Duxbury High School Junior Reviews ‘Gripped’ by Stacy Padula

Written by Maya Daly, Duxbury, Massachusetts

Stacy Padula’s Gripped Part 1: The Truth We Never Told, is a realistic depiction of teens of all ages and their battles with peer pressure and substance abuse.

The story brings in many characters of all different ages who all unite through a common friend group and environment. One of the main characters, Taylor Dunkin, a former star football player of Northeastern University goes down the unfortunate path of opioid addiction following a torn ACL. As Taylor goes deeper into his addiction, he begins to become wrapped up into many issues bigger than what he had originally anticipated.

The other characters of this book, including Taylor’s siblings Jordan and Marc, as well as his younger cousin, Chris and his close friends now navigate through the issues that come from teen drama and other substance abuse issues.

This book highlights one of society’s most important and modern issues: drug and alcohol abuse. An important book for anyone to read, especially young adults, Gripped Part 1: The Truth We Never Told paints a cautionary tale of the realities of drug abuse and what the real cost often is for many of the people who fall victim to it. This book keeps the reader interested, providing multiple plots and twists and turns throughout as well as complex characters with interesting backgrounds of their own.

This book will leave the readers curious and ready to read the next one!

About Maya Daly

Maya is a junior at Duxbury High School, where she is a member of the Varsity Rowing Team. In school, she is a part of the yearbook club, Best Buddies club, and Habitat for Humanity. She enjoys studying English and history, and plans to major in one of those subjects in college. 

Published by Author Stacy A. Padula

Stacy Padula has spent the last 14 years working daily with teenagers as a college counselor, mentor, and life coach. She was named "Top Inspirational Author of the Year" for 2022 by the International Association of Top Professionals (New York, NY). In 2021, she was broadcast on the famous Reuters Building in Times Square as "Empowered Woman of the Year." Her Gripped book series is currently being adapted for TV by Emmy-winning producer Mark Blutman. She is the founder and CEO of Briley & Baxter Publications: a publishing company that donates a portion of its proceeds to animal rescues each month. She has edited and published a variety of titles, including Boston Bruins Anthem Singer Todd Angilly and Rachel Goguen's The Adventures of Owen & the Anthem Singer, LaTonya Pinkard of Netflix's Last Chance U's Nate & His Magic Lion, and former NHL player Norm Beaudin's memoir The Original: Living Life Through Hockey. Stacy resides in Plymouth, Massachusetts with her husband Tim and two miniature dachshunds, Briley and Baxter.