Gripped 2: Blindsided – an Accurate Representation of Teen Life

| Written by Julia Trenholm, Plymouth, Massachusetts |

Julia Trenholm is from Plymouth, Massachusetts where she attends Plymouth North High School. Her favorite subjects include marketing and science. Some of her hobbies include cheerleading and singing in the Northern Lights A cappella group. Julia would like to study communications in college.

For any age, Gripped Part 2: Blindsided by Stacy Padula is a great way to educate young adults and adults to make thoughtful decisions. The Gripped Series captures the most common teen social situations. This includes alcohol, drugs, and sex. What is a bit frustrating is that these topics are often overlooked by schools because parents and school administrators are worried about this being an influence on their kids (and making students want to do such things); when in reality, it is extremely important to allow students to properly educate themselves on the topic by allowing them to take in this empowering series.

The Gripped book series enables young adults to gain an understanding of how drugs are more powerful than they may think. In Gripped Part 1, we saw the start of addiction and what it looked like and what it does. In Gripped Part 2, now we get to know each character more in depth and understand them on a personal level—some being midway through addiction. Some characters have made some significant changes in their everyday behavior and actions because of drugs and substance abuse. For example, we see Cathy, who is completely innocent in Part 1. She was against drugs, alcohol, and her friends’ impulsive behavior. Then we can see in Part 2, she begins to become hooked on drugs from the influences of the people she is around. She was influenced by characters such as Chris and her ex-boyfriend Jason. Despite her and others being pulled into a sticky situation, I have always seen the good in Cathy, and this proves that just because you make a wrong decision doesn’t mean you aren’t a good person deep inside and that people in a situation like this may just need help from ones around them.

I rate this book a 5 out of 5 stars, as it is completely accurate of what life as a teen can be like today, and provides important lessons on how to navigate through it all.


Now being adapted for TV by Emmy-winning producer Mark Blutman!

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 awakes 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.

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.