Reading Material

It's very important that we throw everything at getting sober in the early days, and that includes soaking up as much material as you can related to recovery. This Sober Toolbox is a space for telling others about the great books, blogs, podcasts, articles and other resources that have helped you on your way. If you're looking for more discussion, interactions and feedback, head inside our Members Feed. That's where the real-time conversations take place.

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  1. Maureen 3 years ago

    I think William Porter’s Alcohol Explained is the best for a simple easy to understand explanation of what alcohol does to the body and mind. I’ve read a lot of the others. Catherine Gray really is good for the nitty gritty of her worse times and the joy of her sobriety. I’m now listening to Mrs D on audible and doing Sober October. Well done to everyone who has cracked it. ??

  2. healthyishnix 3 years ago

    Thanks to recommendations on here. I just started listening to Annie Grace’s podcast “This Naked Mind”. Have started at episode 1 (episode 210 has just aired this week) so that I could listen to the whole “journey”. Just finished episode 2 and it’s really great, she’s speaking my language, my behaviour, the relevance is uncanny and scary when you think how many millions of us are in this same boat.

  3. maude023 3 years ago

    Mrs D is going without : Lotta Dann
    Kick the Drink ….Easily: Jason Vale

  4. mkusch 3 years ago

    The Sober Diaries by Clare Pooley, Alcohol Lied to Me by Craig Beck

    • mkhum 3 years ago

      I love The Sober Diaries I will probably reread as soon as I finish, which sadly will be soon.

  5. Simo 3 years ago

    Alcohol Lied To Me … I found this book really encouraging

  6. Betsy19 3 years ago

    The Unexpected Joy of being Sober – Catherine Gray

  7. MrsFruitTea 4 years ago

    The Sober Diaries by Clare Pooley
    Alcohol Lie to Me by Craig Beck

  8. Jessica0676 4 years ago

    Friends I was 8 days sober n relapsed on day nine. But that was only one day. I still counted the 8 days sober n I counted day 9 the day after I relapsed.. Out of 14 days I’ve been sober 13 days n that’s progress. You don’t have to start over at 1 day. Count your sober days n if u relapse during that time just don’t count that as a sober day but please continue to count your sober days.. That’s what’s kept me going is knowing there is no day 1 again even after a relapse.. We all at the beginning relapse but don’t take away your success with one relapse.. It’s worked 4 me

  9. hugh mcfadden 4 years ago

    Booze Musings BOOM

  10. Hugh McFadden 4 years ago

    This Naked Mind

  11. ditchick 4 years ago

    Pinterest Affirmations on recovery plastered throughout the house..

  12. Ryantaiji 4 years ago

    “When things fall apart” Pema Chodron

  13. Dylan 4 years ago

    “Recovery — Freedom from our Addictions” by Russell Brand

  14. Bisok 4 years ago

    This Naked Mind
    The Alcohol Experiment
    The Biology of Desire

    • Maxie 4 years ago

      Thanks for the recommendations. I am going to go on the Barnes and Noble site today and order one or two.

  15. brendab 4 years ago

    The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, tells my story in a hundred different ways, no sugar coating about the affects of my drinking on family, relationships, work and of course me..shows a way out and the importance of connection with others, having a support group of other people who are sober was so important for me, once I stopped drinking for 9 years but didn’t know anyone else who didn’t drink so felt very “other” and ultimately went back to drinking to belong ..that worked out as badly as you would I have that through AA and it makes me so much more comfortable and resilient…I love the stories at the back of the book, particularly the Australian edition, as I am an Aussie too…take what you need and leave the rest…also Dry by Augusten Burroughs, humorous but also tells the deadly serious story of alcohol addiction and the benefits of sobriety..good luck to everyone…doesn’t matter where or how you find a sober community, but to me it is critical to getting through the darkness..addicts are v sensitive and isolation kills us IMO..B

  16. Dixiemama 4 years ago

    This Naked Mind by Annie Grace
    Alcohol Lied to Me by Craig Beck
    The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober by Catherine Gray
    Drink by Ann Dosset Jones(?)
    Alcohol Explained by William Porter
    Blackout by Sarah Hepola

  17. mollyroxanne 4 years ago

    This Naked Mind.

  18. nessibnzl 4 years ago

    Alcoholics Anonymous Big Book & Daily reflections
    The unexpected joy of being sober – Catherine Gray
    Mindfulness and the 12 steps – Therese Jacobs-Stewart

  19. Dylan 4 years ago

    Under the Influence: A Guide to the Myths and Realities of Alcoholism, by James Robert Milam and Katherine Ketcham (Amazon). Provides compelling insights into the physical and mental effects of alcoholism. Reviews: “The most important breakthrough in alcoholism since the founding of Alcoholics Anonymous in 1935.”—Ron Fagan, founder & director, Ceder Hills Alcoholism Treatment Center; “A landmark . . . A must for anyone concerned about drinking.”—Alcoholism, Journal of the American Medical Society on Alcoholism and the Research Society on Alcoholism; “Vital, simple, world-changing information.”—Co-Evolution Quarterly

  20. bestself 4 years ago

    New member and I want to thank all of you for these recommendations. I will need these books and pod cast’s as I enter this bright new world.

  21. Redheadrocks 4 years ago

    This TED about addiction is a goody too!

  22. TheBee 4 years ago

    I’ve also read Kristi Coulter’s ‘Nothing Good Can Come from This’, Sacha Scoblic’s ‘Unwasted: My Lush Sobriety’ – all harrowing and amazing journeys of self-discovery and courage, but by far and away my favorite as it resonates completely with my own journey is Ruby Warrington’s ‘Sober Curious…’ biography – how to give up something one loves and that hasn’t destroyed our lives or anyone else’s, but just made us realise that life without it IS probably better but it is, after all, a potent drug.

  23. Anonymous 4 years ago

    Thanks for the tip. ? Will download it tonight on my Kindle. ?

  24. AmyB 4 years ago

    This Naked Mind: Control Alcohol by Annie Grace (she also has a podcast)

    This book has seriously changed my life. It has changed my life more than any other book, therapy, counselor, class, doctor, or addiction specialist ever did, combined.
    One of my initial hesitations with the book was the fact that it contradicts a lot of the central tenets of Alcoholics Anonymous. I did get sober with AA at one time of my life, but never liked that I had to introduce myself as an “alcoholic” like I was a flawed human being and could only be saved with a “higher” power. Well, the truth is that AA operates on the assumption that there is nothing wrong with alcohol, only with alcoholics. If AA works for you that is wonderful, but for some of us that’s not the case.

    There’s something about Annie’s book that almost immediately caused a complete shift in my thinking. She talks about how society and the liquor industry have manipulated us into thinking there is somethings wrong with us if we choose not to drink. When we chose not to drink alcohol we can sometimes be pitied, questioned, thought of as a prude when in reality we are choosing to be healthy and not pour deadly poison into our bodies. Her book introduced me into a complete psychological mind shift.

    She’s genuine and talks about her own experiences. I am so thankful that I found this book and her podcast.

    • hugh mcfadden 4 years ago

      Same here… Fantastic and liberating…

    • Gingergal 4 years ago

      Allen Carr has a very similar approach and has helped me stay sober for 9 months in the psst

    • truthangel 4 years ago

      It has changed mine too . Its painted a whole new picture of alcohol by revealing the deep truth about it. No doctor or counselor could explain it like she does. I tried AA years ago and It wasn’t for me at all. Was sober for 3 years but always felt defective and abnormal. Works well for some though.

  25. 4wards 4 years ago

    The very first book I read was Mrs. D is Going Without- a classic. The Sober Diaries from Claire Pooley is also very good.

  26. Julielynn 4 years ago

    One of the first books I read was Mrs. D is going without. Now iI am listening to the Unruffled Podcast while driving to and from work.

  27. Julielynn 4 years ago

    One of the first books I read was Mrs. D is going without. Now i am listening to the Unruffled Podcast while driving to and from work.

  28. morgan 4 years ago

    DOPAMINE – FEEL GOOD BRAIN CHEMISTRY A must read if feeling low or just setting out on the A/F journey. A wealth of information.

  29. Torontosoberina 4 years ago

    Drinking: A love Story by Caroline Knapp and Blackout: Remembering the Things I Drank to Forget by Sarah Hepola are two fantastic reads. They are both brilliant writers.

  30. Jocord 4 years ago

    Here is a book written by one of our sober tribe, @Daveh.

    • DaveH 4 years ago

      There are three eBooks that can be downloaded freely from my blog. They are “Alcoholism in a nutshell”, “How to help your alcoholic”, and “Understanding and learning from relapse. They can be downloaded here:

  31. Seni 4 years ago

    I was very impressed by Amy Liptrot, Catherine Gray and Clare Pooley. Fortunately I could read them in my language, in german. Two wonderful german authors are dominik schottner (he lost his father through alcohol) and Susanne Kaloff (she writes about one year without drinking alcohol, after that experience she stayed sober). I’m searching for more books translated into my language, but they are difficult to find.

    • Metoday 4 years ago

      Hello Seni,

      Nüchtern by Daniel Schreiber
      Blackout by Sarah Hepola
      Timm Kruse

      Warm regards

  32. Sonic 4 years ago

    The sober diaries…brilliant

  33. Susabelle 4 years ago

    I’ve read a few but the following hit home for me. This naked mind by Annie Grace & then the 30 day experiment. Other books prior included Elizabeth Vargus’s story & Gabrielle Glaser’s book “Her Best-Kept Secret”.

  34. 71luck 4 years ago

    First book I read during my rehab was given to me by my support worker. Highly recommend it, although its not your average “rehab” book as its warts and all : “A Million Little Pieces” by James Frey. Not only eye opening, but real, down and dirty, entertaining and not a whiff of any “how to’s…”

    “At the age of 23, James Frey woke up on a plane to find his front teeth knocked out and his nose broken. He had no idea where the plane was headed nor any recollection of the past two weeks. An alcoholic for ten years and a crack addict for three, he checked into a treatment facility shortly after landing. There he was told he could either stop using or die before he reached age 24. This is Frey’s acclaimed account of his six weeks in rehab.” From Amazon

  35. JennyR 4 years ago

    I have read Jason Vale, Annie Grace and William Porter, all wonderful and insightful books . I am a new member today and I am 89 days sober 🙂

    • lealor 4 years ago

      Keep going.

    • bikramrunner45 4 years ago

      Congrats on 89 days!! So great! ?

  36. lhilary 4 years ago

    Every day seems to be a milestone for me. I have started this sober journey as a temporary “dry” month and have realized that I can’t remember the last time that I have gone 10 days with out drinking AND, I prefer feeling the way I feel today and have felt for the past 9 days. I get through the tough moments – being alone is the toughest part – by reading other peoples’ posts, drinking a cup of tea with honey (I need the sugar that I am now craving due to lack of the alcohol), going for a walk, breathing deeply or just sitting and being and realizing I didn’t need that glass of wine to get through the moment. Regardless of the degree of each persons drinking, there are certain constants : Better Sleep, Clear Headedness, Empowerment, Optimism, Productivity, Feeling and Being Productive, Looking and Feeling Healthier…NOT feeling like SHIT in the morning! I LOVE wine, I LOVE the rituals that go along with drinking wine…that said, I LOVE the way I am feeling even more!

    • cath1683 4 years ago


    • lealor 4 years ago

      So true. I just want 7 days. The last month…i get to 6 days then pick up. This is harder then i thought.

    • cath1683 4 years ago

      I so identify with you! I’m struggling to cook, as I loved the ritual of chopping, mixing etc and drinking my huge glasses of wine :/ never had as many microwaved meals ?

    • kaydee 4 years ago

      Well said! Congrats for getting through each day. 🙂

  37. NewStartSteph 4 years ago

    Highly recommend “Kick the drink… Easily!” by Jason Vale. Makes you realise how messed up our beliefs about alcohol are. Seeing it clearly for what it is for the first time in my life. This book may be the one that makes me truly never want to go back.

    • maude023 3 years ago

      I felt exactly the same by the time I finished his book the first time I had stopped drinking. When things got tough after a couple of weeks I reread and it so helped to keep me sober

  38. 75sober 4 years ago

    I struggled in AA with reaching my higher power “as I understood it”. I read a book called ‘We Alcoholics, The Luckiest People On Earth’ pretty intersting approach, it’s a short book but cool for me since i struggle with religion

  39. Kirds 4 years ago

    Definitely ‘This Naked Mind’ by Annie Grace 🙂

    • delgirl68 4 years ago

      I haven’t read her book but I really enjoy the podcasts

  40. SandyA 4 years ago

    I’m hoping to stay sober today, can anyone recommend some good books, blogs or other links that were helpful to your recovery. Thank you.

    • lealor 4 years ago

      The book living sober. Also on you tube their are affirmations for recovery and they sure help me

    • Michael6 4 years ago

      I am finding The unexpected joy of being sober by Catherine Grey helpful.

  41. jamieann 4 years ago

    craig fergusen speaks from the heart on you tube. 12 min. Funny and thought provoking at the same time

    • barnmomma 4 years ago

      Oh my gosh, I’d never heard of him, but this video was awesome! Thanks so much for the tip.

    • Travelbug 4 years ago

      OMG, Hilarious. I just watched this.

  42. Mongoose 4 years ago

    My first books that got me through this sober life of 46 days was Sober Diaries by Clare Pooley, The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober by Catherine Gray and Glass Half Full by Lucy Rocca. I am in the middle of This Naked Mind by Annie Grace and also Mrs D is Going Without which got me onto this site. I have found these books to be my friends over this initial sober period and made me realise what I am gaining instead of what I am giving up. Complete shift in thinking, so positive in really seeing the benefits of this sober life and really seeing what alcohol was doing to my life and my poor brain. Such humour and humility, I have loved every page and each page has got me stronger and stronger.

    • Sonic 4 years ago

      Read Sober Diaries I’m 87 days AF will read othersx

  43. Siouxs 4 years ago – A blend of book fandom and sobriety!

  44. sonicgirl 4 years ago – Huge positive reinforcement

    • Genesis 4 years ago

      how much does hip sobriety cost? is it really expensive?

  45. Anonymous 4 years ago

    1. ‘This naked Mind’ by Annie Grace – currently listening to the audiobook on audible.

    2. – I am currently on week 2 of the 8 week Hip Sobriety School, I also received a scholarship for this course, this can be applied for once you join the waitlist and start receiving emails etc.

    Here is Hip Sobrietys 15 essential books to build a holistic recovery:


    4. Laura and Holly also have a podcast called HOME, you can listen to free here

    5. Join the sobersphere on Instagram and follow all the kickass sober warriors like Laura and Holly for daily inspo.

    4. ‘Chasing the Scream’ by Johann Hari – this booked changed everything I thought I knew about alcohol and drugs.

    6. Slowly reading my way through ‘A Course in Miracles’

    5. Looking forward to reading ‘Nothing good can come from this’ by Kristi Coulter, Finding Joy by

    • becc 4 years ago

      Love “This Naked Mind”!!! thanks for all the great resources.

  46. Anonymous 4 years ago

    I listened to it as well just on audible. I hope it works. feeling like there is more to the little monster though than they make out. ie you feel tired etc when you stop drinking.

  47. ylang-ylang 4 years ago – Why we need to be 100% sober on the road.

    • Timidwarrior 4 years ago

      Umm……this is so confronting. Thank you for sharing this. I fear that if I drink I will purposely drive in to a power pole….Everytime I have those thoughts I am going to watch this…

    • jamieann 4 years ago

      OMG i need to watch this every day

  48. Amy 4 years ago

    I reread Allen Carr’s book for alcoholic woman this past weekend. I feel empowered. This is not an easy time to be a woman and we need to stay strong.

    • lealor 4 years ago

      How are you Amy?

  49. Soberkiwi 4 years ago

    OMG….just seen all my replies to my own ‘wrong post’ – didn’t think they had come up … gawd..admin, feel free to delete some…. awkward….!! (last post…promise..)

  50. Soberkiwi 4 years ago

    I posted the wrong link and it won’t let me change it – but you can find my Sober Doodles on my I.G account which is @soberdoodles

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