Morphine is a strong opiate or narcotic found naturally in opium, a dark brown resin extracted from poppies. It became the drug of choice for treating wounded soldiers in the Civil War and proved highly addictive.
Heroin, made from morphine, was introduced in 1898 as less addictive than morphine. That claim was false.
Oxycodone, a semi-synthetic opioid developed in 1916 to manage severe acute and chronic pain, also demonstrated high rates of addiction.
OxyContin arrived in 1995 with the promise of gentler and less addictive pain relief. However, 116 people die daily from opioid abuse.
According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention over 109,000 people succumbed to drug overdose in the 12-month period ending March 31, 2022 -almost 300 deaths per day.
In Party Favors a young, financially struggling orthopedic surgeon on the Mississippi Gulf Coast is tempted to sell his patients' leftover narcotics to save his drowning surgical practice, even hook new patients on opioids for financial gain. Local police work to connect his medical practice to a drug trafficking ring run by his secretary's family.
Written by a practicing physician, Party Favors was inspired by true stories of the rampant national and worldwide crisis of opioid and related drug abuse. The novel details complex characters, relationships, and situations that test the deepest moral and ethical modes.