Heroine by Mindy McGinnis

In Heroine, by Mindy McGinnis, readers see just how fast one can go from the highest of highs to the lowest of lows when Mickey Catalan, a young woman who is excelling on and off the field, faces tragedy. 

A car accident involving Mickey and her best friend Carolina, another important player on the school’s softball team, leaves both with serious injuries and their futures as athletes in question - including the scholarships and recognition that come with athletic success. The differences stop there, as Carolina’s recovery is unhampered while Mickey finds herself becoming more and more addicted to the painkillers she was prescribed following surgery. 

Mickey’s fears of never fully recovering, which are agitated by normal setbacks, continue to fuel her need for the opioids that make her feel good, maybe even better than before the accident. Her actions, though reprehensible, are understood through the lens of fear, stress, disappointment, and pain that she faces on her road to recovery from the accident itself and the opioids that have started to take over her life.

For other books about the struggles real teens are facing every day, consider A List of Cages, by Robin Roe; The Love & Lies of Rukhsana Ali, by Sabina Khan; and The Disturbed Girl’s Dictionary, by NoNieqa Ramos.