Peerless Flats

I’ve read the book Peerless Flats, by Esther Freud. I won’t call it a great book, because I didn’t like it. The whole story is about this girl called Lisa, who is trying to rebuilt her life in a broken family. Her mother, Marguerite, is unemployed. Lisa, her mother and her little brother Max are living in Peerless Flats. The title of the book comes from these flats. There aren’t any thrilling events in the book. And if I needed to choose a part I liked the most, I just can’t think of one. The main subject in this book is drugs. Lisa has tried drugs a few times. Lisa’s sister, Ruby, was addicted to heroin and other drugs.

Because of the main subject in this book, I would like to refer to drugs in this book assignment. I see hard drugs as a life-destroying product. There are so many people in the world who are or have been drug addicts for a long period. Ruby, the sister of Lisa, has chosen to go to rehab. When Lisa is visiting her sister, Ruby tells a lot of stories about other patients. These stories are heavy, one girl for example has committed suicide because she couldn’t stay away from the drugs. And she could neither stay away from her boyfriend, who had a very bad influence on her.I have searched for some real life drug stories and I found the story about Mindy McConnell. She was a drug addict for several years. It started when she was fifteen and some people wanted to sell her a line of Meth. She was very curious about drugs so she bought it. Later on, she was high everyday at school and she was starting to get out of control. When she wasn’t high she felt depressed and down. Her boyfriend made Meth, so Mindy and her boyfriend lived everywhere he could cook meth. But then she became pregnant and her son Isaiah was born. When he was older she started to realise that her life had to change. She wanted to be a good mother, so that Isaiah could depend on her. And now she is, because she went to rehab and is off drugs.


The first picture is of the tent Mindy and her boyfriend lived in, the other picture is of Mindy and Isaiah when she still was addicted and the last one is of Mindy and Isaiah now.

I think the way Mindy lived, is a way lots of drug users still live. They feel down and depressed when they aren’t high. In this book, Ruby reminds me of Mindy. She isn’t confident and happy with herself when she has not taken any drugs.

Boyfriends with bad influences cause many drug addictions in girls. The girls want their boyfriends to be proud of them and they don’t want to disappoint them. Their boyfriend threatens to leave them if they aren’t taking the drugs he want them to take.

In the book Lisa meets a guy, called Quentin, who sells drugs. I thought she would make the same mistake as her sister but she doesn’t. She leaves the drugs, only tries it a few times but she isn’t getting addicted. Still Quentin is using her, not with drugs, but he uses Lisa with sex. She wants to believe that he has real feelings for her, but he hasn’t. He only calles her when he likes, but isn’t thinking of her true feelings.When I was searching for stories about drugs, I saw this National Geograpic movie on youtube. It is about heroin addicts.

This movie really shows the way addicts are living. The only thing they live for is the drugs. Nothing else seems importent to them. Once they are addicts they need to make money to buy their drugs. That’s hard for people who can’t have a normal job. That’s why a lot of female drug addicts prostitute. It’s an easy way to make quick money. Guys who are drug addicts mostly get into dealing the drugs or, like Mindy’s boyfriend, are going to make drugs.I found a schedule on drugs that shows the addictive qualities of popular drugs.













1 = lowest highest = 6

 ”Dependence: How difficult it is for the user to quit, the relapse rate, the percentage of people who eventually become dependent, the rating users give their own need for the substance and the degree to which the substance will be used in the face of evidence that it causes harm. Withdrawal: Presence and severity of characteristic withdrawal symptoms. Tolerance: How much of the substance is needed to satisfy increasing cravings for it, and the level of stable need that is eventually reached. Reinforcement: A measure of the substance’s ability, in human and animal tests, to get users to take it again and again, and in preference to other substances. Intoxication: Though not usually counted as a measure of addiction in itself, the level of intoxication is associated with addiction and increases the personal and social damage a substance may do.”

As you see, heroin is the drugs that causes the most problems. But eventually all sorts of drugs cause problems.  

In my book, Lisa is afraid to reject drugs that’s offered by friends. When she takes drugs she hopes that the effect is leaving soon and that she doesn’t have to take it again. That’s opposite with most drug users, they want the effect to stay as long as possible and are feeling down when the effect leaves. They also can’t wait to get high again while Lisa hopes she hasn’t got to do it again.It’s a shock to see how these drug addicts are living. They are so obsessed by the drugs they don’t think of anything else in their life. I think a lot of strength is needed to officialy get rid of the drugs. I have a lot of respect for people who do have kicked it so far!

Lara van Hellenberg Hubar



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2 responses to “Peerless Flats

  1. Dear Lara,

    Job well done, glad to see you took the exerpt into account when fixing your wordcount, although you could have mentioned a source here. The use of linked media could be better though, is a website providing info on 24,000 prescription drugs, over-the-counter medicines & natural products and has nothing to do with illegal substances.

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