The Little Book of College Sobriety

Stories from College Students, a Few Graduates, and One Mother

The path to recovery is a trek from self-discovery to action.

Live happy, healthy, and free.

The courageous young storytellers in this book describe the journey from the pain of addiction to the joy of connection. journey.  Their stories shed new light on ways to grow and sustain good emotional health for anyone wanting to live with steadiness, peace of mind, and joy. 

You can listen to the stories, too, through pre-recorded audio tracks found in the book. Listen here

Sober Stories

When we tell our stories, we become visible. We find our voices and discover all that’s true about us. I’d love to hear from you, and I’m sure many others who come here would too!

As a member of the recovery community, I’ve learned there are many reasons we misuse drugs and alcohol. Childhood traumas. How we’re wired, with keen, chaotic brains and sensitive but relentless natures. Sometimes mental illness is involved. But i also hear versions of this, in the hundreds of recovery meetings I’ve attended: “I am unlovable.”

Too many young people are dying from that woundedness. So I wrote this book, a form of empowerment,  to honor those who have pushed through their pain, and found joy and hope-rich recoveries. They are models to show other young adults that anything is possible if you believe in yourself and all you can become. Self-love, and the grit to press on, undergird all good programs of recovery.


The proceeds from the sale of this book go to ARHE, Association of Recovery in Higher Education. ARHE is the only association of exclusivity representing college students in recovery, and staff and faculty who support them. Learn more about ARHE here.  

What readers are saying

As someone who recognizes how tireless the work is to fight stigma and bring recovery into the light, it has been galvanizing to see Susan's dedication to making this a book not only honoring young people in recovery but also amplifying the voices and stories of this population that is too often in the shadows.

— Dawn Kepler, Collegiate Recovery Community Coordinator

This book is a groundbreaking glimpse into the ravages and hope of young people overcoming substance use disorders.

— Dr. Cara Poland, MD, MEd, Addiction Medicine Specialist

As a former student leader in my collegiate recovery program, this topic is near and dear to my heart. I know firsthand how hard it is to take that leap of faith into recovery, especially in college where excessive drinking is everywhere. I was honored to share my story with Susan and looked forward to our conversations because it felt like connecting with an old friend--she gets it! I wish I had this book in college, but I’m thrilled Susan captures our stories so that young people understand they’re not alone and “hope-rich” is possible…I promise.

— Charlotte, from The Little Book of College Sobriety

As a therapist and mother, I have watched many amazing, beautiful college-aged people struggle through the physical, emotional, and spiritual aspects of addiction. It is heartbreaking and terrifying: for them and those who love them. Susan’s book is a beacon of hope. Read it. Buy it for everyone you know.

— Karen Joy Hardwick, M. Div., MSW, Author of The Connected Leader

Vulnerability being viewed as a weakness is a dying stigma everywhere but in business, and it needs to be there too. Susan’s book comes at a critical time for young adults navigating career paths, where hard decisions about what to share with whom come into play.

— Chris Anthony, Fortune 500 Software Executive

As business director for a leading provider of treatment, recovery work, health care and life skills training for with those with substance misuse disorders, we are seeing more and more young people coming to us for treatment. Susan’s compassion in offering these young adult stories of hardship and hope will resonate with anyone dealing with the disease of addiction.

— Anne Munro, Business Director, Growth Works