Chris Kilham’s new handbook provides a comprehensive guide to the world of ayahuasca shamanism, healing, and spirituality


Evolver Editions (an imprint of North Atlantic Books)
Distributed by Random House

Publicity Contact:
Jane Welch-Westgate
Office: 336-608-4439 cell: 336-209-9276
jane@westgatecom.com or jwestgatepr@gmail

Ayahuasca, the Amazonian psychoactive plant brew, is becoming vastly popular worldwide. As its reputation for profound integrated healing continues to spread, hundreds of thousands of people are seeking shamans and curanderos to help them access its potent healing and spirit-enlivening effects.

Yet, until now, there has been no guide to help people understand this medicine, how to make decisions about where to go for this unique experience, who to trust on their journey, and what to expect along the way.

The Ayahuasca Test Pilots Handbook: The Essential Guide to Ayahuasca Journeying (On sale: November 4, 2014; North Atlantic Books) offers a clear, concise, and delightfully readable book on ayahuasca shamanism, and is a must-have guide for anyone curious about this powerful plant potion. Vivid and engaging, the book provides a crash course in all things ayahuasca, from how to select a shaman, to what you need to know before drinking a cup of the hallucinogenic brew. The author takes readers on a journey that reveals the vast and fascinating world of Amazonian shamanic medicine, bringing to bear his extensive knowledge of plants, shamans, and the Amazon, and provides hilarious and hair-raising accounts of his own journeys with ayahuasca. As entertaining as it is packed with information, this is a must-read book for anyone interested in this field.

About the Author

Called “part David Attenborough, part Indiana Jones”, by the The New York Times, Chris Kilham is an author and educator who has conducted medicinal research in more than 40 countries. He has worked closely with South American shamans for two decades, and has sat in ayahuasca ceremonies with more than 30 different shamans. An in-demand speaker, Kilham lectures extensively throughout the world on holistic health and botanical medicines, and he teaches ethnobotany at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Kilham has appeared as a guest expert on hundreds of radio and television programs, on ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, CNN, and BBC, including the Dr. Oz Show, Oprah, FOX TV, and NPR. As a TV correspondent and guest, he speaks about medicine hunting, traditional botanical medicines, nutraceuticals, environmental and cultural preservation, yoga, and other related topics for a wide variety of audiences. His work has also been featured in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Outside Magazine, Psychology Today, and many other publications.

Praise for The Ayahuasca Test Pilots Handbook

“Finally, a well-researched and well-written book on that most powerful of all Amazonian plants! The best book on ayahuasca since Narby's The Cosmic Serpent.” - Mark Plotkin, ethnobotanist and author, Tales Of A Shaman’s Apprentice

“I can’t imagine that anyone besides Chris Kilham could write the definitive guide to using ayahuasca. In this book, Chris shares his vast knowledge base and experience with la medicina in a way that’s informative, entertaining, and enlightening.”— Robyn Griggs Lawrence, natural-living advocate and former editor of Natural Home magazine

“Kilham writes clearly and compellingly on a complicated topic. Some will appreciate the history, context, and chemistry of la medicina, while all of us who love healing plants will delight in this literary immersion into a sacred journey.” — Amanda McQuade Crawford, MA, Dip. Phyto., RH (AHG), MNZAMH, MCPP

“Chris provides a bridge from the ancient to the modern, interweaving the culturally shamanic understanding of the experience with that of the modern seeker. It is a delightful read for those interested in the psycho-spiritual use of plants and truly is a guide for those seeking the experience.” — Roy Upton, RH, DipAyu, Executive Director, American Herbal Pharmacopoeia

“Ayahuasca is the vision vine, the plant of the gods, the most powerful tool in the repertoire of the shaman of the Northwest Amazon. More and more people from all corners of the world are discovering its wonder. It's not a simple thing, and certainly not for the fainthearted; taking ayahuasca is a chance to tear open the placenta of ordinary reality and emerge transformed. This is a book that can help you on the journey.”— Wade Davis, author of One River