"A shocking history, dominated by an attitude of exploitation toward American students and their families."
"The book is sure to garner attention, as well as make readers take a close look at the cost of higher education. Parents, students, and educators will find it enthralling and possibly be moved to push for industry reforms."
—Booklist, starred review
“This urgent report makes a convincing case for reforming the loan program to allow students a fair shot at college, at a reasonable price. An alarming study of an economic crisis long in the making—and entirely avoidable.”
"A deeply reported, jaw-dropping book. A must-read for every student, parent, and educator. Through engaging storytelling, this timely book helps us understand, in the same way as The Big Short did with housing, how we allowed a student-loan system started with good intentions during the Great Society to grow into an uncontrolled behemoth that has left tens of millions of Americans saddled with trillions in debt."
—Jeffrey Selingo, New York Times bestselling author of Who Gets In and Why and There Is Life After College
“A masterfully written, surprising, and deeply reported book that is studded with breathtaking insights on every page. The Debt Trap is about more than student debt — it’s the true story of how America’s ladder of opportunity was turned into a debtor’s prison. It’s all here: Well-intentioned government programs gone awry, corporate corruption, exploitation, and the unbreakable hope of American people working tirelessly for a better life. An indispensable book to understand one of the most urgent problems in our country today.”
—Christopher Leonard, New York Times bestselling author of Kochland
"A powerful investigation into one of the most important economic crises of our time. The storytelling is lively and emotive, which is crucial for understanding the human impact of towers of student debt on everyday Americans. The book should be read by politicians, parents and students alike as a cautionary tale of how government policies can bring enormous gains while also wreaking havoc on lives."
—Brad Hope, New York Times bestselling co-author of The Billion Dollar Whale
"Almost out of nowhere, student debt became a one trillion dollar problem—not just for the 43 million people who suffer under its weight but the entire society. In his rich and poignant book, Josh Mitchell traces this harrowing history, how policy makers' good intentions in Washington DC and corporate executives' greed and exploitation has led to stifled lives and snuffed out dreams of betterment."
—Jesse Eisinger, author of Chickenshit Club