One of the unsettling themes in David Sheff's memoir, "Beautiful Boy," a wrenching tale about his son's drug addiction, is that even though Sheff was among what he calls the "first wave" of self-conscious parents who were hip enough to forge honest relationships with their kids, he was woefully unprepared for the vagaries of methamphetamine.This NPR article has an audio interview with father and son and an extended excerpt from the father's book.
But David's then-teenage son Nic took a detour. Despite his cultured, well-to-do Marin County upbringing, during which he shared dinners with writers like Armistead Maupin, Nic developed a meth addiction that led to heroin use. By 22, he was emaciated and roaming the Tenderloin in search of a fix.
The latest unexpected turn: Last week, Sheff embarked on a national book tour with Nic, now 25, who's been sober for two years and lives in Savannah, Ga. The younger Sheff has his own memoir to promote, "Tweak: Growing up on Methamphetamines." After the father wrote about his son's slide in a November 2005 New York Times Magazine article, an editor from Simon & Schuster contacted Nic, who was then freelancing for the online magazine Nerve.
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