Savanna Peterson has seen first hand the devastation drug addiction has in the lives of her own family. She, along with her grandmother, award winning author Jill Vanderwood, have co-authored 'Drugs Make You Un-Smarter' in an effort to help others take a stand against drug addiction. The book features numerous interviews with high profile celebrities
What do you do when a parent, a grandparent, your brother, cousins, and an uncle are doing drugs? You are also expected to do drugs, right? Fifteen-year-old Savanna Peterson went beyond the expectations of others and took a stand against drugs, even when her older brother had parties while her mom was at work, the police were watching her house, and her dad spent most of her life in prison for drug-related crimes.
'Drugs Make You Un-Smarter' is written by a high school student and her grandmother. The book is a compilation of stories and includes reports of people who have abused drugs and interviews with actors and professionals. The book offers the hard, cold facts about drug abuse, directly from the users themselves and from those who love them. Judy Shervill, Coordinator of Foundation For A Drug Free World states that "Peterson shows that faith in oneself is the most powerful resistance." [to drug abuse and addiction]
Celebrity interviews in the book include:
* Sherriff Tom Allman - Mendocino County, CA. Originated the Face2Face program to teach kids about the dangers of Crystal Meth
* Erica Catton - After her own battle with addiction, Erica has dedicated her life to helping others with their battle with addiction. Erica Catton is working as an executive over promotion, marketing and public relations for Narconon Arrowhead, a successful leader in the treatment of drug and alcohol addiction
* Tray Cheney - an actor who has taken a stand against drugs. Best know for his part as ‘Poot’ in HBO’s Drama “The Wire”. Tray is the author of The Truth You Can’t BeTray” and featured in music videos with Lil Bow Wow and Lil Mo
* Sherry Gaba LCSW - Licensed Physiotherapist and Lifecouch-VH1’s Celebrity Rehab; author of 'The Law of Sobriety, Attracting Positive Energy for a Powerful Recovery'
* Brooks Gibbs -Teen Motivational Speaker - Brooks Gibbs has earned a reputation as a leading authority on the youth issues of bullying and life choices. Featured in Teen People Magazine, The Washington Post and interviewed on CBS
* Jason London - Actor- is affected by the drug abuse of a family member. He is one of People Magazine’s Top 50 Most Beautiful People. Best known for his roles in, Jason and the Argonauts, 7th Heaven and the Man in the Moon
* Dr. Punyamurtla Kishore - Founder of the National Library of Addictions. Medical Director of the Washingtonian Center for Addiction, the first organization in the U.S. to recognize addiction as a disease. Dr. Kishore has been a member of the American Society of Addiction Medicine since 1986
* Kristen Moeller, MS - Author of Waiting for Jack (Morgan James 2010); the celebrity ambassador for the National Eating Disorder Association
* Jennifer Storm - is the author of two personal memoirs; 'Blackout Girl: Growing Up and Drying Out in America' (Hazelden 2008) and 'Leave the Light On: A Memoir of Recovery and Self-Discovery' (Central Recovery Press 2010)
* Vanessa Van Petton - 25 year old author of the parenting book 'You’re Grounded!' She founded RadicalParenting.com where she gives her expertise, along with 60 teen writers, ages 12-20 to help parents and adults get an honest and open view into the world and mind of youth
* Dr. Talia Witkowski is an addictions and eating disorder specialist. Dr. Witkowski learned about these afflictions through her own suffering. She is now the Marketing and Outreach Coordinator of Heal Your Hunger
"My granddaughter," stated Ms. Vanderwood, "Savanna, told me she wanted to write a book telling kids that even if people in their own family are doing drugs, they don’t have to. I told her if she was really serious about writing, I would drop everything and help her. In 'Drugs Make You Un-Smarter' we share fifteen-year-old Savanna’s story about her dad who was in prison for drug related crimes, and the drug abuse she has witnessed during her life. We add in drug facts and stories of drug addicts who have turned their lives around. Even my own story of a marriage to a drug addict/alcoholic shows the effects that drugs have on a family. We have a section called 'Taking A Stand Against Drugs' where readers will learn about goal oriented kids and how they remain drug free."
Paperback: 244 pages
Publisher: Motivational Press Inc.
Publication Date: February 1, 2011
Savanna Peterson, nicknamed Bab Sav because she is less than five feet tall, is a tenth-grader from Utah. Her favorite thing to do is ghost hunting with friends. Her favorite band is Sleeping Giant. Her favorite movies are 'The Sandlot' and 'Stand by Me'. Savanna says, “I try to have as much fun as I possibly can, and that doesn’t include drugs or drinking. You have more fun when you can remember your memories. I like to remember what I did the night before.
“I spend all my time wisely. I want to be an archeologist when I am older. I’m very open-minded and kind. I have a heart and I show it most of the time, but I just can’t tolerate seeing people mess up their lives with drugs.”
Jill Vanderwood is Savanna’s grandmother and the author of four children’s books. She is the winner of the 2008 Writer of the Year Award from the League of Utah Writers. Jill has witnessed firsthand how drugs affect a family through marriage to an alcoholic and the drug addiction of several family members.
Jill’s book, 'What’s It Like, Living Green? Kids Teaching Kids by the Way They Live', is the First Place Winner of three national book awards and won second place on a state level. Through her book sales, she has been an active fundraiser for the Literacy Action Center in Salt Lake City, Wheelchair Foundation, the Hibiscus Children’s Center in Florida, and the Southwind Sustainable Park, in Springfield, IL. Jill Vanderwood also appears in the documentary film, 'Achieve Your Ultimate Success'.
The authors are available for media interview and can be reached using the information below, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. More information is available at her website. 'Drugs Make You Unsmarter' is available at Amazon.com, BarnesAndNoble.com and anywhere books are sold.
Jill Ammon Vanderwood