‘Crank’ author Ellen Hopkins brings tales of addiction to Federal Way library


When Ellen Hopkins first started writing her bestseller “Crank,” it was merely an outlet to deal the anguish she experienced over her daughter’s addiction to crystal meth.

“Crank” tells the story of Kristina, who is based on Hopkins’s daughter. While visiting her father, Kristina meets a boy who introduces her to the drug. The deeper Kristina gets into the drug, the more she becomes her alter ego, Bree. The book is fictionalized, but Hopkins said the major points were all things that happened.

“She was the straight A student,” Hopkins said. “You never would have expected her to end up where she did.”

“Crank” is a young adult book that is written in verse (poetry format).

“A lot of my readers have parents dealing with addiction,” Hopkins said. “It isn’t just about the addict, addiction touches all the people in their lives, especially those who love them.”

Hopkins is bringing her stories to the Federal Way Regional Library, 34200 1st Way South, at 7 p.m. Oct. 6. Hopkins is the author of “Crank,” “Glass,” “Fallout,” “Identical,” “Tricks,” “Impulse,” “Burned” and “Breaking Up Is Hard To Do.” She has two more books coming out next year.

The books have been highly popular at the library, according to teen librarian Anna Malesa.

“I thought bringing her would be a wonderful addition,” Malesa said. “They’re all popular but ‘Crank’ is very popular.”

The event is geared for teens, although anyone can come.

Hopkins said she will be telling the story behind the books, how she came to decide to write about it, the writing process and poetry versus a narrative.

“It’s more intimate, kind of personal connection to the readers,” Hopkins said of library and school events. “It lets them see who I am.”