Margaret K. McElderry Books

August 2013

$14.99 AU

576p pb

ISBN: 978-1442471818

fp October 2004

Part 1 of a trilogy

followed by Glass and Fallout


Ellen Hopkins

from the book...

Kristina Georgia Snow is the perfect daughter: gifted high school junior, quiet, never any trouble. But on a trip to visit her absentee father, Kristina disappears and Bree takes her place. Bree is the exact opposite of Kristina - she's fearless.


Through a boy, Bree meets the monster: crank. And what begins as a wild, ecstatic ride turns into a struggle through hell for her mind, her soul - her life.

If you have read this verse novel and would like to share your opinion of it with other readers please send your review or comments to YARR-A

Crank is a really interesting novel by Ellen Hopkins. Even though it is for teens of 14 years and older, I am 12 and read it.  It is mostly about a girl Kristina who one day visits her dad (her parents are divorced), and meets a male and falls in love with him. His name was Adam (Buddy), and introduced her into snorting crank (crack). She then goes home, addicted; since that trip she has been Bree the very opposite of Kristina. She later goes out with another man named Brendan and got pregnant, meanwhile she is dating a guy named Chris (Lance). She kept the baby and raised her son with the help of her mother and her brother.

When I first saw the cover I said, "cool”, and the writing inside is like a bunch of poems. There are like no chapters (which is cool), just a lot of pages! That is why some people won't pick the book up. This book teaches young teens and other kids to see what can happen when they smoke cigarettes, snort or smoke crank/crack or take ecstasy and also have sex (without protection) at a young age. I recommend you to read this book!

J.B. (female), age 12, New York

You may not think a book written completely in poetry would be easy to read. I didn't either, until I picked up Crank. I was absolutely devoured in this book; I read all 537 pages in a day. It is comprised of unique poems that tell the story of Kristina, a young girl who get addicted to crank. The drug takes control of her life, because she will do anything to get more. Soon, all of the old Kristina has vanished. She is a new person, and the only thing she can think about is how to get more crank or "the monster". Things quickly spiral out of control as she gives into her addiction. It is a deeply moving book that will get you thinking. I highly recommend it.


Claire, aged 14, Indiana, USA

I think Crank is the best book I have yet read. I want to become a journalist and/or a writer. I really enjoyed this book.  I pretty much finished it in one day. I couldn’t put it down. It was really intense! All my friends are reading it now. I love the way Hopkins wrote this book. It’s really a favorite of mine, one I’ll never forget. I learned a lot and I’ll always remember my limits. It’s a shame she didn’t. Thanks for hearing me out!

Parisa, age 16, Sacramento, California

I loved Crank. The way it was written was so beautiful and intelligent. It must have taken forever for Ellen Hopkins to write the poems and then add the secret "hidden" ones in some on the side. Crank was so intense that I couldn’t put it down and when I wasn't reading it, I longed for the book, almost as Bree longed for the monster.

Brittany, age 17, New York

Crank is the real life story of a young girl presented in her mother’s roman a clef. It is a powerful and candid book that accounts a young girls’ journey into dependence.

Kristina is a good girl, never gets in to trouble, gets good grades and has nice friends. All this changes when she goes to Albuquerque to meet her estranged father. Kristina ends up finding a lot more than she was looking for, she meets Adam (Buddy) who introduces her to the monster and she turns into Bree. Bree is fearless and starts off using crank for the rush, soon she is hooked and the monster becomes a way of life. Everything is slipping away and Kristina realises she has to get escape from the jaws of the monster.

Crank is written in verse, and is packed with many interesting literary features. The poems in the book were very powerful and I felt that they conveyed the meaning much better than a novel would have. I really enjoyed Crank by Ellen Hopkins and I feel that it is a worthwhile read. The book is only suitable for people over 13 years as it deals with some very intense issues.

Shuchita, age 15, Canberra, Australia

I am a fourteen year old female and have read the novel Crank by Ellen Hopkins. I think all teenagers (girls and boys) should read this novel because of the fact that it could happen to anyone. It opens up our eyes to the reality of the drug world and tells what can happen without us having to go through it. Even if someone was to go and read this book if they did or are doing drugs, it might open their minds to think ‘what the hell am I doing this shit for?’


Samantha, age 14, Prince Edward Island, Canada

I picked up Crank on Dec.17 at 12:30 and finished it at 4:23. I absolutely loved this book. I really loved the style of the writing. I usually read straight paragraph books and when I saw this one I thought it would be interesting so I picked it up and didn't put it down once. I can't believe I finished it in 3 hours I really was addicted to the book.

I would recommend this book to everyone, especially teenagers; I think that if you were to read while you were maybe 12 then you could see how bad things can get when you get addicted to things like crank. Well, I loved it and can't wait to read Burned next!

Summer, age 15, Albuquerque, New Mexico

Crank is by far my favourite book ever written. I could not put the book down, not even for a minute. I tried but I couldn’t bring myself to leaving it alone. The story itself is just so spectacular and I read it over and over.

Katy, age 17

OMG! This book was amazing! I would recommend it to every teen. It was the first book I read in four hours; I was as addicted to the book as Kristina was to crank. It made me want a Bree inside of me, but a Bree I could control. I wished the book would never end.

J. A., USA

This book is so amazing; through its poetic style it brings out the monster.  The story was ever so real and I too felt I was struggling every minute I was reading. I was so into it I read nonstop for two days. I would like to commend this author for what she has published. I would love to give it to my English teacher and prove to her that full sentences do not necessarily make the story better; the more of your own style you put into it the better it is, since my style of writing is never A+ grammar. Thank you again for a wonderful book, I can’t wait for your next novel.


Sarah, California, USA

Crank is about a girl named Kristina, who adopts a second identity, Bree, when on holiday with her dad. She meets a boy, Adam [or Buddy, his second identity] who seduces her into using Crank, a new and very popular party drug. The novel addresses some interesting and incredibly intense themes, such as drug use, peer-pressure, rape, vampirism, and sex. The author has captured the character and her emotions well, moving her fittingly through the story.

The plot of this novel is new and exciting. Although the language and format are more interesting in this novel than the plot itself, it still conveys powerful meanings. When Kristina goes to see her divorced father, her life changes drastically - Adam introduces her into a world she never knew, the world of drugs, sex and letting go of inhibitions. The time she spent with him was enough to get her addicted to the Monster, and Bree, her new identity.  The resolution of the novel fit well with the rest of the story, and was very realistic. The author handles this complex story very well, never taking things too far or too fast.

The characters in this novel are incredibly convincing, and the way they reacted was typical. Character development in this book is interesting, in that each decision seems logical and realistic, but when looking over the novel, you wonder how Kristina changed so much.  This verse novel is largely without dialogue, and because of this, the reader could easily understand why Kristina took the steps she did. The characters surrounding Kristina also feel alive and individual.

The style and format of this novel makes it twice as good. The author is allowed to use interesting sentence structures and follow interesting thoughts, as she couldn’t do in a traditional novel. For example, she can spend a lot of time describing the effects of crank in poetic ways. Also, the setup of the page keeps the reader intrigued. When the author writes about the conscious choice Kristina made to do crank, the writing is broken up, and the right side of the page reads “Choices make Kristina crazy. Bree laughs.” [page 38]

This powerful book addresses some very heavy themes that may be hard to handle for those of a younger age or maturity. I think this book uses fantastic poetic devices, compelling characters, and emotive language. I would rate it 9/10.

Joel, Year 10, Canberra, Australia

Crank gives amazing details and educates readers about drugs along with telling an incredible story. It is about a girl named Kristina who gets drawn into crank and had a different personality when on it, her name is Bree. Bree begins to take over her, and she begins making different decisions. A must read book.


This book was really good...I read it in just 1:30 min! I love to read...but none of my friends do...I tried to tell them about it but found it hard to...and "Crank" is Meth...not crack...

Aaron, New York

Crank is the best book I have ever read. I absolutely loved it. I am 17 years old and I have witnessed some of my friends go through many changes and lose everything because of drugs like crank. I liked the book because it helped me see through that person’s eyes and I saw how hard it can be to have an addiction like that. I almost didn’t read it because it looked so long but then one of my friends told me to read it and I am so glad because it was such a good book. I would recommend it to anyone that is the appropriate age.

Kristie, age 17, Vermont, USA

I really liked this book. I read the whole thing in a day. I've read it twice after that. It’s just a really good book and it tells it like it is, but the only thing I didn’t like about it is that some people might read it and wanna try meth.

Brittany, age 16, Franklin, Ohio

I have read some of the reviews sent in, and there are many things in them that I would have to disagree with on the book Crank by Ellen Hopkins. Sure the main character of the book Kristina is a fine example of a teenager. And yes, she was thrown into the world of drugs by a male who she was interested in, but, by some of the reviews, the people who have read this book say she was 'seduced or pressured' into doing crank. When you actually go through the book reading clearly you would notice that Adam/Buddy asks Kristina/Bree if she is sure, he doesn’t try repeatedly over and over to get her to do the drug.

- Okay, little girl. Ready to party? I was ready to take a big bite of freedom before my time was up.

- You gotta be sure. Mom expected me home in ten days. Of course, I was sure.

And you can’t say that Adam/Buddy introduced her to sex, because they might have done some heavy kissing and touching, but after she leaves her dad and goes back to her mom’s, it is Brendan who eventually takes her virginity by raping her, an effect to her addiction.

I can’t say that this was my favourite book ever, like many, because that just makes it seem like you’re praising Kristina/Bree for being on crank. It was, however, one of the enlightening books I have ever read; one of those books that open your eyes to the things that go on around you.

Crank is a great book and I think that it should be read by more than just teens. It should be read by adults too, so they know more about the problems that surround their children. I was going to buy both Crank and Burned, but unfortunately I was only able to get Crank. But I am waiting on the chance to get the other.

Megan, age 16, Alabama, USA

I just wanted to say that I personally love this book. It’s cool. It gives you great insight into how addictive and real this drug really is. I couldn’t put it down, once I started. I got it from a friend; they got it from a friend, and so on. Everyone wants to read this book even if they have already read it. It’s a hard book to find in our school. All my friends and I loved it and I’m sure many other people love it to.


Back to verse novels list