Drinking Games: A Memoir (St. Martin's Press)
Part memoir and part social critique, Drinking Games is about how one woman drank and lived— and how, for her, the last drink was just the beginning.
On paper, Sarah Levy’s life was on track. She was 28, living in New York City, working a great job, and socializing every weekend. But Sarah had a secret: her relationship with alcohol was becoming toxic. And only she could save herself.
Drinking Games explores the role alcohol has in our formative years, and what it means to opt out of a culture completely enmeshed in drinking. It’s an examination of what our short-term choices about alcohol do to our long-term selves and how they challenge our ability to be vulnerable enough to discover what we really want in life.
Candid and dynamic, this book speaks to the all-consuming cycle of working hard, playing harder, and trying to look perfect while you’re at it. Sarah takes us by the hand through her personal journey with blackouts, dating, relationships, wellness culture, startups, social media, friendship, and self-discovery.
In this intimate and darkly funny memoir, she stumbles through her twenties, explores the impact alcohol has on relationships and identity, and shows us how life’s messiest moments can end up being the most profound.
Sarah Levy is a writer based in Los Angeles by way of New York. Her work examines the intersection of sobriety, relationships, and identity and has been featured in The New York Times, New York Magazine/The Cut, Cosmopolitan, Glamour, Vogue, Elle, and other publications. She holds a B.A. in Literary Arts from Brown University and pursued a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing from The New School. Drinking Games is her first book.
Coco Mellors grew up in London and New York. She has an MFA from New York University, where she was a recipient of the Goldwater Fellowship. She currently lives in Los Angeles, California with her husband.
Praise for Drinking Games -
"Bracing and insightful...offers equal measures of introspection and hope. This emotional excavation will inspire anyone navigating addiction." –– Publishers Weekly
“Candid, straightforward, and full of introspection. Levy successfully articulates the emotional roller coaster of being drunk and being sober through important life moments and shows her readers how fulfilling a sober life can be.” ––Booklist
"Poignant. [DRINKING GAMES] reads like an intimate conversation between friends." –– Kirkus
"With raw honesty...Levy's path to sobriety becomes a lens through which she reflects on drinking culture and what it means to be sober within that...in her vulnerability and willingness to share the highs and lows of her relationship with alcohol, Levy invites readers to consider what might not be serving them in this moment--and what might be possible on the other side of whatever habit is holding them back from true freedom." –– Shelf Awareness
"Sarah Levy's Drinking Games is more than one woman's captivating story of letting go of a destructive relationship to alcohol. This up close look at Levy's life before, during, and after her decision to stop drinking alcohol offers readers a glimpse at all of the ways a life can transform once sobriety is in place. By turns hilarious and harrowing, Levy generously shows readers how she left behind a party girl lifestyle filled with hollow relationships and unfulfilling work and built a sober life filled with comfort, care, and deep, authentic attachments to herself and others. For anyone who fears that sobriety equals stagnation, boredom, and a stunted life shuffling from one dank basement recovery meeting to the next, prepare to have your mind blown. Levy's Drinking Games is a must-read for anyone curious about the many ways in which sobriety can transform a life." –– Christie Tate, New York Times bestselling author of Group
"Thought-provoking and fantastic. Drinking Games explores both the vulnerable emotional core of one woman's relationship with alcohol and how empowering it is to walk away. A terrific read!” –– Cat Marnell, New York Times bestselling author of How to Murder Your Life
“Like Sarah Levy, by giving up the battle with booze, I have found a new world of self-respect and grace. I know that Levy’s wise and honest memoir, Drinking Games, will connect with readers who are asking themselves if their life might be a bit brighter and truer without alcohol. May we all find what Levy (and I) was searching for in every cocktail: ‘the deepest, purest, and most genuine belief that everything was going to be okay.’” –– Amanda Eyre Ward, New York Times bestselling author of The Jetsetters and The Sober Lush
"Sarah Levy gives sobriety a makeover in Drinking Games. With the warmth, wit, and wisdom of the venerable friend we all desperately wanted, Sarah draws you into how alcohol defined her relationships with body image, the wellness industry, and her family, and the clarity she gained when she found sobriety. Drinking Games packs a punch: not the gross alcoholic kind but the kind that leaves you feeling breathless. This book should be required reading for every scared person wondering, should I stop now? From hangovers, to blackouts, to the joys of new beginnings, Sarah gives vulnerable and concrete advice for anyone worried that sobriety means an end to all things fun. Spoiler alert: it’s not." –– Erin Lee Carr, author of All That You Leave Behind