Prescription for Pain: Philip Eil in Conversation with Anna Clark

Thursday, May 23, 2024 - 6:30pm

Schuler Books
Westgate Shopping Center
2513 Jackson Avenue
Ann Arbor, MI  48103 

Discover a riveting read about the opioid epidemic, an obsessive true crime investigation of a bizarre and unlikely perpetrator, when Philip Eil visits our Ann Arbor store. 

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About the Book
An obsessive true crime investigation of a bizarre and unlikely perpetrator, who’s serving the opioid epidemic’s longest term for illegal prescriptions — four life sentences

Written in the tradition of I'll Be Gone in the Dark and True Crime Addict, combining Dopesick's heart rending portrayal of the epidemic's victims with Empire of Pain's examination of its perpetrators.

This haunting and propulsive debut follows a journalist’s years-long investigation into his father's old classmate: former high school valedictorian Paul Volkman, who once seemed destined for greatness after earning his MD and his PhD from the prestigious University of Chicago, but is now serving four consecutive life sentences at a federal prison in Arizona.

Volkman was the central figure in a massive “pill mill” scheme in southern Ohio. His pain clinics accepted only cash, employed armed guards, and dispensed a torrent of opioid painkillers and other controlled substances. For nearly three years, Volkman remained in business despite raids by law enforcement and complaints from patients’ family members. Prosecutors would ultimately link him to the overdose deaths of 13 patients, though investigators explored his ties to at least 20 other deaths.

This groundbreaking book is based on 12 years of correspondence and interviews with Volkman. Eil also traveled to 19 states, interviewed more than 150 people, and filed a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the Drug Enforcement Administration that led to the release of nearly 20,000 pages of trial evidence.

The American opioid epidemic is, like this book, a true crime story. Through this one doctor’s story, an era of unfathomable tragedy is brought down to a tangible, and devastating, human scale.

 

About the Author:
Philip Eil is an award-winning freelance journalist based in his hometown, Providence, Rhode Island. He is the former news editor of the alt-weekly newspaper, The Providence Phoenix. Since the paper’s close in 2014, he has contributed to The Atlantic, Men’s Health, the Boston Globe, Huffington Post, and the Columbia Journalism Review, among other outlets. He has also taught writing and journalism classes at Brown University, Columbia University’s School of the Arts, and the Rhode Island School of Design. He holds an MFA in Nonfiction Writing from the Columbia University School of the Arts, and graduated from University of Michigan in 2007. This is his first book.

About the Conversationalist: 
Anna Clark is a journalist living in Detroit. Her writing has appeared in ELLE Magazine, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Politico, the Columbia Journalism Review, Next City, and other publications. Anna edited A Detroit Anthology, a Michigan Notable Book, and she had been a writer-in-residence in Detroit public schools as part of the InsideOut Literary Arts program. She has also been a Fulbright fellow in Nairobi, Kenya, and a Knight-Wallace journalism fellow at the University of Michigan. Her books include The Poisoned City and Literary Luminaries.

Prescription for Pain: How a Once-Promising Doctor Became the
$29.95
ISBN: 9781586423827
Availability: Not on our shelves. Usually ships in 2-5 days.
Published: Steerforth - April 9th, 2024

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The Poisoned City: Flint's Water and the American Urban Tragedy By Anna Clark Cover Image
$19.99
ISBN: 9781250181619
Availability: On Our Shelves Now. Click on title for location specific availability.
Published: Picador - July 23rd, 2019