- Review by Simon Barrett
- Review by John H. Manhold
- Interview at Fascinating Authors
- Review by Crystal
- Review by Karen Stephenson
- Review by Joyce A. Anthony
- Letter from Leo Leddon
- Review by Find drug rehabilitation centers in your area
- Review by mellie80
- Review by Ric Dawson
- Article: Bond strengthens through tough circumstances
- Review by Judy Herzanek
Review by Simon Barrett
Extract from a book review by Simon Barrett:
David Reeves certainly has a story to tell, one that is proof positive that fact is stranger than fiction. Running Away From Me was penned from behind bars, David is currently serving a 14 year sentence for numerous offenses, armed robbery of drug stores and banks, vehicle theft, and lord knows what else. Assuming he continues to keep out of trouble he is slated for a 2012 release. Having read his book I for one do think that he will be a free man in 2012. It is clear that the David Allan Reeves in the early chapters of Running Away From Me is not the same guy who wrote this book. …
I found Running Away From Me to be a very revealing book, and one that must have taken great courage to write. It was also a very laborious process. At the time of writing David had no access to a computer, he wrote the book initially longhand, then typed it out on a typewriter in the prison library. He then sent it piecemeal to his mother who entered it into a computer format that the publisher could work with.
His mother actually includes a short section at the end of the book which in itself is most revealing. She does not condone her sons actions, but does continue to stand by him, and I am sure will be a pillar of strength to David when he is finally released. She has already lost one son to drugs, she is not going to lose David.
Review by John H. Manhold
Extract from a book review by John H. Manhold:
Running Away From Me, although not a pleasant book, is an interesting read as it graphically presents the roller coaster ride of a drug addict as he pursues a gradual progression in his habit, and describes the dire results to the individual and his family. The descriptions of prison life at the various levels, from local jails to county, and then government run, also produce chilling pictures not easily forgotten.
Interview at Fascinating Authors
FASCINATING AUTHORS: What excites you most about your book topic? Why did you choose it?
Author: My book is about my drug addiction and how it led me into criminality. I felt the need to explain my inexplicable behavior. I’ve made some horrible choices and have hurt people with those choices, and I’ve wrestled with the question of whether or not I am a bad person. Regardless of the answer to that question, I know that I have become and will continue to become a better person. I hope my book can help people before they travel too far down that dark road that I once was on.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: How long did the book take you from start to finish?
Author: It took a year and a half to write the first rough draft. I didn’t force anything out, I just let it flow as it came to me. Sometimes it just poured forth and other times it just dribbled out a little at a time. It took another six months to revise and make several rounds of corrections. So it’s taken two years altogether.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: What aspect of writing the book did you find challenging?
Author: Since I was writing a memoir, the most challenging part was to decide what to add or what to leave out. I wanted to be totally honest, but I also didn’t want to hurt anyone by revealing too much. And some parts were painful to write about such as my brother’s death. But one of the benefits I received from writing my book was much needed healing. I had to look at some things I didn’t like about myself and figure out how to put that down on paper.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: What surprised you the most about the book writing process?
Author: I’m surprised at how much it has helped me grow. In the twelve step groups, there is a saying that we are only as sick as our secrets. Opening myself up and exposing all my faults has allowed me to feel better about myself and has removed a heavy burden from my shoulders. So it was more than a book writing process for me — it was a healing process. I was surprised at the amount of insight I’ve gained into the addiction process.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: Did you have any favorite experiences when writing your book?
Author: The best experiences I had was when I got nothing but positive feedback from the people who I had let read what I had written. I only told a few people that I was writing a book and I let them read it. They told other people and pretty soon I had a lot of people wanting to read my book without ever having really told anyone that I was writing one. So that let me know I written something worth reading.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: What do you hope readers will gain from reading your book?
Author: I hope people will have a better understanding of what addiction is really about and what it can lead to if untreated. I’ve read lots of other addiction memoirs and none of the authors of those books sunk as low as I did. I want people to know that drug addiction and alcoholism is hell on earth for the addict and his family as well. Many people suffer from this affliction much longer than they should because they or their loved ones don’t really know what they’re dealing with.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: What projects are you currently working on?
Author: I’m still in prison, so I’m still journaling and writing and reading everything I can get my hands on about addiction. I’m working on some ideas for another book, but I haven’t settled on anything yet. For the time being, I’m working on promoting this book.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: Is writing your sole career?
Author: Writing is the only thing I can do right now. I look forward to working in the field of addiction treatment when I’m released from prison. I’m looking at the different ways that I can be of use, whether it’s writing, counseling, speaking, or whatever else I may be able to do.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: Did you research for your books, or did you write from experience?
Author: There was no research involved in what I wrote. After I read “A Million Little Pieces” by James Frey, I told myself that I could do better than that….and I wouldn’t have to make any of it up! So all I needed to do was put my memories into words.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: How did you come up with your title?
Author: I had a couple of other titles I was working with, but nothing I was really happy with. I was going to use “Darkest Before Dawn” but it seemed to be too much of a cliche. Then I woke up at three o’clock one morning with “Running Away From Me” in my head. I liked it because running has been a big part of my life, and also, I just have to go with anything that comes to me in that manner.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: What books have influenced you the most?
Author: As for fiction, I love Dostoevsky. “Crime and Punishment” is my favorite. “The Brothers Karamazov” is also great. I’ve read it twice and plan to read it again because there’s so much in there, I’d never be able to get everything out of it in just two readings. I don’t really read for entertainment. When I finish a book, I expect to know something that I didn’t know before. I like autobiographies and memoirs, especially the ones about people triumphing over hardships. “Night” by Elie Wiesel comes to mind. Anything dealing with the dark side of human nature is interesting to me.
FASCINATING AUTHORS: Who was your publisher and why did you choose them?
Author: I chose Trafford because of their spotless reputation and they offered the all-around best package, including world-wide distribution.
Review by Crystal
Extract from a book review by Crystal at Thrifty and Frugal Living:
I love to read, but I generally do not like reading nonfiction and particularly biographies. Knowinging this, I still requested a copy of Running Away From Me by David Allan Reeves. There was something about the book that intrigued me. Once I got the book, I could not put it down (literally, I was cooking sphaghetti and reading at the same time one night).
I recommend this book to anyone that has drug problems, knows someone with drug problems, thinks that their life is miserable or just wants a good book to read.
Source: Thrifty and Frugal Living.
Review by Karen Stephenson
Extract from a book review by Karen Stephenson:
David is now four years into sobriety. He has courageously written a compelling book that may not only help an addict struggling with recovery, but it will helped those who are trying to support a loved one through addictions. This is a must-read for anyone who wants to obtain an understanding of how the mind of an addict works.
Joyce A. Anthony
Extract from a book review by Joyce A. Anthony:
This is a book that anyone who has a pre-teen or teenager should take the time to read. It shows how easily a parent can give a child everything they think is necessary, and still not keep the streets from claiming that child. For anyone struggling to understand a drug addict in their life, this book will give you a greater understanding of how the mind of an addict works. Lastly, for all those caught up in the trap of addiction, this book offers a glimpse of where your path is heading and offers you the chance to make a u-turn before you get there.
From a letter by Leo Leddon:
Subject: Running Away From Me
I told you in a previous email that I was going to order your book. I did as promised and just a few minutes ago finished reading.
I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I feel it was a bitter/sweet sort of read.
I was amazed at the detail, anxious a great deal of the time, and exhausted at others.
I have read all of John Grisham’s books and have felt they were the type of book that you do not want to put down. I would put yours in the same category.
You mentioned in one of the early paragraphs that you had a few people that would write to you. You indicated that your friends had fallen by the wayside, in my words, I assume because of your circumstances. If you are still looking for a penpal, I would be honored if you don’t mind exchanging letter with a former teacher with whom you probably have little in common, except for our mutual love of music.
I would also encourage you to keep up your jounaling efforts. I look forward to Running Away From Me, Part 2.
I look forward to hearing from you. Take care.
Leo Leddon, April 25, 2010
Review by: Find drug rehabilitation centers in your area
Extract from a review:
Running Away From Me is a must read book for anyone suffering from addiction or who has a loved one suffering from this disease. It tells David’s story of his battles with addiction and the lengths he went to in feeding it.
From a review by mellie80:
I stumbled across this book after I realized David and I are from the same small town. I know people that have suffered or are currently suffering from addiction. Since being around addiction virtually all my life, I have become interested in addictions. Especially the way addiction turns the addict into someone other than the person their loved ones at one time knew. I highly recommend this book to everyone! It’s an easy read and you will get hooked. I had a very hard time putting this book down! The reason I recommend it to everyone is because not only is it comforting to read while you or someone you love is struggling with addiction, it’s also very informative to those who aren’t familiar with addiction.
Thank you David, for being so honest.
Source : Incredible book!!.
From Ric Dawson:
Message: I have just finished reading your book, what an incredible journey, i believe this book will help many people stay away from drugs, I hope the next year flies by until you are free again and I believe you have the strength to stay clean now. Keep running, running man and keep your head up your time to live will be coming soon.
Source : an email.
Bond strengthens through tough circumstances
Article by Ashley Toland-Trice:
He hopes by telling his story he canscare the hell out of anyonefrom using drugs.
Not everyone who uses will go to the extremes I went to, but why take the chance? Why play Russian roulette?he said.
Though Barbara is still “heartbroken” over her son’s actions, a mother’s love endures. She is “very proud” of his recovery and of his writing.
Source : Lagniappe: Something Extra For Mobile.
Review by Judy Herzanek
The Best True Story Of Addiction and Recovery I’ve Read In A Very Long Time
I’ve read quite a few books on addiction and recovery over the past years. Once in a while there is one that just “hits me” in a special way. This is one of those books. I didn’t want it to end. And I certainly want to follow David as he continues his amazing journey of recovery.
The thing that really hit home to me was the way David’s story began … no abuse, no trauma, no neglect or divorce. His story, like that of many others illustrates the insidiousness of addiction and how it creeps into a person’s life and takes hold with a vengeance.
I can never sit back and say that I’ve completely recovered from my addiction. It has been with me for so long that it now defines who I am. ~David Allen Reeves
Written with brutal honesty and passion, David illustrates the reality of how strong this obsession can be. The way it completely takes over a person’s entire life… mentally, physically and spiritually is mind-boggling. The reader follows him from his casual use, to resorting to actions that would previously have been unthinkable.
As we journey with David we learn firsthand of his struggles and life-lessons.
On the circle of addiction:
More pain equals more drugs equals more pain equals more drugs, ad infinitum.
On his many relapses:
What is wrong with me? Do I have a split personality or something? Am I Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde? I’m a walking contradiction… I’m strong and I’m weak. I’m smart, but I act stupid. I want to quit and I want to use. I have a demon and an angel on my shoulders, and they take turns controlling my thoughts and actions.
There is a smell in these places, a mix of sweat, piss, and disinfectant that gets in your skin and stays there. If you get a whiff of it years later, all those feeling and emotions come back and slap you in the face. It’s the smell of condemnation.
I was spineless and pitiful. I was tough enough to take a gun and stick it in people’s faces to get what I wanted, but the thought of even a few days in prison had me whimpering and whining.
On learning to deal with life:
I was incapable of dealing with life on life’s terms. Life is a series of ups and downs, and I reached for the highs and was unskilled to deal with the lows. There is no above without a below, no light without darkness, and no good without bad. I had to learn to accept it and deal with it.
On hitting bottom:
For the first ten years I didn’t think I had a problem and saw no reason to quit. For the second ten years I knew I had a problem. But even after several attempts to quit, I couldn’t do it. For the first ten years, drug use was fun and exciting. For the second ten years it was pure hell on earth. For the first ten years, I could have quit if I wanted to. For the second ten years, it was too late.
I believe this book is perfect for those looking to really understand what it is like to be in the grip of addiction — particularly for family members and friends of an alcoholic/addict.
I would caution that giving this book to your addict to read may not be the best idea. The graphic description of drug use, thoughts and feelings before, during and after using are so well-written, vivid and real — too real for a recovering addict to read.
Lastly, the best thing about this story is that it gives families and friends hope. David says it best:
That small sliver of hope has grown into a volcano of joy, and if I can rebound from the pit of hell I was in, I believe anyone can. Saying I was hooked is inadequate; I was impaled and could not get loose without becoming self-destructive.
If it is really the darkest before dawn, then the sun must be about ready to come up.
David will celebrate 7 years clean and sober on October 15, 2011
A wonderful companion book to “Why Don’t They Just Quit?, by Joe Herzanek.
Dir. Creative Development and Marketing/Changing Lives Foundation
Kindle Edition: Why Don’t They Just Quit?