tradition of Blackout and Permanent Midnight, a darkly funny and revealing debut memoir of one woman's 20-year battle with sex, drugs, and alcohol addiction, and what happens when she finally emerges on the other side.

Growing up in Beverly Hills, Amy Dresner had it all: a top-notch private school education, the most expensive summer camps, and even a weekly clothing allowance. But at 24, she started dabbling in meth in San Francisco and unleashed a fiendish addiction monster. Soon, if you could snort it, smoke it, or have sex with, she did.

Smart and charming, with Daddy's money to fall back on, she sort of managed to keep it all together. But on Christmas Eve 2011, all of that changed when, high on Oxycontin, she stupidly "brandished" a bread knife on her husband and was promptly arrested for "felony domestic violence with a deadly weapon".

Within months, she found herself in the psych ward - and then penniless, divorced, and looking at 240 hours of court-ordered community service. For two years, assigned to a Hollywood Boulevard "chain gang", she swept up syringes (and worse) as she bounced from rehabs to halfway houses, all while struggling with sobriety, sex addiction, and starting over in her 40s.

In the tradition of Orange Is the New Black and Jerry Stahl's Permanent Midnight, Amy Dresner's My Fair Junkie is an insightful, darkly funny, and shamelessly honest memoir of one woman's battle with all forms of addiction, hitting rock bottom, and forging a path to a life worth living.

©2017 Amy Dresner (P)2017 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"Like Carrie Fisher's 1987 autobiographical novel, Postcards from the Edge, and Mary Karr's 2009 memoir, Lit, Amy Dresner's story of addiction and recovery, My Fair Junkie: A Memoir of Getting Dirty and Stay Clean (Hachette Books), is one for the ages." ( Elle)
"Effortlessly candid and wryly written chronicle of a life hijacked by drugs, booze, and bad behavior. As a noted West Hollywood stand-up comedian and addiction journalist, she handles this complex tale with wit.... A hard-knocks addiction memoir buoyed with humor and insight." ( Kirkus)

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if you don't read this I'll brandish a bread knife

I have never written a review for a book before but felt like I had to for Amy. This book is incredible. if you have any toe into addiction or sobriety in anyway, be it you or family/friends family members this is a must read. addiction is so layered, mental illiness is real, addiction can happen to anyone. People that suffer need compassion, need understanding, need help. No one is immune. she helps to show that addiction shows no discrimination, that mental health is really a serious thing that we should address and you will love her and root for her as much as your own best friend. Amy thank you. you're a gorgeous human being. and so real. thank you for showing me I can be real. I can be ME.

17 people found this helpful

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Best book an addiction I have read in years!

An amazing account of Amy’s spiral down into addiction. Heartbreaking, gritty, gut wrenching & brutally honest! I love the author reads the book & she’s got a great sense of humor to boot. The brutally honest truth about addiction & the courage it takes to recover.

9 people found this helpful

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Oy vey

I mean this book jumped around so much that I had no idea sometimes where she was – married, doing community service, with one guy or another on one drug or another… It had absolutely no organized story.

I was captivated I listened until the end which says a lot because sometimes I don’t, but as far as story and overall enjoyment, I was more confused than anything and just stuck it out to see how it ended. Which was a huge disappointment anyway. Not impressed

6 people found this helpful

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Ping pong ball

This book jumps around like a ping pong ball. I couldn’t keep track if we were in the present or past most of the time. I tried really hard to continue to listen to this book. I couldn’t even finish it. The narration was very good though. The story was just all over the place.

4 people found this helpful

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OPEN AND HONEST

I would give this 10 stars if it were an option! Amy, you absolutely moved me to tears and laughter and frequent head nods when you said something that I totally related to and understood exactly how you felt! You are a inspiration to many hopeless addicts (including myself) that there is a better way and God doesn’t make mistakes! You tell your story in the most vulnerable way ever and people need to hear shit like that! Addiction is real life and there is no sugar coating shit if you want to get clean and healthy! I wish I could meet Amy and just kick for a day, would probably be the most amazing day ever! Great story for those who need to hear someone else’s experience, strength, and hope!

3 people found this helpful

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Real!

I love how she kept it real the entire book! It was a process and made me understand what an addict goes through.

2 people found this helpful

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Inspiring

Love the honestly! Gives me hope I am also in recovery! Thanks girl! Very inspiring!

2 people found this helpful

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WILL Listen Again and Again!

What made the experience of listening to My Fair Junkie the most enjoyable?

The Author's narration drew me in from the first chapter and her amazing story kept me listening almost non-stop until the very end.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Amy Dresner is a complex, raw, humorous and finally sober storyteller.

Have you listened to any of Amy Dresner’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

This is the first book of Amy Dresner's that I have heard of, but would definitely read/listen to more!

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I couldn't get enough of this book. As soon as it was over, I started it from the beginning again. I am now on listen number 3. I read and listen to countless books on alcoholism, recovery and self help, but this is the first time I have listened repeatedly. Fantastic story, narration, and newfound hope.

Any additional comments?

This is an audible purchase you will not regret!

2 people found this helpful

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Terrible

I've read all the junkie highlight books and this is not one of them. Nothing cool, nothing enlightening just the memoir of a self hating drug abuser.

7 people found this helpful

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Honest, Funny, Hilarious, Sad and so Amazing!

This book is brutally honest, And all around so soooo good! I could not stop listening! Highly recommend

1 person found this helpful

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  • Robbie Kelly
  • 11-04-18

Easily the best book about addiction and recovery

I loved this book and would recommend this to anybody regardless of whatever their experience or knowledge of addiction. The author highlights the insanity of addiction and how hard recovery can be, yet manages to tell her story in a way that is brutally honest and funny.

The author's narration brings the story to life in such a way that I couldn't stop listening to it, I finished this in 3 sittings, which is unusual for me.

You will not be disapointed if you buy this book.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 09-06-18

Authentic

one of the most brutal, honest and authentic recovery memoirs around. highly recommended. Buy it

1 person found this helpful

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  • tillymint
  • 06-16-20

A visceral, stirring listen.

I loved it. Amy is a fierce writer; she says the unsaid things... I have nothing but respect for her journey. Some extraordinary and vivid insights into the mind of a recovering addict. She also took the time to reply to me when I DM'd her on Twitter.

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  • L Cairns
  • 03-05-20

Annoying attempts at accents!!

Narrator voice went through me! I wish I'd have read and not listened to it

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  • Stephanie
  • 11-28-19

One of the Best!

A laugh out loud, cringing, painfully honest memoir that was as entertaining as it was relatable. I especially love it when books are read by the author and Amy’s reading gave the story her personality and wit, it makes the funny parts even more funny and the hard parts more real. Thanks for writing and reading this book!

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  • Carol
  • 11-08-19

Struggled

Not for me and I didn't warm to Amy or her struggles. Probably for a younger generation.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 09-29-19

Very disappointed!

I am first going to say that this book was the reason I downloaded Audible. I would not be a critical person and i would call myself easily enough please but i could not finish this book. I found the author/narrator to only be a selfish, self entitled woman who's story is far from what i imagined. Her constant need to curse and sound like a spoiled little teenager made me more angry than inspired. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad she turned her life around and managed to accomplish this book but for me it was such a let down. I was dissapointed that I used my 1 credit on this after only managing to get through 5 chapters. Aplogies for my bluntness but this reeks of a women who had life too easy and her own words reflect that.

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  • Denim76
  • 04-25-19

Dark yet funny

this is one of the best books I've read for a while her truth is so identifiable to us folks that struggle. Her voice is easy to listen to and her humour comes across well. It's a good read and recommended

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  • lucy weaver
  • 04-18-19

5 star book

An excellent read. Thoroughly enjoyed it. Witty gritty and jaw dropping. A tough subject but delivered with humour

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  • Jarryd
  • 01-17-20

Helped me understand a junkie's mind.

Inside her head, it's an absolute mess. Rage, love, need and impulse. And it keeps going, and going.

I've encountered and lived with three Junkies in my life. I tried to help, lost cars, money, time and faith in people and family. I never made a difference, and they always needed more. Why? Why did it go like this? What could I have done?

This book finally satisfied my need for resolution.

They dont follow our way of thinking. The unspoken rules of conversation and expectation dont exist. They exist in the moment, and all planning is meaningless.

It's up to them to find their rite of passage and learn to help themselves. Then join the rest of us as adults.

This is an amazing, and heartbreaking book I needed to hear.

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  • Brigette
  • 09-08-19

Finally a book about sobriety that doesn’t make you want to chug a bottle

Amy Dresner is an incredibly witty woman and hearing her journey from the lowest moment to becoming kind of okay is a treat!

What? If you’re the kind of person who needs to hear recovery ends in a triumphant moment and gets tied up with silk bow at the end —where nothing was ever imperfect again—I don’t know what to tell you other than I don’t buy that narrative, and I don’t think you should either.

That said the book it’s not all doom and gloom either, but it does honestly illustrates that people work for sobriety.
They make mistakes and they keep going until making that choice everyday is easier the longer you try and if you can’t be honest with yourself and laugh at the weird parts of life like the word “Bagina” it’s going to kill you.

Addiction is not obfuscated nor glamourised.
There is no miraculous moment where someone swoops in and saves her. You see her slow morph from someone struggling getting clean for one day to her 3 years sober anniversary. She learns to be more comfortable with who she is, what she’s been and she they could be.

Amy Dresner takes you to hell and back and you will LOVE it!

(And in a sexy voice to boot)

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  • Liv P
  • 11-25-18

Spectacular & Sobering

Amy has an extraordinary story to tell, and tells it extremely well. I’m thrilled I got to hear it told by her. Highly recommend this memoir of a life that danced the edges, and proves that we should never give up on addicts. What a woman!

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  • Anonymous User
  • 10-19-18

Brutally honest book

This was such an honest, raw and funny look at what it's like to be an addict. I loved it. Thank you Amy for sharing, you're a star.