Events & Reviews


April 14:
The Next Big Questions in Behavioral Health Journalism, WHYY Philadelphia

April 24:
Book Culture, Long Island City

June 5:
Searchlight Series at Eastern State Penitentiary Historic Site, Philadelphia

June 30:
Author’s Showcase at 2018 NAMI National Convention, New Orleans

November 13:
Director’s Speaker Series NIMH, Bethesda, MD


“A searing exposé about the criminalization of mental illness…. Though the subject matter dictates that much of the book is relentlessly depressing, the author is such a talented information gatherer and fluid stylist that the narrative becomes compulsive reading. An eye-opening book that cries out for change.”  Starred review in Kirkus Reviews

“Roth strikes a powerful balance between big picture analysis and individual stories to make this searing account of America’s misguided treatment of the mentally ill hard to ignore.” Starred review in Publishers Weekly

Advance Praise for Insane: America’s Criminal Treatment of Mental Illness

“Alisa Roth lays bare the true costs of incarcerating, rather than attempting to help, our nation’s mentally ill citizens…. Insane is a sobering and profoundly important read for any American with a conscience.”―Heather Ann Thompson, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of, Blood in the Water: The Attica Prison Uprising of 1971 and its Legacy

“With heartbreaking stories of suffering, Alisa Roth shines a much-needed light on the crisis that afflicts the overwhelming number of mentally ill people locked away behind bars, where they are not treated but abused. This is essential reading for anyone who cares about how our country treats its most vulnerable citizens.”―David Cole, national legal director of the ACLU, and author of Engines of Liberty: How Citizen Movements Succeed

Alisa Roth’s Insane provides an anatomy of our troubled system of dealing with people with mental illness who commit crimes…. Extensively researched and exquisitely written, Insane is a must read for policymakers, mental health professionals, mental health consumers and their families, and the general public.”―Elyn R. Saks, author of The Center Cannot Hold

“Alisa Roth’s Insane clearly and objectively lays out the extent and history of our abandonment of the mentally ill while setting forth thoughtful pathways forward…. This book should be required reading for any person involved with the criminal justice system or legislatures.”―Thomas J. Dart, sheriff of Cook County, Illinois