Strung Out: One Last Hit and Other Lies That Nearly Killed Me


Product Details

Park Row
Publish Date
5.9 X 9.1 X 1.1 inches | 0.9 pounds

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About the Author

Erin Khar's debut memoir, Strung Out: One Last Hit and Other Lies that Nearly Killed Me, appeared on most anticipated lists from The Rumpus, SELF, Apple Books, Goodreads, Bitch Media, & others. The New York Times writes, "This is a story she needed to tell; and the rest of the country needs to listen." She writes the popular advice column, Ask Erin. Her essays have appeared many places, including SELF, Marie Claire, Salon, HuffPost, The Rumpus, & Cosmopolitan.


"Khar's buoyant writing doesn't get mired in her dark subject matter. There is an honesty here that can only come from, to put it in the language of 12-step programs, a "searching and fearless moral inventory." This is a story she needed to tell; and the rest of the country needs to listen." --New York Times Book Review

Apple Books Most Anticipated Books of February

Bitch Media, "17 Memoirs Feminists Should Read in 2020"

Alma, "Alma's Favorite Books for Winter 2020"

SELF, "14 Books for Your New Year's Resolution to Read More"

She Reads, "The most anticipated memoirs of 2020"

"One of the strengths of the book is Khar's frank discussion of her relapses, the profound difficulty of those experiences and their utter mundanity.... [Khar writes, ] 'When we write the truth, when we write about our experiences, we reflect back what it means to be a human being. And that reflection creates connection.' And connection, we can all hope, can reduce stigma, and shame, and pain." -- Ilana Masad, NPR

"The book is Khar's reflection on how we, as a society, have preconceived notions of addiction that are fallible. The author writes eloquently about heavy ideas. When Khar describes her own cycles of relapses and getting clean is particularly insightful and fascinating. STRUNG OUT is a window into the world of addiction - a world that makes headlines daily. The reader will likely come away with a clear understanding and empathy for the power that drugs like opioids and heroin have over their victims." --TRACEE M. HERBAUGH, Associated Press

"Erin Khar's tender, at times desolate, yet boundlessly hopeful memoir Strung Out is, in many ways, a love letter to her oldest son, Atticus." --Los Angeles Review of Books

"[Khar] is such a natural, frank storyteller."

"Any book about addiction is actually a book about feelings and the lengths that people who are suffering will go to not to feel them. Erin Khar's memoir, Strung Out, is a compassionate account of her illness and will surely be the gold standard for women writing about heroin addiction." --BookPage

"Khar is able to describe her behavior with refreshing perspective, and she is candid throughout...This contemporary take on an unfortunately too-common experience is eye-opening and relevant...A necessarily honest and emotional account that ends in earned redemption." --Kirkus Reviews

"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

"[Erin Khar] is very effective in recapturing the irrational nature of spiraling addiction and the unique misery of self-loathing during relapses after treatment...[Her] forthrightness goes a long way towards achieving her stated goal of helping to destigmatize opioid addiction...[STRUNG OUT] reveal[s] the complexity of each individual case, thus giving a human face to a national crisis." --Booklist

"Freelance writer Khar shares her 15-year struggle with heroin addiction in this well-written debut memoir... Khar hopes to help destigmatize drug addiction by telling her story, and she effectively captures how her unprocessed trauma and self-loathing fueled her cycle of drug use... sharing her heartbreaking journey with truth and absolute sincerity." --Library Journal

"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 Not Expecting: A Girlfriend's Guide to Infertility

"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