From the Publisher
This encyclopedia encompasses the entire range of naturally-occurring psychoactive substances, and also a great number of man-made synthetic drugs and compounds. Its coverage extends from the use of intoxicating plants by Neanderthal man to the role of hallucinogens and narcotics in contemporary youth culture. Basic data is provided on the botany and chemistry of intoxicants, and the author examines their influence at all levels of our culture and society. He also tackles controversial issues such as legalization, and details the legal classification of illicit substances alongside additional relevant information on detection, prevention, punishment, and other criminological subjects.
This is a very interesting little book; full of facts for the newcommer to psychoactive substances, although the experienced reader may find a lot of the information rather anecdotal. There are a few inexplicable ommisions from the list of substances included, especially considering the inclusion of oddities like Mandrax and others. All in all this is a good book. I found the anecdotal nature of the references a joy to read, and even now, about 2 years after I bought the book, I still pull down off the shelf from time to time.