6 Highly Recommended Books on Cannabis and CBD

When I started seriously exploring a career in the cannabis industry in 2015, I turned to the internet to set me on the right path. Unlike today, there were few people openly talking about cannabis in a way that appealed to someone like me: a female Millennial ready to discard the fears and doubts that stopped me from becoming a champion for my favorite plant. Most of the people whose names were known in cannabis were true activists and advocates--not social media influencers. 

Returning to the roots of this industry is the best way I know how to spread the right message and remind everyone that the important challenges and vast changes that have happened in the last half decade are largely thanks to a small select few who were willing to risk it all to do what so many people now take advantage of with no thanks given, no homage paid. 

I was asked to write about books I found important to the cannabis and CBD movement and I’ll share them with you here. There are countless books out there that I have yet to read but hope to someday. In the meantime here are a few books I keep on my shelf that have helped me develop a deeper understanding of this mystical plant.

The Cannabis Manifesto | By Steve DeAngelo

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Long before my exploration of cannabis shifted from personal use to career prospecting, I’d know about Harborside Health Center, one of Oakland’s longest running dispensaries, and it’s founder, Steve DeAngelo. But it was reading this book that truly made me change the way I viewed my own cannabis consumption. I gained an understanding of the social and political impact that legalization had the potential to make. 

In The Cannabis Manifesto, DeAngelo lists his 8 Wellness Theories, which challenge the paradigm laid out by generations of prohibition, stigmatization, and propaganda. It’s difficult to read this book and not change your perspective on plant medicine, legalization, mass incarceration, and racist terminology used to advance the interests of prohibitionists (i.e. using the term “marijuana” versus cannabis). 

An excellent book for newbies, particularly those who jumped gleefully into the cannabis industry without first recognizing the efforts made, and in too many cases, the lives sacrificed that made legal weed happen.

The Emperor Wears No Clothes | By Jack Herer

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You might be thinking: “I read this one when I was a kid!” 

If you remember The Emperor’s New Clothes then you know the fairy tale by Hans Christian Andersen which serves as the inspiration for The Emperor Wears No Clothes by legendary cannabis advocate, Jack Herer. The emperor is a metaphor for the US Government whose legions of loyal followers fight in his name, even against their good judgment for fear of retaliation--sound familiar? 

Jack Herer presents extensive data on the legal history of hemp, cannabis, prohibition, and Jim Crow laws in this comprehensive book that Herer himself made available for free via his website--further proof of his commitment to cannabis even beyond his lifetime. 

Even though we have Jack to thank for pioneering the cannabis and hemp movements, plenty of “cannabis influencers” and “cannabis experts” only know Jack Herer as a strain name. 

If you want to help turn The Emperor Wears No Clothes into a film, check out the Indiegogo campaign and use your dollars to make an impact. 

Beyond Buds | By Ed Rosenthal

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There are so many methods to consume cannabis and so many tools to choose from beyond rolling flower in paper or a blunt. If you’re new to it all it can be overwhelming and even confusing. Books like Beyond Buds by Ed Rosenthal, another veteran of cannabis advocacy, can help make the process less grueling. 

This book takes you step by step through the process of selecting plant material for processing, examining different extraction methods (including some you can safely try at home), and exploring the kinds of products that can be made and how to apply them. Reading an older edition early on made me better understand how cannabis products are made and which ones appealed most to me.

It’s an excellent book to keep on hand and one you don’t need to read cover to cover if you don’t feel like it, but super informative if you do. 

The Cannabis Encyclopedia | By Jorge Cervantes

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Similar to Beyond Buds, The Cannabis Encyclopedia is an excellent reference book written by veteran cannabis grower, Jorge Cervantes, to have on your bookshelf for reference. Its name is fitting, as it truly is an encyclopedia with a tremendous amount of information, primarily on growing cannabis. It’s a full-color almost-600 page book that goes into great detail about the structure of the cannabis plant, growing techniques, threats to the plant like pests and environmental conditions, and a small section on post-harvest processing. 

Reading this book cover to cover would be quite an undertaking, even for an avid reader like myself. Having it in your library to consult when starting your own at home grow, working in a commercial garden, or diagnosing your plants is what this book is best for.

Ganja Yoga | By Dee Dussault

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Yoga and weed: two of my favorite things individually and collectively. I’ve had the pleasure of being a student in Dee’s GanjaYoga classes in San Francisco and Los Angeles and even have a signed copy of her book Ganja Yoga.

Dee started combining cannabis and yoga 10 years ago when no one was talking openly about their cannabis use. Today she facilitates Ganja Yoga teacher training in various cities. Her book takes the history of these two ancient practices and offers practical applications and excellent information for a canna-curious yogi. She keeps it real by sharing her story about being injured by doing too much of the wrong thing in yoga and explaining that she doesn’t like to be too stoned during sessions. She even offers tips on how to avoid getting too high in class and how to overcome it, should it happen. 

Vitamin Weed | By Michele Ross

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What I love about Vitamin Weed by Michele Ross is the way it marries scientific data with easily digestible information about Clinical Endocannabinoid Deficiency (CECD) and how cannabis can support the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Also, a great reference book, this one’s worth reading even if you skip over some of the super sciencey parts at first. 

Understanding how the body’s functions are impacted by the ECS helps put things into a holistic perspective. Each of the four sections covers an important facet of how the ECS and endocann affect our health. There’s even a step-by-step guide to optimizing the condition of your body to improve the efficacy of cannabis therapies. 

This is an excellent book for those intrigued by the endocannabinoid system or anyone who thinks they may have deficiencies in their ECS. 

A Book and A Soak

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If you want to take your Cannabis reading to the next level, try sinking into a warm relaxing bath accompanied by a  Kush Queen CBD Bath Bomb. Allow your body to really enjoy the benefits of the Cannabis plant, while your mind learns all about it. 

Don’t forget to follow and tag @kushqueenshop & @kushqueenco in your Instagram posts and stories?

Need to grab some CBD Bath Bombs to upgrade your reading experience? Shop Kush Queen below!

Megan Farley