39. Methland: the Life and Death of an American Small Town – Nick Reding
Methland is not a very fun book to read for many, many reasons. It is a very fast, depressing read. Iowa, like many other states, is not having a good time with methamphetamines. I know many people who have used meth, some who have had their lives entirely ruined by it, one who hasn’t, and I will never forget my grandparents telling me that after they put up a camera by their anhydrous tank they watched a man breaking into it in the middle of the night on one of the coldest nights of that year. I’m talking seriously negative temperatures, check on your elderly neighbors, turn on the tap so your pipes don’t freeze, don’t leave the house or you’ll lose the tip of your nose (maybe an exaggeration, slightly) kind of cold. Nick Reding’s account of what meth did to Oelwein, Iowa, and how it’s spread through Iowa in general because of some savvy dealers and distributors, the mass of people who “need” it, and some un-savvy approaches to curbing it meant to help out pharmaceutical manufacturers rings true. And I wish it didn’t.