Synopses & Reviews
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"This vital memoir will change how we look at the opioid crisis and how the media talks about it. A deeply moving and emotional read, STRUNG OUT challenges our preconceived ideas of what addiction looks like." Stephanie Land, New York Times bestselling author of Maid
In this deeply personal and illuminating memoir about her fifteen-year struggle with heroin, Khar sheds profound light on the opioid crisis and gives a voice to the over two million people in America currently battling with this addiction.
Growing up in LA, Erin Khar hid behind a picture-perfect childhood filled with excellent grades, a popular group of friends and horseback riding. After first experimenting with her grandmother's expired painkillers, Khar started using heroin when she was thirteen. The drug allowed her to escape from pressures to be perfect and suppress all the heavy feelings she couldn't understand.
This fiercely honest memoir explores how heroin shaped every aspect of her life for the next fifteen years and details the various lies she told herself, and others, about her drug use. With enormous heart and wisdom, she shows how the shame and stigma surrounding addiction, which fuels denial and deceit, is so often what keeps addicts from getting help. There is no one path to recovery, and for Khar, it was in motherhood that she found the inner strength and self-forgiveness to quit heroin and fight for her life.
Strung Out is a life-affirming story of resilience while also a gripping investigation into the psychology of addiction and why people turn to opioids in the first place.
"An addiction memoir that doesn't ask for pity of forgiveness, Erin Khar's Strung Out is raw and real, and shows the hard life lessons behind the beloved advice column, Ravishly's Ask Erin." Lilly Dancyger, editor of essay anthology, Burn It Down
"I love Erin's unusual use of language. My air was caught in my throat a little bit and I knew I was in the company of a writer who is willing to take risks, who knows what it is like to NEED to take risks to get the story right. That makes what she is doing ART." Lidia Yuknavitch, author of The Chronology of Water, The Book of Joan, and The Small Backs of Children
"Erin is a hauntingly beautiful writer with the kind of story you think has nothing to do with you but has everything to do with you. She transcends her specifics and speaks to anyone who has ever fought hard to stay in the game of being a human being. She is a true inspiration." Kimberlee Auerbach Berlin, author of The Devil, The Lovers & Me: My Life in Tarot
"Khar holds nothing back in this moving debut memoir about addiction...This heartbreaking yet heartwarming memoir puts a human face on the drug crisis and the factors that lead to addiction." Publishers Weekly
About the Author
Erin Khar is known for her writing on addiction, recovery, mental health, relationships, parenting, infertility, and self-care. Her weekly advice column, Ask Erin, is published on Ravishly. Her personal essays have appeared in SELF , Marie Claire, Esquire, Cosmopolitan, Good Housekeeping, Redbook, and others. She's the recipient of the Eric Hoffer Editor's Choice Prize and lives in New York City with her husband and two kids.