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Poison: An Illustrated History    by Joel Levy order for
by Joel Levy
Order:  USA  Can
Lyons Press, 2011 (2011)
* * *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

This lavishly illustrated paperback takes the reader on a fascinating journey through the mysterious world of potions, magical herbs, and psychoactive preparations substances at once alluring and terrifying.

From Greek philosophers to Russian spies, poisons have a long and colorful history. Not only can they kill but in some instances they also are utilized to do everything from smooth wrinkles and calm the nerves to cure illnesses.

The author not only offers information about some of history's most notorious poisoners and their victims, but he also explains the many roles lethal substances have played in history and culture, science and religion and medicine.

By the time you finish this book you'll understand the difference between poisons, toxins and venoms as well as know the five stages of poisoning and what you should really do if a poisonous snake bites you.

Once you have read a few pages of Poison you'll be addicted! Joel Levy manages to make this subject so entertaining and he augments the main text with so many unusual tidbits that you'll be a minor expert on the topic by the time you reach the final chapter.

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