“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
Coming February 25, 2020.
Now available for preorder.
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.
Advanced Praise for STRUNG OUT
"In STRUNG OUT, Erin Khar reveals the insidious ways addiction can begin, even at a very young age, even where you'd least expect it. Her gripping story challenges the notion of 'it will never happen to my family' and shows exactly how it can. This vital memoir will change how we look at the opiate 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
"I love Erin Khar's work with my whole heart and body. The way she uses her own life's struggles, her gift of language, her impossibly large sense of empathy and compassion, to make you feel less alone, is a rare thing in this world. You don't want to put this book down as if it is a piece of your own heart, and my guess is that it will become just that." -- Jennifer Pastiloff, author of On Being Human
"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
"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
"It's hard to understand how people hit rock bottom and turn to heroin and other addictions, but Erin Khar's lyrical memoir takes us to her darkest of places, where we can almost feel the despair of what it means to be so lost, so broken, that you need to escape. What sets STRUNG OUT apart, though, is knowing that no matter how knocked down she gets, over and over, she will get up again and triumph." -- Amy Klein, author of The Trying Game
"Peering into one's dark abyss is hard. Sharing that abyss with the public is infinitely more difficult. In STRUNG OUT, Erin Khar boldly excavates and illuminates her own shadows with great (and painful) detail. This is a look at the heavy cloud of addiction, told from both inside and outside of the epicenter. Poignant, revealing, and ultimately inspiring, this is the kind of book that changes lives." -- Lisa Marie Basile, author of Light Magic for Dark Times
"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