Review| Heroine – Mindy McGinnis

After reading Be Not Far From Me earlier this year, I was really curious about Mindy McGinnis’ other books. Heroine was one I’ve seen around for awhile and saw that it was available on Storytel. I can tell you that this author really knows how to suck you into a story!

I do want to start off by saying that this book has major trigger warnings. Before you read this book, you should know that drug use/abuse, overdosing, addiction and even goes into detail how these drugs are used. Be warned when you pick it up!

Review| Heroine – Mindy McGinnis

An Amazon Best Book of the Month! A captivating and powerful exploration of the opioid crisis—the deadliest drug epidemic in American history—through the eyes of a college-bound softball star. Edgar Award-winning author Mindy McGinnis delivers a visceral and necessary novel about addiction, family, friendship, and hope.
When a car crash sidelines Mickey just before softball season, she has to find a way to hold on to her spot as the catcher for a team expected to make a historic tournament run. Behind the plate is the only place she’s ever felt comfortable, and the painkillers she’s been prescribed can help her get there.
The pills do more than take away pain; they make her feel good.
With a new circle of friends—fellow injured athletes, others with just time to kill—Mickey finds peaceful acceptance, and people with whom words come easily, even if it is just the pills loosening her tongue.
But as the pressure to be Mickey Catalan heightens, her need increases, and it becomes less about pain and more about want, something that could send her spiraling out of control.

Heroine by Mindy McGinnis
Published by Katherine Tegen Books on 12/03/2019
Genres: Contemporary
Pages: 419
Format: Audiobook


I am not a wasted person. I am not prowling the streets. I am not an addict. I am a girl spinning her locker combination. I am a girl who got a B on her math test. I am a girl who has two holes on the inside of her arm, but they do not tell the whole story of me.

Heroine is only the second book I’ve read by Mindy McGinnis, but I’m impressed with how realistic she makes her books feel. I can honestly say I’ve never read anything like these books before. Mindy McGinnis takes realistic subjects and takes them on in such an honest way. Nothing is made easy and she definitely doesn’t avoid the hard parts of the subjects she chooses.

I honestly couldn’t put this book down. I needed to know how Mickey’s story was going to play out. It starts out with Mindy being in a horrific accident that leaves her with a really bad hip injury. Being a promising athlete, this is the worst thing that could’ve happened to her. The pain is terrible and she gets pain pills. If only the story ended there.

Heroine shows us the journey of what drugs can really do to you. While I understand that sometimes pain is unbearable, the medications given these days have such huge consequences and I really wish the system would keep a better eye on them. Mickey starts using more to make the pain less, so she can push herself more. She is determined to be walking before training starts again. In the end that is what happens, but at what cost?

That’s when things started getting back for Mickey. By giving herself more and more to keep the pain away, at a certain point the dosage she has just doesn’t cut it. This is where Heroine gets even more intense. It shows us the downward spiral of needing more and finding the funds to buy it. Dealing with dealers and maybe not the nicest people you want to meet. I’ve read stories about drug use gone wrong, but reading a book like this made it even more real. How it goes from a higher dose of pills to using a needle and heroin. It’s scary how fast that goes.

What I also thought was really interesting was the relationship between Mickey and her family and friends. One of her friends was in the accident with her and doesn’t use pain pills. Things can go so differently. Being adopted and having her parents divorced made this story even more complicated. Even though Mickey doesn’t see herself as an addict, it’s easy to see in this story how she manipulates and hides a lot of things. How “sneaky” she got (I’m not really sure that’s a good word to describe it). I was holding my breathe through a lot of this story just waiting for her to be caught.

It’s hard to really describe my opinion for this book. I think it’s important that books like Heroine are around, because it’s something that unfortunately happens so much in our world today. It doesn’t seem dangerous to take something after a major injury, but it’s not always clear how easy it can be for people to get addicted. Heroine isn’t an easy read and doesn’t end all fluffy and sunshine either. This story hurts and I think it would’ve been weird if it had ended with rainbows and sunshine. Drug abuse isn’t a fluffy and happy subject. Mindy McGinnis is an amazing writer! I’m still thinking about this book and don’t think that will change anytime soon!

When I started Heroine I was definitely expecting an intense read, but this one was even more so than I expected. I have to say this wasn’t an easy review to write, because it’s so hard to put down in words what my reading experience was like. Mindy McGinnis isn’t afraid of touching the harder subjects. I’ll definitely be checking out her other books soon. Have you read anything by Mindy McGinnis? Let me know in the comments!

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