Customer Reviews from Amazon Vine, January 2014

Amazon Vine readers have been given the opportunity to preview “Big Weed” and have given it an average of 5 out of 5 stars. All you reviewers out there, thanks for the great feedback!
The following reviews were originally published on Amazon.com.

Very interesting and informative book

5.0 out of 5 stars

As someone who uses medicinal cannabis for pain, I found this book to be very interesting. Christian Hageseth takes you on his journey as Colorado becomes one of the first states to legalize cannabis, both medicinal and recreational. He shares his ideas for building the first weedery. A $30 million complex and tourist destination featuring 50 ft high cathedral ceilings, a bar and restaurant overlooking the outdoor greenhouse, a gift shop and public cottages for visiting artists, musicians, and craftspeople. He shares all of the ups and downs and trials and tribulations of being on the ground floor of the medicinal cannabis industry.I have Fibromyalgia and Arthritis and my body does not tolerate opiods so I really had no relief for my pain unless I wanted to exchange pain for being physically ill from the opiods. One day someone suggested I try cannabis. I was totally against it and said no way for 2 years. Then one day when the pain was really bad, I decided to try it. My first try was eating a piece of cannabis infused cheesecake. Unfortunately, I had no idea what I was doing, having never tried pot before and I ate too much and thought I was going to die. Even though the feeling was extremely unpleasant, I didn’t have any pain, so that was something.I decided to try it again in very small doses. When I say small, I mean like a tiny sliver, like a splinter, of hard candy infused with cannabis, and even that was too much for me. I just don’t like the way it feels. So, I started making my own capsules, in a strength I could tolerate, and only taking them at night for sleep. What a difference! Even though I don’t take it during the day because I don’t like the feeling, just being able to get that good sleep made a world of difference in my pain levels and I don’t have nearly as many bad flares as I used to. I am sold on the benefits of cannabis now, but I wish I could get some of the high CBD stuff that doesn’t have the THC, which is the stuff that makes you feel high.

Anyway, getting back to the book, the author tells you some of the stories he’s witnessed with patients who tried cannabis. There are some really miraculous stories of survival in cancer patients, children with epilepsy who were virtually a shell of a child who “woke up” and stopped having seizures after being put on cannabis oil. The stories I have read and heard are amazing and I can’t believe there are people out there who would see the improvement in these children and yet want to deny them a chance at life because they are brainwashed into thinking that cannabis is evil. Cannabis is no more “evil” than alcohol. Actually, cannabis is way less “evil” than alcohol.

The author also goes into detail about how to get into the business the right way, and why his company has stood while other companies have failed. And it’s all about ethics and having your patients leave knowledgeable rather than selling them some cannabis and sending them out the door to try it themselves, like I did. It’s about caring about your customers, and not just selling it to get rich. If you’re in it to get rich, you’re in the wrong business.

If you want to learn more about the cannabis industry, this is a pretty good book, written by someone who was in it in the beginning, and shares the entire process that he went through while creating one of the biggest and fastest growing cannabis companies in the world.

January 24, 2015


Ever ask why alcohol and tobacco are legal but weed isn’t?

5.0 out of 5 stars 

This book was an absolute joy to read and one that I highly recommend. In fact, I’d go so far as to say that this book should be put into as many hands as possible, due to the sensible and logical musings of author Christian Hageseth on the business of marijuana growing, coupled with a general history of the plant throughout the years and the criminalization of it that was put in place by some pretty idiotic people, parties and groups.

It’s pretty much the equivalent of listening to Bill Nye or Neil deGrasse Tyson destroy Creationists.

Big Weed tells a story of one man’s foray into the world of legal marijuana sales, what it took for him to get there, the trials and tribulations he experienced, where he currently stands and what the future potentially holds not just for him and his related business ventures but the industry as a whole. It becomes plainly obvious early on where he stands on the matter but what comes across even more is how passionate he is in regards to it, something that resonates on each and every page. I kind of wish that the book went into even more detail about the business side of things only because at just over 200 pages, the book goes by in a flash and it kind of felt like there were some gaps in the timeline that could have been fleshed out a little more. Even with the book’s considerably short length, it’s loaded with a good amount of information. I can say that I read this book and walked away from it having felt like I learned a little something from it, which is pretty impressive.

It’s obvious the author knows his stuff and looking at the Notes section makes it clear that he was willing to put the research into it also, giving the book an air of authenticity and honesty that other sources may lack, making them hard to take seriously. Big Weed makes its case plain and simple and quite frankly, it’s like a breath of fresh air to read this book and be reminded that there are still some people that can have a sensible, constructive discussion on the subject. Hageseth goes on to discuss the many contradictions of marijuana related laws in our country and popular opinion on the drug, long demonized even after it’s many positive uses have been proven time and time again in various medical theses and publications over the last few decades.

Have you ever asked why alcohol and tobacco are legal yet weed isn’t? Have you ever questioned who would benefit from the current set up and why they’d want to keep this plant from being widely used when it’s safer than just about any bottle you can grab from a liquor store shelf or over the counter prescription drug you can get at a pharmacy? Are you still under the impression that America’s War on Drugs was a noble effort or can you see it for the failure that it so obviously has become? Or are you simply content living with the belief that weed was put here by the Devil himself in an effort to derail us all and send us straight to hell carrying a basket of Hostess cakes?

Then do yourself a favor and read this book. You’ll either find that you were right all along or that maybe, just maybe the stuff ain’t as bad as Nancy Reagan or your dear old Ma made it out to be. Think about that last bit as you consider how many lives have been destroyed by the ridiculous amount of jail time slapped on those caught with some weed in their pocket or who happened to be growing a couple of plants at home for personal consumption.

The time is ripe for a book like Big Weed. not just merely on the strength of its strong argument that much good can come from proper harvesting of this plant but also in its tendency to be nothing but straightforward with the facts and its desire to educate those who may come at it from either a positive or negative angle. Though you’d probably need a little more than this book to get yourself started in the marijuana business if that’s what you’re looking to do, this should be considered required reading for anyone interested in the subject. It does a great job at detailing not just the successes of Mr. Hageseth’s business but the pitfalls he personally experienced and the potential for more. I wouldn’t be surprised if this book becomes a hot seller and maybe even a bible of sorts for some. It’s really good reading with a lot of useful info and an honest eye’s view on the hypocrisy of things as they exist in their current state.

Finally, the one aspect of the book that I appreciated the most was that it left me with the idea and even the feeling that even in these trying days where nothing’s guaranteed, you can still come out ahead in this country and still make a living doing something that you love if you’re willing to make the effort.

January 22, 2015


Excellent read.

5.0 out of 5 stars

Back in the day, before Jim joined the Navy and was subject to random drug tests, and now with his working for the military, we used to be card carrying members of NORML (national organization for the reformation of marijuana laws). I have always thought that smoking a little MJ being illegal while being able to chug down a bottle of Jack was ridiculous. Legalize it, tax it, has been my rallying cry.

So when Colorado took the big step I was stoked, not stoked enough to move there, but excited to see what I think is a move in the right direction. Reading “Big Weed” about taking growing Marijuana from a 40,000 a year medical faculty to a 4 million a year company was interesting. Right before I read the book I had seen an article on the growers and sellers in CO having issues because of banking, and it’s discussed in this book. Because MJ is still illegal federally, and most banks are under the federal reserve, they can’t accept “drug money.” This is one of the reasons laundering is such a big deal. So people who are legally growing MJ can’t have a banking account for their business.

This is just one of the fascinating aspects of being in weed business. The author’s voice is pleasant, fun, and interesting. I highly recommend this book no matter which side of the fence your on, or if you are sitting smack dab on the fence, just the nuances, adventures, experience, legal issues, and in some ways state rights vs federal laws (also being seen in the arena of same sex marriage) playing out is a real education in how our country works.

January 22, 2015


A businessman’s life of service

5.0 out of 5 stars

Marijuana businessman Hageseth and journalist D’Agnese made this book informative and entertaining. This is a bonafide business book yet to me it was like watching a movie.

Hageseth’s early life included use of this medicinal plant, and that seems to have been important to his financial success now. He concentrated and sampled. Hegaseth honed his craft using all methods of professional development available to him, including educational business trips – always improving his practice.

I think this book will inspire readers to not to give up on their dream.

January 21, 2015


A well-written business memoir

4.0 out of 5 stars

This book grows on you like weed! At first it reads like a man bragging about his fortunes in the MJ business, and in some ways, it is. Apparently the MJ business is the only truly profitable business the author has been in. Being a Colorado resident, he learns early to enjoy weed, going back to middle school. What this book is is a memoir of sorts, and is the story of how the author gets wealthy in the legal marijuana business and wins the first ever Cannabis Cup for his brand. It doesn’t start out legally.

The story quickly begins with a short biography of the author and how he started smoking MJ at an early age. Then the business side of him bites his butt and he wants to get into the market share when Colorado legalizes weed for recreational purposes. Here’s where the writing gets laid back and quite witty, without being too boastful. This book is Christian Hageseth’s story of how he breaks into the “weedery” business and learns to make a profit from it all, and most of the time, the transactions are in cash because marijuana profits on a federal level are still considered “drug money.”

He also likes to share his knowledge of marijuana, from both a user and a businessman’s point of view. The biology of marijuana is quite interesting: there are perhaps around 5000 strains of marijuana, and the THC values of weed have grown from a mere three percent to over 20 percent since the days of Woodstock. Hageseth also goes into the more modern history of MJ in this country, saying the ban of the weed is a racist endeavor because it’s popular with the Mexicans who once lived in the Southwest when it was still part of Mexico.

By chapter Three he’s talking about how he gets into the MJ growing business, and this is an interesting read. There’s a lot required to get a safe, healthy, indoor growing warehouse started, and there’s plenty more trial-and-error just to make a name for oneself.

The tone gets more into the legal aspect of growing MJ about halfway into the narrative, but it’s still an interesting read. “I know it’s legal,” he quotes one cop as telling him, “but no one’s telling us how to handle this stuff” (87). Weederies may be legal in Colorado, but so many laws still see weed as an illegal substance, and legal growers still face many barriers. Yet despite a few failures early on, Hageseth’s passion for the plant makes him determined to be the best grower in the area, even so much as traveling to Amsterdam to gain first-hand advice from experienced head shops. His business thrives to the point of needing to build even larger sub-terranean basements in which to grow the plants. The plant has become his passion and it shows in the determined tone of this story. May his experience help future pot growers push for total legality of the plant.

January 13, 2015


 

Sheds a (grow) light on a fascinating business

5.0 out of 5 stars

I’ve just moved to a fully pot-legal state, and I’m a licensed provider, two good reasons to read this book.

The real reason I’d recommend this book is that it’s a great read, funny, fascinating, a frolicking romp through the business world of marijuana by a man whose tolerance for business (and pot) is staggering. This book is one good tale – and bad pun – after another, while letting you in on a business that is just coming into the (grow) light.

Highly recommended for the curious, the angry, the visionary, and the potential comrade.

January 13, 2015


Entertaining, Inspiring Story of One Man’s Adventures in Legal Weed

5.0 out of 5 stars

This is an interesting, easy to read book about one man’s adventures in the legal weed business. It is particularly good for would-be entrepreneurs because Hageseth’s tale is an inspiring one. He failed many times before he finally succeeded, and he also had many naysayers tell him his dream wasn’t possible.

This is not a step-by-step guide to starting your own weed business. However, the author includes many useful tips about how to go about it, and perhaps more important, what NOT to do. It is also not a legal guide, though, again, there are some insights and anecdotes along those lines.

Big Weed, however, is an interesting, entertaining read about this unique time in American history.

January 13, 2015


An inspiring journey into the unknown

5.0 out of 5 stars

One man’s Roller Coaster ride through the beginning of a new era! Truly an inspiring, witty semi biographical story. From a user to a true innovator in the legal Marijuana business. This is his trip through the pitfalls of starting in a new business in the crazy start of the weed rush. The highs and lows this man goes through are pretty intense, not something most of us would be able to go through. People like him will pave the way for the future of rebuilding America! A very important and on point tale. And you know what? It’s very entertaining! Go get it !

January 12, 2015


One mans entrepreneurial vision for making a profitable and successful legal business selling weed

5.0 out of 5 stars

When I picked up this book I thought it would be more of a business type book based upon the business of selling weed legally. It does talk about that but the story is more of a biography of one mans experience in business and then how he got into the weed business. How he watched the market to be able to anticipate the legality of where and when to be able to create a profitable business for himself. This is a great story about one entrepreneurs journey in this industry and how he did it. It is inspiring, and makes you think about weed in a more business like sense rather than as a big bad drug that is taking down our country. It is very eye opening and will have you learning about who uses weed, why they use it and how it helps people. Thus the reasons for it being legal in so many states now. Great read, very informative and motivating.

January 8, 2015


Inspiring from a business point of view and a changing America

5.0 out of 5 stars

Let Hageseth take you on an exciting journey of our country’s awakening! He points out all the reasons marijuana became illegal nearly a century ago (mostly racism against Mexicans and a laughable movie, Refer Madness, that blames MJ for violence) and why all the politicians strove to keep it illegal for financial reasons. Yet as the author points out, when used by an adult, MJ is less harmful than prescription drugs, alcohol, and sugar.

This fascinating book covers the three types of MJ, the history of why it was banned, the changes in cops’ attitudes from 2009 till the present, the issues of being an MJ entrepreneur (including not being able to use banks!), how it affected his family life, why 25 states that made medical MJ legal are benefiting, and much, much more.

Hageseth had the advantage of already running a few successful businesses. But in this booming biz, within six years his Green Man company grossed 20 million dollars and won two industry prizes.

One of the last chapters discusses the future of the industry. He predicts recreational MJ will be legal throughout the US by 2020, and big corporations will get in on the action. Sadly, when Big Agra, Big Tobacco, and Big Pharma are involved, it’s likely that MJ will be grown with pesticides and even become GMO. The doses will be standardized. Most will prefer edibles.

But things are changing fast and the stigma will be gone soon. His visionary stance at the end may even bring tears to your eyes, as it did mine.

PS: When you read the book, you will wonder why its release date wasn’t set for April 20 instead of April 21!

January 7, 2015


You too can live the good life of a pot grower

5.0 out of 5 stars

I grabbed this book since I have been curious about this new turn of direction in some states to legalize marijuana growing and selling for its medicinal benefits. This was written by an innovative pot seller where it is legal and not only makes a fascinating read for its own sake, but is also fairly informative to anyone who wants to live the good life as a legal pot seller or grower.

This is an adventure that many people are embarking on with mixed success. We learn there are not only high points but perils and pitfalls for anyone starting out in this new industry. Not the least of the problems is the introduction of big tobacco, pharmaceuticals, and other large corporate interests in this hugely profitable industry. Your little entrepreneur is up against the giants and needs to carve out a little niche of his own to survive in the coming dog eat dog world of legalized marijuana.

This was a fast easy read and was never dull. The writing is excellent and as someone who doesn’t often read entire books, I couldn’t put this one down. I was quickly caught up in the adventures of the pot sellers and even can imagine this book being turned into a somewhat humorous adventure movie. It’s informative and suspenseful. And of course it makes one think that maybe they can do it too. If you are like me you will want to read all about it from someone who is living the dream. I found this to be an excellent book.

January 1, 2015 

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