Rebecca Ronning on the Controversial Content in “Gripped Part 2” by Stacy Padula

The drug use and sexual content in this book will surely get it banned from schools, but the topics are too relevant in teenage culture to be ignored. Why do you think this book should be read by kids in middle school and high school?

I believe that this book should be read by both middle school and high schoolers, because it will certainly help in giving them a deeper understanding on what not to do, regarding reckless drug use and other activities they may not feel comfortable with, how to deal with issues of consent and much more. Because this story is written as a story rather than as a form of “manual” with very explicit directions and advice, it is certainly a more engaging and effective way to convey a message to typically hyperactive teenagers and preteens. 

What can kids learn from reading this book?

There are many messages to be learned from reading this book. One can recognize the strain that drug abuse puts not only on you and your future, but your family and others who care about you. This is clearly expressed through Taylor’s relationship with his younger brothers Jordan and Marc and his cousin Chris. There is much dissension where there was once an extremely strong family bond. Readers may also learn that the best and most worthwhile relationships are those that are supportive and understanding, rather than forceful. This book teaches kids to search for positive influences, ones that make you feel comfortable in your actions and encourage healthy and safe activities. 

GRIPPED PART 2: BLINDSIDED (JUST RELEASED!)


“What other drugs have you tried?” Lisa asked.

“Weed, mushrooms, ecstasy, mescaline, acid, Adderall, Xanax, Klonopin, and Vicodin, but this one is, by far, the best,” Chris replied without any hesitation.

Lisa widened her eyes. “Wow. You’ve tried a lot of stuff since we broke up.”

Fourteen-year-old Chris Dunkin is known for being the life of the party and everyone’s favorite friend. Despite his amicable nature, he carries around deep-seated pain from his childhood that he frequently numbs with alcohol and drugs.

After hosting a party, Chris wakes up with a strange vibe running through his body and no recollection of the previous night. When he learns the horrifying truth of what his night entailed, the trajectory of his life is changed forever.

REBECCA RONNING, NEW YORK, NY

AWARDED INTERN OF THE MONTH, MAY 2019

Rebecca is a rising senior at Brooklyn Technical High School in Brooklyn, New York. As a city kid, some of her hobbies include riding the subway and exploring the city with friends, making all kinds of art, traveling with her family, and experiencing new and exciting things along the way. She would like to study business in college.

Articles by Rebecca:

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Rebecca Ronning on When Darkness Tries to Hide by Stacy Padula – YA Lit for 2018!

Q&A on When Darkness Tries to Hide with Rebecca Ronning

A Teen’s Opinion of The Aftermath by Stacy Padula

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Q&A with Rebecca Ronning on Young Adult Thriller “The Forces Within”

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Q&A with Rebecca Ronning on “Gripped Part 1: The Truth We Never Told” by Stacy Padula

Q&A with Rebecca Ronning of Brooklyn Technical High School – May’s Intern of the Month!