Awarded author to share insights on opioid crisis

Sam Quinones, a former Los Angeles-based journalist, will share the insights he gained while writing his book “Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic” during a presentation 7 p.m. April 3 at the Community Arts Center in downtown Williamsport, according to recent news release.

The presentation is free and open to the public.

Quinones will discuss the development and writing of his book, which traces the emergence and social impacts of the national crisis of opioid and heroin abuse. The news release stated his stories center on the fall and rise of Portsmouth, Ohio, as the backdrop to weave together two riveting tales of capitalism run amok: The unfettered prescription of addictive pain medications during the 1990s and the influx of black tar heroin.

“We are delighted to be hosting Sam Quinones. His book ‘Dreamland’ unfolds in a masterful way the history of America’s opioid epidemic, and I’m excited to hear him speak on this important topic,” said Dr. Kent Trachte, Ph.D., president of Lycoming College. “I’m especially proud that Lycoming students from one of our intellectual affinity living communities have taken the lead in bringing this event forward.”

“Dreamland” was selected as one of the best books of 2015 by Amazon.com, Slate.com, The Daily Beast, Buzzfeed, Seattle Times, Boston Globe, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Entertainment Weekly and Audible, the news release noted.

“Addiction doesn’t discriminate by class, race or gender. Nor can it be said to be an urban problem, as the Drug Enforcement Administration reported that 12 rural counties were among the top 20 with the highest rate of drug-related deaths in 2015,” said Sarah Holstein, assistant professor of psychology at Lycoming College. “Few families have been spared the effects of the epidemic as drug addiction, particularly to heroin and opioid painkillers, has affected neighbors, friends and loved ones.”

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