Harper Wave Books: Unexpected Perspectives on Mind, Body, and Soul

Publication Details and Purchasing Information

Selected Format: Trade PB

Format Details

Book Title and Author Byline

Brave New Weed

Adventures into the Uncharted World of Cannabis

Buy the Book

Product Description and Author Information

About the Book

The former editor-in-chief of Details and Star adventures into the fascinating "brave new world" of cannabis, tracing its history and possible future as he investigates the social, medical, legal, and cultural ramifications of this surprisingly versatile plant.

Pot. Weed. Grass. Mary Jane. We all think we know what cannabis is and what we use it for. But do we? Our collective understanding of this surprising plant has been muddled by politics and morality; what we think we know isn’t the real story.

A war on cannabis has been waged in the United States since the early years of the twentieth century, yet in the past decade, society has undergone a massive shift in perspective that has allowed us to reconsider our beliefs. In Brave New Weed, Joe Dolce travels the globe to "tear down the cannabis closet" and de-mystify this new frontier, seeking answers to the questions we didn’t know we should ask.

Dolce heads to a host of places, including Amsterdam, Israel, California, and Colorado, where he skillfully unfolds the odd, shocking, and wildly funny history of this complex plant. From the outlandish stories of murder trials where defendants claimed "insanity due to marijuana consumption" to the groundbreaking success stories about the plant’s impressive medicinal benefits, Dolce paints a fresh and much-needed portrait of cannabis, our changing attitudes toward it, and the brave new direction science and cultural acceptance are leading us.

Enlightening, entertaining, and thought-provoking, Brave New Weed is a compelling read that will surprise and educate proponents on both sides of the cannabis debate.

About the Author

Joe Dolce

Photo of Joe Dolce

Joe Dolce is the former editor in chief of Details and Star magazines, and has written for many of the world’s leading publications, including the New York Times, Gourmet, and Travel + Leisure. He is the CEO and founder of Joe Dolce Communications, a presentation and media-training company based in New York City. He is not a stoner.


Brave New Weed, a loving rethink of all things marijuana, is likely to be a trusted hitchhiker’s guide to this new universe.” New York Times Book Review

“An expansively researched book that finds the author trekking from Amsterdam to Israel to Colorado to craft an up-to-the-minute portrait of the past and future of cannabis.” Stranger

“An outstanding book.” —Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, award-winning Professor of Medicinal Chemistry and Natural Products, Hebrew University, and the grandfather of cannabis research

“Dolce weaves a fascinating tale of the twisted history—and even more twisted pretzel logic—behind marijuana prohibition…Equal parts travelogue, existential discovery and historical exegesis…A well-spun narrative and a damn fun, breezy read about the ubiquitous weed…Dolce writes with clarity and expertise about the plant and its utility to mankind.” The Fresh Toast

“Employing aspects of travel narrative, pop history, journalism, and personal diary, Dolce is a genial and engaging narrator with a knack for breaking down complex science and making it easily digestible for laypeople. Brave New Weed will prove popular with cannabis enthusiasts, and will surprise and entertain the general reader.” —Publishers Weekly

“Fresh, engaging, and thoughtful…The finely-tuned prose is infused with a marvelous sense of curiosity and in-depth journalism. Dolce won me over immediately and held my attention from one page to the next, following him around the world as he explored the past, present and future of cannabis…An engaging, worthwhile read no matter what side of the cannabis argument you happen to be on.” Green Flower

“Part travelogue, part cultural inquiry, part state-of-the-art scientific and medical survey, Joe Dolce’s engaging and entertaining book provides an image makeover for cannabis that’s long overdue.” —Dr. Julie Holland, author of Moody Bitches and editor of The Pot Book

“Best book on marijuana I’ve read in forever! Brave New Weed is a must read...his coverage of all the research on the endocannabinoid system that’s been done in Israel (weed sci capital of the world) alone is amazing.” —Steven Kotler

“A fresh, clear-eyed, and lucidly reported travel guide to the rapidly expanding American subcontinent of medical and not-so-medical marijuana. Dolce is our de Tocqueville for Weed 2.0.” —Brad Gooch, author of Smash Cut

“A superb book, Brave New Weed delivers a sharp, funny, incredibly interesting assessment of modern cannabis. A terrific writer, Dolce examines the scientists and the quacks, the heroes and the hucksters, the cops and the crooks converging in the great game of marijuana.” —Michael Backes, author of Cannabis Pharmacy, The Practical Guide to Medical Marijuana

“A thoroughly enjoyable and highly informative romp through the politics, science, industry and culture of cannabis.” —Ethan Nadelmann, Executive Director, Drug Policy Alliance

“No matter where you fall on the cannabis debate, this book will surprise you, intrigue you, and make you think. Brave New Weed provides a fresh perspective and demonstrates just how little we know about this ubiquitous, multifaceted, and ancient plant.” —Dr. Andrew Weil, author of Mind Over Meds: How to Protect Yourself from Overmedication by Knowing When Drugs Are Necessary and When Alternatives May Be Better

“One of the most fascinating accounts of the state of marijuana. A charming, honest look into pot’s past—and what that says about its future.” Rolling Stone

“The ultimate ‘Just Say Yes!’ book. I got a contact high from reading it.” —John Waters