Humboldt by Emily Brady
Life on America's Marijuana Frontier

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...Brady has constructed a moving portrait of a culture and a region at a crossroads.
-Publishers Weekly

Synopsis

In the vein of Susan Orlean's The Orchid Thief and Deborah Feldman's Unorthodox, journalist Emily Brady journeys into a secretive subculture--one that marijuana built.

Humboldt: Life on America's Marijuana Frontier

Say the words "Humboldt County" to a stranger and you might receive a knowing grin. The name is infamous, and yet the place, and its inhabitants, have been nearly impenetrable. Until now.

Humboldt is a narrative exploration of an insular community in Northern California, which for nearly 40 years has existed primarily on the cultivation and sale of marijuana. It's a place where business is done with thick wads of cash and savings are buried in the backyard. In Humboldt County, marijuana supports everything from fire departments to schools, but it comes with a heavy price. As legalization looms, the community stands at a crossroads and its inhabitants are deeply divided on the issue--some want to claim their rightful heritage as master growers and have their livelihood legitimized, others want to continue reaping the inflated profits of the black market.

Emily Brady spent a year living with the highly secretive residents of Humboldt County, and her cast of eccentric, intimately drawn characters take us into a fascinating, alternate universe. It's the story of a small town that became dependent on a forbidden plant, and of how everything is changing as marijuana goes mainstream.
 

About Emily Brady

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Emily Brady is a former New York Times reporter. Her writing has also appeared in The Village Voice, Time, Columbia Journalism Review, and Plenty.
 
Published June 18, 2013 by Grand Central Publishing. 272 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, History, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Humboldt
All: 3 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 0

Publishers Weekly

Good
on Apr 08 2013

...Brady has constructed a moving portrait of a culture and a region at a crossroads.

Read Full Review of Humboldt: Life on America's M... | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

Kirkus

Good
on Mar 31 2013

A relaxed yet disturbing look at an alternative lifestyle, its heady profits and its hidden costs.

Read Full Review of Humboldt: Life on America's M... | See more reviews from Kirkus

NY Journal of Books

Good
Reviewed by Eric Brody on Jun 10 2013

In a time when political divisions have created red states and blue states, the story of Humboldt reminds us that our country is further Balkanized by local economic interests shaped by history.

Read Full Review of Humboldt: Life on America's M... | See more reviews from NY Journal of Books

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