The opioid epidemic has hit people in communities large and small and across all socio-economic classes. What should each of us know about it, and do about it?
Unstitched, as both a quest and personal redemption story, aims to move readers from feelings of helplessness and blame into empathy, ultimately helping friends, family, and community members separate the disease of addiction from the person underneath.
A stranger, rumored to be a heroin addict repeatedly breaks into the small-town library Brett Ann Stanciu runs. After she tries to get law enforcement to do something about it — the elementary school children and young parents with babies frequent the place after all — he commits suicide. When she realizes how little she knows about opioid abuse, she sets out on a mission, seeking insight from others: people in recovery, treatment providers, the town police chief, Vermont's US attorney, etc.
Unstitched portrays the complexity of interpersonal relationships thrown into relief against the overarching question of why do we recoil from those struggling with addiction rather than reach out? Stanciu's quest forces her to see her small town, and herself, in unexpected ways. Her page-turning book will enable others to do the same.