Praise for Memoirs of an Addicted Brain

“Developmental neuroscientist Lewis examines his odyssey from minor stoner to helpless, full-blown addict….as [he] unspools one pungent drug episode after another, he capably knits into the narrative an accessible explanation of the neural activity that guided his behavior. From opium pipe to orbitofrontal cortex, a smoothly entertaining interplay between lived experience and the particulars of brain activity.” Kirkus Book Reviews

“Memoirs of an Addicted Brain…takes on all of human longing. Unlike many of his brain science colleagues and fellow addicts, Dr. Lewis can write.  One moment, he is remembering the details of his life as an addict; the next, he is reconstructing, based on newer scientific findings, what the drugs were doing to his brain.  The result is not just a book about a brain on drugs, but a picture of addiction as an unavoidable urge of human nature.” Ian Brown, Globe & Mail

“An engrossing and vividly written swirl of raw personal drama, themes of despair, loss and triumph, brilliantly rendered brain science, and clear thinking on the experience and essence of addiction. Illuminating even to experts, accessible to all.” Gabor Maté, MD, author of In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters With Addiction

“Great writers create new genres, and that’s exactly what Lewis has done in writing the memoir of his addicted brain. It’s a heartwrenching story, beautifully written, and no one should be allowed to pronounce about addiction without having read it.” Evan Thompson, PhD, Professor of Philosophy, University of Toronto

“Lewis teaches us how normal yearnings and strivings can be short-circuited by drug addiction. In the end, his triumph is remarkable, and not only because he emerges from serial addictions to become a successful neuroscientist. He also recorded his young life with such perceptiveness, and recounts it for us now with such vividness, that his analysis of brain mechanisms comes alive in a way that is unprecedented in modern literature.” Prof. Don Tucker, Department of Psychology, University of Oregon

“Dr. Lewis has captured how our brain systems make our realities and how our realities buffet our brain systems. He presents a clear explanation of the horror and self-destructiveness of mind-altering drug use, of the drug addict as victim of inner and outer pressures and demons, and of the evolutionary strengths of our brain gone awry.” Prof. Sid Segalowitz, Department of Psychology, Brock University

“This is a splendid, moving, and highly informative book on drug addiction, described from the inside of the mind as well as from the inside of the brain. It is written very well by an expert on both perspectives.” Nico H.Frijda, PhD, Emeritus Professor of Psychology, University of Amsterdam

“Marc Lewis vividly conveys the alluring yet dangerous universe of mind-altering drugs and the painful paths of addiction and recovery. His experiences with LSD, heroin, and other powerful chemicals are woven together with clear explanations of the brain mechanisms underlying drug effects and addiction. Beautifully crafted and illuminating on multiple levels, this is a book you won’t want to set down.” Kent Berridge, PhD, James Olds Collegiate Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience, University of Michigan.

“Memoirs of an Addicted Brain may be the most original and illuminating addiction memoir since Thomas De Quincey’s seminal Confessions of an Opium Eater. What makes it such a standout from the genre’s overflow of self-indulgent mediocrities isn’t merely its supple intelligence and subtle style but the unique perspective of the author.”

“Memoirs of an Addicted Brain makes a valiant effort to be both diary (of a misspent youth) and textbook on the neurology of drug addiction.” Winnipeg Free Press

“Opponents of addiction memoirs complain that the attention- grabbing genre is tapped out…Cannily, in Memoirs of an Addicted Brain, Marc Lewis mixes the tried and true with a novel approach–a primer on the neural chemistry of addiction…The long fall and gradual recovery is an inherently appealing story, and Lewis tells it well. And for genre skeptics, Lewis supplies a surplus of educational material.” Vancouver Sun

“[Memoirs of an Addicted Brain] is compelling, and for readers grappling with addiction, Mr. Lewis’s mechanistic approach might well be novel enough to inspire them to seek the happiness he now enjoys.” The Wall Street Journal

“Marc Lewis’s Memoirs of an Addicted Brain is a cracker…The science is up to the minute. Lewis clearly knows his stuff.” The Australian

“As strange, immediate and artfully written as any Oliver Sacks case-study, with the added scintillation of having been composed by its subject.” The Guardian (UK)

“A surprising and charming addition to this crowded genre.” The Boston Globe