Few Young Adult Novels Address this Type of ‘Temptation’

Dec 22, 2017

Dave Connis's young adult novel The Temptation of Adam is about a boy recovering from a type of addiction rarely seen in books for teens, something that’s uncomfortable to acknowledge. So the protagonist, 16-year-old Adam Hawthorne, starts the story in denial.

Adam is addicted to pornography.

He constantly takes out his phone and watches videos; he does it at school, at a restaurant, even sitting in his car at a red light. After almost getting kicked out of school, he's forced to join a 12-step group. The story is unpredictable because Adam winds up forced into a strange sort of community service--he helps his high school chemistry teacher record an album.

There’s a good reason why his chemistry teacher is a secret songwriter, and it relates to addiction and recovery. The author, Dave Connis, joins us to talk about it.

Connis is a Chattanooga singer-songwriter as well as an author, and music is such an important aspect of his novel that he’s recorded a companion album, Looking for Eden.

Read an excerpt here.

From the publisher:

Adam Hawthorne is fine.

Yeah, his mother left, his older sister went with her, and his dad would rather read Nicholas Sparks novels than talk to him. And yeah, he spends his nights watching self-curated porn video playlists.

But Adam is fine.

When a family friend discovers Adam’s porn addiction, he’s forced to join an addiction support group: the self-proclaimed Knights of Vice. He goes because he has to, but the honesty of the Knights starts to slip past his defenses. Combine that with his sister’s out-of-the-blue return and the attention of a girl he meets in an AA meeting, and all the work Adam has put into being fine begins to unravel.

Now Adam has to face the causes and effects of his addiction, before he loses his new friends, his prodigal sister, and his almost semi-sort-of girlfriend.