Sober Stick Figure is a memoir from stand-up comedian Amber Tozer, chronicling her life as an alcoholic and her eventual recovery-- starting with her first drink at the age of seven--all told with the help of childlike stick figures. Amber writes and illustrates the crazy and harsh truths of being raised by alcoholics, becoming one herself, stagnating in denial for years, and finally getting sober.Read more...
Sober Stick Figure is a memoir from stand-up comedian Amber Tozer, chronicling her life as an alcoholic and her eventual recovery-- starting with her first drink at the age of seven--all told with the help of childlike stick figures. Amber writes and illustrates the crazy and harsh truths of being raised by alcoholics, becoming one herself, stagnating in denial for years, and finally getting sober.
As a teenager, Amber is an overachieving student athlete who copes with her family's alcoholic tragedies by focusing on her achievements. It quickly takes a funny and dark turn when she starts to experiment with booze and ignores the warning signs of alcoholism. Through blackouts, cringe-worthy embarrassments, and pounding hangovers, she convinces herself that she "just likes to party." She leaves her hometown of Pueblo, Colorado to follow her dreams, and ends up in New York City, spending lots of time binge drinking, passing out on trains, and telling jokes on stage. She then moves to Los Angeles, thinking sunshine and show business will save her. Eventually hitting rock bottom, she has a moment of clarity, and knows she has to stop drinking. It's now been seven years since that last drink, and she's ready to tell her story. Sober Stick Figure is adventurous, hilarious, sad, sweet, tragic--and ultimately inspiring.
Publishers Weekly® Reviews
- Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
- Review Date: 2016-04-18
- Reviewer: Staff
Writer and comedian Tozer shares the story of her struggle with alcohol in this appealing memoir accompanied by quirky stick-figure illustrations. Raised in Pueblo, Colo., where there’s not much to do but “breed and drink,” Tozer is surrounded by alcoholics—she takes her first sip of beer at age seven, when her uncle offers a swig from his bottle. Though she parties with friends in her teens, she does well in high school and college, where she focuses on academics and sports. Craving adventure, she relocates to New York City in 1999. Soon, Tozer is drinking more and more; an overthinker, she loves the way alcohol makes her “not feel,” boosting her confidence and relaxation, especially when she becomes involved in stand-up comedy. But the addiction also leads to self-hatred, risky behavior, blackouts, hangovers, and unhealthy relationships, and she begins to realize that she has a serious problem. Nevertheless, when her father dies after suffering for years from alcoholism and depression, Tozer begins drinking even more. After a move to L.A. and a chance meeting with a producer who is sober, she seeks help and enters a 12-step program where she finds the support she needs to overcome the disease. Readers may be particularly drawn to Tozer’s raw and surprisingly humorous story of addiction and recovery. (June)