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Fallout: Crank #3    by Ellen Hopkins order for
by Ellen Hopkins
Order:  USA  Can
Margaret K. McElderry, 2010 (2010)
Hardcover, e-Book

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* * *   Reviewed by Lyn Seippel

This is the third book Hopkins has written based on her daughter's addiction to methamphetamine. This time she drops in on the lives of Kristina's children: Summer, Autumn, and Hunter. Two younger children are also mentioned but we learn little about them. Kristina's children, conceived by four different fathers, are the human fallout from her addiction.

Hunter has lived with Kristina's parents all of his life. He works as a DJ and has a wonderful girlfriend, but he is teetering on the edge of throwing it all away.

Summer, fifteen, is in foster care in California. Despite knowing that she's there because her meth-addicted mother can't take care of her, she falls in love with a drug dealer. Her loneliness and longing for love have haunted her all her life.

Autumn lives in Texas with her grandfather and aunt. Her aunt rescued Autumn from her parents when she was a toddler. Autumn knows her dad is in jail, but has no idea where her mother is. She doesn't know that she has four siblings. Sometimes she has nightmares that no one explains.

In the end all of the siblings meet. The family gathers at Kristina's mother's house for Christmas although most were not invited. Will they be able to give each other the support they need?

A family tree would have been helpful at the beginning of the book to make it easier for readers to follow the relationships. Even without it, Hopkins has written another powerful novel that readers won't be able to put down. This cautionary tale of how much damage a single person's addiction can cause is written in flowing free verse.

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