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Books About Alcoholism: Our Guide To The Top 5

Books are one of the best sources of knowledge; throughout human history, people have turned to books for help, knowledge or support. There are many helpful books you can read written by addiction experts, medical professionals and people in recovery from addiction.

On this page, we are going to be exploring some of the most popular books and sober diaries about alcohol addiction from a variety of authors and decades. Learn more about alcohol addiction and some of the best books to read if you are in recovery, considering going to alcohol rehab, or simply want to learn more about alcoholism.

What is Alcohol Addiction?

Alcohol addiction is a diagnosable and treatable disease It is recognised as a mental illness as well as a physical disease due to the way alcohol addiction can impact your brain.

Alcohol use disorder (AUD) is characterised by the lack of control over drinking alcohol. People with alcohol use disorder may continue drinking despite being aware of the negative effects on their health, relationships, finances, and general well-being.

AUD is categorised by medical professionals as mild, moderate, and severe – with dependence being the more severe form of alcohol use disorder. Alcohol abuse is a causal factor in over 60 medical conditions, with many negative physical effects.

 

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5 Books to Read About Alcohol Addiction

Learning about alcohol addiction can help to ease your worries when seeking treatment. Likewise, it can help you to understand your personal relationship with alcohol or support a loved one through their addiction recovery.

Similar to support groups, reading books about alcoholism can make you feel less alone with your addiction and less lonely throughout your recovery. It can also give you the motivation you need to take the first steps into sobriety or to continue along your sober journey.

These books are written by a range of authors from different backgrounds, and each can give you a new perspective on addiction and recovery. Some authors in this list tell their own stories, and others simply provide guidance and helpful information.

Additionally, some provide you with helpful advice and coping strategies that have been tried and tested. Not everything is about facts and figures – some books about addiction share personal experiences and stories about addiction.

Whether you purchase these books from a bookshop or online, these books have excellent reviews and are a must-read.

1 – The Big Book – Alcoholics Anonymous

The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous takes the first spot on our list of the top 5 books about alcohol. Whether you’ve experienced alcohol addiction yourself or know somebody who has alcohol addiction, chances are, you’re familiar with the group Alcoholics Anonymous.

Often shortened to ‘AA’, Alcoholics Anonymous is a 12-step program with an extensive history. The group was founded in 1935 and was designed to provide support for those with alcohol addiction or alcohol use disorder. The book was mostly written by the founder of the group, Bill Wilson.

Alcoholics Anonymous is a place where people affected by alcohol can share their experiences. Alcoholics Anonymous encourages life without alcohol, providing support for its two million-plus members.

The Big Book was published back in 1939 and was written to show other recovering alcoholics how the first members of AA got sober.

In 2024, The Big Book was translated into more than 70 languages. It sold 30 million copies and is considered the key text for AA meetings. The book is considered the most-read self-help book of all time.

The book is referenced in most Alcoholics Anonymous meetings – containing the necessary information about the 12-step recovery programme. Likewise, it contains helpful stories about those who have overcome their problems with alcohol.

Many people are under the false impression that Alcoholics Anonymous is a cult – check out this page to explore whether this is true, and why people believe it is a cult.

2 – The Mindfulness Workbook for Addiction – Rebecca E. Williams and Julie S. Kraft

The Mindfulness Workbook for Addiction by Rebecca E. Williams and Julie S. Kraft takes the second spot on our list of the most popular books about alcohol addiction.

Mindfulness is becoming more and more common – more people are realising the benefits that being mindful can have on your physical and mental health. It is considered a mental state that is achieved by being present in the current moment and focusing on your awareness.

Being mindful involves both acknowledging and accepting your thoughts. Some people are under the false impression that mindfulness is about pushing your thoughts away, but this isn’t the case. In order to be mindful, you have to accept your thoughts, feelings and sensations so you can move past them.

Mindfulness is proving to be an effective tool for those dealing with alcohol addiction. It can be used to manage cravings but also make sober living more manageable in general – as well as other mental health conditions that are linked with addiction such as depression and anxiety. It can ease symptoms associated with alcohol withdrawal too.

The Mindfulness Workbook for Addiction by Rebecca E. Williams and Julie S. Kraft provides helpful and practical instructions on how you can apply mindfulness to your personal life, and how it can help you deal with addiction.

Small amounts of the material in this workbook are aimed at those with mindfulness experience – however, this book can help anybody who is dealing with addiction.

The Mindfulness Workbook for Addiction was published in 2012 by two psychologists and offers you a program to help you work through your addiction and grief, through DBT (dialectical behavioural therapy), CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy), as well as ACT (acceptance and commitment therapy).

3 – Why You Drink and How to Stop: A Journey to Freedom – Veronica Valli

According to many reviews, this book is extremely helpful for those struggling with addiction. Published in 2013 by Veronica Valli, this book shares the author’s personal experience with addiction and quitting drinking – her personal story and own path with alcohol.

Critics state that this is a brilliantly researched, refreshingly straightforward and delightfully compelling book. The book explores the reasons why ‘alcoholics’ act the way they do, and how their brains are wired.

Veronica Valli spent over 10 years working as a therapist and life coach specialising in addiction, which involved working with outreach services, private practices, the criminal justice system, local government and primary care adult treatment.

Understanding how addiction works can be extremely helpful in terms of recovery – and this book can teach you what you need to know about addiction so you can focus on your own recovery journey.

4 – The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober – Catherine Gray

The Unexpected Joy of Being Sober by Catherine Gray has been referred to as both funny and smart – and instead of focusing on the negative impacts of addiction, the book focuses on the joys of being sober and living an alcohol-free life.

Sobriety is something that may scare many addicts – but this book shines a light on the positives. Sobriety can be all it’s cracked up to be, and this book can help you see how freeing life can be without alcohol.

Many people find comfort in AA and the 12 steps – however, Catherine Gray explores life outside of AA. Many people worry about life being lonely or boring without alcohol – however, this book shows the other side of the coin.

As a Sunday Times bestseller with countless positive reviews, you can rest assured knowing that this book is a must-read, whether you’re an addict yourself or you simply wish to learn more about addiction.

As well as having opinions and insight, this well-written book also provides practical resources and statistics. It is extremely refreshing to see a book that outlines the fun and positive aspects of sobriety rather than focusing on the negatives of addiction.

5 – This Naked Mind: Control Alcohol, Find Freedom, Discover Happiness & Change Your Life – Annie Grace

The final must-read on our list is This Naked Mind: Control Alcohol, Find Freedom, Discover Happiness & Change Your Life by Annie Grace.

This book is a science-backed book written with insight, clarity, and kindness. Like many books about alcoholism, this book is part memoir, part practice; and can give you help and support throughout your recovery journey.

You may be reluctant to lower your alcohol consumption, control your drinking habits or stop drinking as you may associate sobriety with being boring or miserable. However, much like the previous book on our list, this book outlines the positives of sobriety.

Author Annie Grace encourages readers to consider what life could be like without alcohol – living in the present moment without strong cravings or compulsions.

Grace understands how difficult recovery can be, and how hard it can be to crave alcohol – she was once a high-functioning alcoholic herself.

There was a time in her life when she drank heavily every night, whilst holding down a job as the president of a multinational company. However, she now uses her past experiences with alcoholism to help others. This is not dissimilar to the founder of Help4Addiction.

The founder of Help4Addiction was once an addict and vowed to use his experiences with addiction to help others receive the addiction treatment they need to regain control of their lives.

How We Can Help You Quit Drinking for Good

Alcohol dependence can often feel like a lifetime struggle, but there is help out there for you. At Help4Addiction, we can find the right alcohol detox and rehab treatment for you.

We have connections with rehab clinics all around the UK and can determine the right rehab facility or treatment plan for you.

Whether you’re looking for outpatient rehab or you’d prefer inpatient rehab at a residential rehab centre, we can give you all the information you need to make an informed decision for you.

If you undergo the right treatment and put the work in, you can leave your former life behind and break the physical and psychological dependence.

Remember, you don’t have to deal with addiction alone – we are here for you. Contact us today to begin your alcohol recovery journey and kickstart your sober life. Likewise, chat with us to discuss your treatment options and learn more about how we can help you overcome substance use disorder.

About Author

Nicholas Conn

Nicholas Conn

Nicholas Conn is a leading industry addiction expert who runs the UK’s largest addiction advisory service and is regularly featured in the national press, radio and TV. He is the founder and CEO of a drug and alcohol rehab center called Help4addiction, which was founded in 2015. He has been clean himself since 2009 and has worked in the Addiction and Rehab Industry for over a decade. Nick is dedicated to helping others recover and get treatment for drug and alcohol abuse. In 2013, he released a book ‘The Thin White’ line that is available on Amazon.

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