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Dopesick

By: Beth Macy
Narrated by: Beth Macy
Series: Dopesick
Length: 10 hrs and 3 mins
4.3 out of 5 stars (13 ratings)

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Summary

A Times book of the year.

Beth Macy reveals the disturbing truth behind America's opioid crisis and explains how a nation has become enslaved to prescription drugs.

This powerful and moving story explains how a large corporation, Purdue, encouraged small-town doctors to prescribe OxyContin to a country already awash in painkillers. The drug's dangerously addictive nature was hidden, whilst many used it as an escape, to numb the pain of of joblessness and the need to pay the bills. Macy tries to answer a grieving mother's question - why her only son died - and comes away with a harrowing tale of greed and need.

©2018 Beth Macy (P)2019 Head of Zeus

Critic reviews

"A shocking investigation...[Dopesick] is essential." (The Times)

"Shifting effortlessly between the socio-political and the personal, Macy weaves a complex tale that unfolds with all the pace of a thriller." (Observer)

"Dopesick is a deep - and deeply needed - look into the troubled soul of America." (Tom Hanks)

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Interesting, but don't recommend the audiobook

This book brings to life the opioid crisis, but needs re-recording with a professional narrator.

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Heartbreaking and illuminating

This should be compulsory reading for everyone. The case studies humanise a very human and misunderstood problem and also lay out the underlying contradictions in treatment approaches and attitudes to addiction in general. The tendency for addicts to be criminalised and taken into the criminal justice and penal systems with devastating consequences is not unique to the US and it was interesting to see how many overlaps there are between treatment approaches globally in spite of a growing problem and little evidence that traditional criminalisation techniques work.