📝 Spells8 Book Club XX - Readers' Reviews!

Wishing a very warm welcome to all of the Witchy Readers! :open_book:

The latest reading period for Book Club [Aug 12 - Sep 9] has now ended - thank you to everyone who joined in!

Books & Members This Reading Period:

  • Why Religion Matters: The Fate of the Human Spirit in an Age of Disbelief by Huston Smith
    @TheTravelWitch_Bry

  • Hoodoo For Beginners by Mamanu Niarè Mirella Williamson
    @jan_TheGreenWitch

  • The Magical Writing Grimore: Use the Word as Your Wand for Magic, Manifestation, and Ritual by Lisa Marie Basile
    @Amethyst

  • Celtic Magic by: DJ Conway
    @Siofra_Strega

  • Witchcraft - 4 Books in One (Book 1 Wicca) by Scott Hawthorn
    @JoeyP

  • Green Witchcraft II: Balancing Light & Shadow by Ann Moura (Aoumiel)
    @Amaris_Bane (continuing from last round)

  • Encountering The Dark Goddess: A Journey into the SHadow Realms by Frances Billinghurst
    @Amaris_Bane

  • Shadow Work Journal and Workbook by Victoria Stevens
    @Mia.1

  • Wild Magic: Celtic Folk Traditions for the Solitary Practitioner by: Danu Forest @Siofra_Strega

  • Witchcraft for the Home by: Mystic Dylan
    @Rowan

Even if you are not listed above but you read a book during this reading period/ you decided to read a different book than listed- you are very welcome to share and discuss here too!


Time to share your thoughts with your coven! :star_struck:

This discussion post will serve as a place to share your thoughts and opinions on the book you chose.

  • :heart_eyes: If you loved your book and think everyone should read it- awesome! Talk about your favorite points or something you learned.
  • :woman_shrugging: If you didn’t connect with the book- consider explaining why it wasn’t for you.
  • :angry: Absolutely hated your book of choice? Warn others to stay away!

This is a great place to share your love for books and find recommendations for new books to read :+1:


Picture from Pixabay

Your book review can be as simple or elaborate as you’d like :writing_hand:

If you’re not sure what to talk about, here is a suggested format you can use. Feel free to write as little or as much as you’d like!

Book Title and Author:

Status? : Finished / Still Reading

My overall rating of the book : ???/10

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?:

My personal thoughts/opinions:

An interesting quote from the book: " "

All in all, would I recommend this book?: Yes / No

Remember that your review is uniquely yours- this is a chance to let your opinions and voice be heard :raised_hands:

Please keep in mind that others may have opinions that differ from yours- when responding to the thoughts of others please always show respect! Remember that 100 people will read 1 book and have 100 different experiences. That’s what makes sharing interesting :heart:


What if I didn’t finish my book / joined late? :raised_hand:

No worries at all!

You are welcome to share your thoughts about the part you have read so far. If you joined the session late and have just started, feel free to talk about your expectations for your book. You can continue reading it into the next reading period.

And whether you read a book or not - you are very welcome to jump in and discuss what others share about their books! :handshake:


Picture from Pixabay

Deadlines and Dates :spiral_calendar:

You have 5 weeks to share your thoughts and discuss- until the next Readers’ Review Post appears in the forum!

Deadline for Reviews for this Session: Friday, October 14

While you have plenty of time for reviews, know that the next reading period will begin in one week:

The Next Reading Session will Begin: Friday, September 16

On this day a post will appear where you can announce your next book (or continue with your current reading!).

Until then, you can find more info about the club in the Book Club FAQ.

Witch reading
Gif from Giphy

It can be hard to find the time and motivation to read on your own- hopefully book club helped provide a bit of motivation and that it led to some wonderful new knowledge and discoveries in your Craft :books:

Thanks again for joining in and being a part of Book Club! I am so excited to read your thoughts and learn more about the book you spent time with :blush::open_book:

Blessed be! :sparkles:

:books: :heart: :infinite_roots:

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Confession: I struggled to get into this. I was planning to get some reading done on the boat, but the book never made it into my suitcase :shushing_face:

The topic of comparing and exploring various religions and spiritualities is really interesting to me, but reading it just felt dry and I just didn’t click with the writer’s tone. This one will stay on the shelf for a while- perhaps the right time to read it is further down the road!

I’ll have to pick out something more exciting for next session! :face_with_monocle: :books:

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Even though it sounds like a dry read, I’m adding it to my TBR list because it sounds really interesting!


I admit that I haven’t read nearly as much as I want to. I had a huge-to-me goal of reading 25 books this year. I’ve only read 5 :joy:


My Storygraph Profile

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I enjoyed this book! I’m glad I picked it out!

Book Title and Author: The Magical Writing Grimore: Use the Word as Your Wand for Magic, Manifestation, and Ritual by Lisa Marie Basile

Status: Finished

My overall rating of the book: 10/10!

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?: I am a word witch, and this helped me with ideas of how to manifest my words into magic.

My personal thoughts/opinions: This is a great book, full of writing prompts, self-healing, and shadow work. Really a great book for those witches who are working through things and who like to journal. I couldn’t recommend it enough!

An interesting quote from the book: “The Magical Writing Grimore is a love letter to the magic thread that connects out voice to the beautiful beyond. Throughout this book, what you read should be seen as a guide, not omnipotent text. It is important that you know that this experience is yours to modify, to make your own, and to translate into your own style and voice. I encourage you to do these exercises in whatever language you like, or in tandem with your own cultural or spiritual traditions.”

And:

“What is most important to me during spellcasating is that I feel focused, that I have energy to harness, and that I am directing it clearly. The right words help me achieve this state. I like to enchant my spells by beautifying my language: I often write spells as poetry and in doing so, I infuse my own creative energy into my spell work. Because creativity is magic itself- the magic of creating something out of nothing.”

All in all, would I recommend this book?: Yes!

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Book Title and Author: Celtic Magic by: DJ Conway (Llewellyn Publications)*

Status?: Finished

My overall rating of the book: 8 /10

How does this book relate to my magical practice?: I am learning Celtic Spirituality, culture, and paganism. So many of the Celtic practices resonate with me so much connection it’s such an amazing feeling.

My personal thoughts/opinions: I really enjoyed learning about the Celtic path & the different exercises & reflections in the book. Different stories about the deities & associations of different colors & candles & rituals & tools…

The only issue that I had is in the reference tables & associations for the Gods/Goddesses put opposing Gods/Goddesses in the same associations or known qualities.

An interesting quote from the book:

”Pagan-thinking people do not tend to be followers of the accepted social norm. They are innovators, thinkers, pursuers of wisdom and spiritual growth. They know that improving you, the person, and your immediate life is as important as perfecting the spiritual you, or the soul.”

D.J. Conway. Celtic Magic (Llewellyn’s World Religion & Magick) (Kindle Locations 91-92). Kindle Edition.” (Pg:159)

All in all, would I recommend this book?:

  • Yes, but keep in mind to further read & learn about Celtic Deities & their proper associations & correspondences.

The “bibliography” for the author uses sources from 1956 (ish) to 1986 (ish). A lot more has been researched, learned, and written about since those times.

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  • Wild Magic: Celtic Folk Traditions for the Solitary Practitioner by: Danu Forest @Siofra_Strega

I am still currently reading this one, but I have loved it so far & actually got halfway through & started over. Even starting over, I still come across things that somehow didn’t register the first time that I read through it :laughing:

I will be continuing this book into the next Book Club though… :smiling_face:

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Book Title and Author: Green Witchcraft II: Balancing Light & Shadow by Ann Moura (Aoumiel)

Status? : Finished

My overall rating of the book : 8/10

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?: I am heavy into practicing green witchcraft but I also work with two Death deities or “Dark” deities. Understanding how to use Dark Magick will help me balance my practice.

My personal thoughts/opinions: The book focuses mainly on Dark Magick from a green magick standpoint. I would have liked more information on balancing Light and Dark but overall it is a great book. There are many rituals on connecting with the Dark Goddess and how to use Dark Magick for good. As with her first book, Ann stresses that magick is neutral and the user’s intention makes it good/bad. We all have a shadow side and understanding it allows us to become whole.

An interesting quote from the book: " " (I’ll add this when I get home and have the book handy)

All in all, would I recommend this book?: If you are into green magick and wish to learn more about the dark/shadow side, then yes.

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Book Title and Author: Encountering the Dark Goddess: A Journey into the Shadow Realm by Frances Billinghurst

Status?: Still Reading

My overall rating of the book: 9/10

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?: Working with Hel, one of the aspects of the Dark Goddess, I wanted to learn more about her.

My personal thoughts/opinions: I’m only about a quarter of the way into it but so far I’m enjoying it. The first part of the book gives information about the Dark Goddess and the importance of journeying to the Underworld to meet her when she appears in your life. She appears at times when a transformation is needed. As I am in the middle of my own shadow work and transformation, this book is turning into more than just learning about the Dark Goddess for me.

An interesting quote from the book: “It is only when we realize that to fight against this change and that hanging on is futile and is actually only adding to our pain and anguish that our only option is to completely surrender to the process, whatever that may be, and accept what were are undergoing. This does not necessarily mean the journey we find ourselves undertaking will be any less painful, but there does tend to be even a minute degree of clarity in the process, offering us the opportunity to breathe when we learn to ride the waves instead of attempting to battle against them.” This is in reference to when the Dark Goddess appears at times that transformation is needed for our soul’s evolution.

All in all, would I recommend this book?: Still deciding

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I am almost finished with my book choice, I will be posting my review in a couple of days.
Bless-ed Be Witches,

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@MeganB Go for it! The reviews are really positive- I think I just might not be in the right headspace for the book right now haha. I hope whenever you get around to reading it that you enjoy it! :blush:

And Storygraph looks really neat- a while back I tried Goodreads that has a similar goal-setting function, but I ended up forgetting about and not using it :sweat_smile:


@Amethyst Hooray- it sounds like you found another great one! You’ve really got a good eye for picking out books, Amethyst, I’m so happy you’ve discovered all these treasures! :books::sparkles: I absolutely love the focus this book has on writing- it feels like a perfect thing to pick up when you need a boost of creativity and encouragement :muscle: :blush: Thanks so much for sharing your review!


@Siofra_Strega Congrats again on finishing Celtic Magic, and I hope that you continue to enjoy Wild Magic- it must be a really great read to want to dive back in and absorb the material again! Happy reading :open_book: :two_hearts:


@Amaris_Bane That is really interesting how the book combines green magic with the shadowy side of the practice- it really sounds like a great read for you and your practice, Amaris! :raised_hands:

I’m so glad you were able to find more information about Hel- this sounds like it’s been a very interesting read! I imagine there will be more wisdom about the Underworld and how to work with shadow magick the deeper you go in the book. I hope you continue to enjoy it!

Thanks so much for your reviews, Amaris! :heart:


@Rowan It’s exciting to be in the homerun of a book (and bittersweet if it’s a really good one!) I hope you enjoy it right up to the last page- happy reading, Rowan! :open_book:

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You’re welcome! You might like to flip through it one day if you need ideas for the Weekly Witchy Challenge. One of the projects in the book was writing your own Epitaphs, like Hecate. It was very interesting.

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Adding this to my Want to Read list!

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Glad you liked my review! It’s a good book, at least I think so.

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Ohhhhhh it is always great to have extra creativity-boosting resources on hand! :grinning:

And Epitaphs are the texts written on tombstones, yes? Are they also used for deities in rituals or as an offering? It sounds really interesting- I’d love to know more! :star_struck:

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Sorry, I think I either wrote it wrong, or spell check got to me. Names, like Hecate Brimo, Hecate Soitiera, things like that.

For instance, in this body, I am Kasie the brave, the coward, the student, the teacher, the witch, the silly … it goes on and on until you want to stop. It was a really interesting ritual.

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Ohhhh spell check always switching things up on us :laughing: No worries at all- that really does sound like an interesting ritual! :star_struck:

I really like the idea of using opposing traits/opposite things (like “student” and then “teacher”)- it makes it seem like these things are two sides of the same coin, coming together in a wonderful multifaced entity :coin: :sparkles:

Thanks so much, @Amethyst- it’s a great idea from what seems like a really interesting book! :open_book: :two_hearts:

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You’re welcome! It’s a good book!

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Good afternoon. Thank you for your honesty. This book :open_book: sounds interesting :thinking: I think I will look into it.

Medea

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Book Review for:

I recommend this book for anyone who wants to be educated on a very high level on Hoodoo for what it is, where it derived and what the basic practices are. It’s very interesting, however if you want a complete primer on Hoodoo and education at a deeper level, you should either start here and be prepared to move past it to more robust volumes, or start there with other readings.

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Ooo @jan_TheGreenWitch … for informational value I would like to know more right now… I don’t know if I would practice any, but I’d rather learn about it & decide that way than just write it off because I honestly don’t know much about it. Thank you! (adds to future reading list…) :hugs:

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