An instant New York Times bestseller, Dopesick is author and journalist Beth Macy’s masterful, fast-paced account of America’s battle with opioid addiction. Through unsparing yet deeply human portraits, Beth gives a human face to those affected in both struggling communities and wealthy suburbs. Beginning with a single dealer who lands in a small Virginia town and sets about turning high school football stars into heroin overdose statistics, Beth endeavors to answer a grieving mother’s questions about why her only son died.

In conversation with The Monthly's US Correspondent Richard Cooke, Beth discusses how overtreatment with painkillers became the norm in America’s medical culture, the drug company at the centre of it all – that has just agreed to pay US$270M to avoid going to a state court trial in Oklahoma over its role in the opioid addiction epidemic – and how this crisis might be reversed.


Find out more about Beth Macy:

Beth Macy (International)

Beth Macy

Beth Macy is the author of the widely acclaimed and bestselling books Truevine and Factory Man. Based in Roanoke, Virginia for three decades, her reporting has won more than a dozen national awards, including a Nieman Fellowship for Journalism at Harvard and J. Anthony Lukas prize from Columbia University. Her latest book is Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors and the Drug Company that Addicted America. Described as "a harrowing, deeply compassionate dispatch from the heart of a national emergency" by the New York Times, this is the only book to fully chart the devastating opioid crisis in America from a bestselling author and journalist who has lived through it. An instant bestseller, Dopesick was a Kirkus Prize finalist and was short-listed for the Andrew Carnegie Medal.

Richard Cooke (Australian)

Richard Cooke

Richard Cooke is The Monthly’s US correspondent, and contributing editor to the magazine. His writing has appeared in the Best Australian Essays, The Guardian, The Saturday Paper, The Sunday Times, Australian Foreign Affairs, and many other publications. He is also a writer for television and radio, and a former creative contributor to the Chaser team. In 2018 he was the Mumbrella Publish Award Columnist of the Year, and finalist in the Walkley-Pascall Award for arts criticism.