Witchy Book Reviews! Spells8 Book Club Reviews Masterlist - Sessions I ~ XX

Book Title and Author: Braiding Sweetgrass by Robin Wall Kimmerer

Status? : Finished

My overall rating of the book : 10/10

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?: This book is full of Indigenous Wisdom from an Indigenous person. The author writes in such a way that the stories are relatable, memorable, and we feel the importance of the lessons taught in each chapter. The main theme behind the book is that of animism and living alongside nature rather than outside of it. The author gives suggestions and stories that show us how we have been so disconnected from natural cycles, species, and the wisdom of plants and animals.

My personal thoughts/opinions: This book made me think. It made me laugh, it made me cry, and it made me cringe. As an animist, I know that I am not outside of nature. I am nature and everything around me is also nature. Nothing on this Earth is made from things not of the land, even the plastic keyboard I’m using to type this up right now. It has been hard for me to put into words why I enjoyed this book, but I did. The way it made me think about certain things hasn’t happened in a book like this in a long time. It was sad at certain points, happy at others, and urgent when need be. One part that I really enjoyed was the correlation between the Windigo and our current state of the world. I won’t ruin for everyone because I really recommend everyone read this book, but it makes a lot of sense when you think about it.

An interesting quote from the book: "One afternoon, I sat with my field ecology students by a wiikwegamaa and shared this idea of animate language. One young man, Andy, splashing his feet in the clear water, asked the big question.

‘Wait a second,” he said as he wrapped his mind around this linguistic distinction, “doesn’t this mean that speaking English, thinking in English, somehow gives us permission to disrespect nature? By denying everyone else the right to be persons? Wouldn’t things be different if nothing was an it?’"

– This quote is talking about how when we refer to things outside of ourselves in English, there isn’t really a word for them besides what they are. For example, we talk about a specific tree. It is tall. It is big and brown. I have a lot to say about the way we speak about our non-human relatives, but I’ll leave it at this. Language is important. Words have meaning and affect how you view the world around you, even if you don’t realize it.

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

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Book Title and Author: Witchcraft for Tomorrow by Doreen Valiente

Status: Finished

My overall rating of the book: 8/10

How does this book relate to my magical practice: It provides a solid basis for the basics and the history of Wicca and witchcraft.

My personal thoughts and opinions: I’m not much into history, so for me this book was a bit dry. I suppose I was looking for a basic witchcraft book and what I got was a history book. It’s good though, there is some great sass about Crowley in there. LOL! Just not my cup of tea.

An interesting quote from the book: This quote comes from the part on sex magic and was just a short quote but I feel it should have been highlighted and starred. “The Tantras are indeed much concerned with magic; but magic is black or white according to the intention of the operator and the way in which forces are used.” I personally think that applies to all magic, not just sex magic.

All in all, would I recommend this book?: Yes, especially if you’re into history.

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Book Title and Author: Modern Tarot: Connecting with Your Higher Self through the Wisdom of the Cards by Michelle Tea

Status? : Still Reading; Unfortunately I’ve been working a lot recently so, since there isn’t an audiobook version of this book yet I haven’t gotten very far into it yet.

My overall rating of the book : 8/10

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?: I recently aqquired a tarot deck and have been learning to work with it.

My personal thoughts/opinions: I really like how this author explains things.

An interesting quote from the book:
From the introduction:
"Tarot speaks to our intuition, to our guts. More and more scientific research points to the right-on power of our “guts” to make quick, intuitive, and correct decisions (it’s not actually our intestines sending you these powerful hunches, but two bits of our brains, the ancient Amygdala and the tiny, hidden yet emotionally powerful Insula). "

All in all, would I recommend this book?: From what I’ve read so far yes, I would recommend this, especially for those new to tarot.

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Book Title and Author: Palmistry or Chiromancy Explained by Riley Star **

Status? : Finished

My overall rating of the book : 10/10

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?: This book relates to my craft in the sense of exploring palm reading as an interest.

My personal thoughts/opinions: I enjoyed this book, it’s more of a manual for learning palm reading. One that I will definitely refer back to as I continue my learning.

An interesting quote from the book: “Think of Palmistry as a psychic art where you tune in to your subject’s psyche via their palms, using what is basically psychometry or psychic touch.”

All in all, would I recommend this book?: Yes, I would recommend this book to anyone curious about palmistry.

*** Not finished with Witchcraft for Emotional Wisdom by Paige Vanderbeck

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@MeganB Wow, two winning books- I’m so happy that you enjoyed The Táin and Braiding Sweetgrass so much, Megan! :heart: For anyone interested in Irish mythology/Indigenous wisdom, these sound like great resources. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on both! :blush:

@Amethyst Congrats on finishing Witchcraft for Tomorrow, Amethyst! Sorry it was a bit more history-based than you were hoping for. I also have a tough time getting through history books, the names and dates don’t stick for me :sweat_smile: It does sound like it has some interesting bits though- thank you so much for sharing your review! :two_hearts:

@Torista Thank you for sharing your thoughts about Modern Tarot, Torista! It sounds like it has been a helpful guide as you learn your way through the cards, I’m glad it’s been helping you with your tarot studies! :blush: I hope you continue to enjoy it! :open_book:

@Rowan Bravo on finishing Palmistry or Chiromancy, Rowan- 10/10, it was a great read for you! :grinning: I was never really able to get into Palmistry, but it sounds like this could be a good entryway into that area of magick. I’m glad you enjoyed it so much! I hope that Witchcraft for Emotional Wisdom turns out to be just as good of a read for you :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

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It was a good book and I’m glad I read it, but yeah, history is not my thing in large chunks. LOL!

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Same here, my friend- there’s just something about names and dates that have a tough time sticking in my brain :sweat_smile: It’s a miracle I got through A Song of Ice and Fire haha

But I’m glad it was a worthwhile read despite the focus on history- I’m really glad you enjoyed it! :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

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Book Title and Author: Wicca by Harmony Nice

Status? : Finished

My overall rating of the book : 7/10

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?: It was a good refresher to test if i had forgotten any basic knowledge

My personal thoughts/opinions: I think this is a good book for anyone who has just discovered they are a witch and want to learn more. It was for me slightly repetitive as many new witchcraft and Wicca books i have read have similar knowledge. Overall i am happy i had the opportunity to read the book my favourite YouTuber wrote, and to test whether or not i had forgotten any of my initial learnings as a newbie witch since last year.

An interesting quote from the book: " There are so many misconceptions about the wand * cough * Harry Potter * Cough. "

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

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Hahaha it sounds like the book was written in a fun and playful way- sometimes that makes it easier to pay attention to and learn from! :grinning:

I’m glad you enjoyed the book and the magickal recap it offered for you. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts about Wicca, Khadija! :books::two_hearts:

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Sure no problem, and yes she has got a nice modern way of talking which keeps readers amused wanting to read more. Her YouTube videos are also this way too… :blush:

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This collection of book reviews is from sessions I ~ XV of the Spells8 Book Club.

After reading all the reviews- do you have a witchy book in mind? Join the current session of Book Club in the Activities Category! :books::grinning:

Book Title and Author: The Jar Spell Compendium by Phoebe Anderson

Status? : Finished/Stopped Reading

My overall rating of the book : 3/10 (the cover was pretty)

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?: Spell Jars are something I am interested in discovering a bit more about.

My personal thoughts/opinions: Sadly, this book was as many others out there and just another publication of the facts and information already published 50,000 times. I lost interest quickly once I realized this.

An interesting quote from the book: There really wasn’t one.

All in all, would I recommend this book?: Yes / No, Maybe… To someone just starting out I might suggest it, but honestly there wasn’t anything significant about this book. :neutral_face:

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I’ve fallen prey to the pretty cover thing plenty of times :sweat_smile: Sometimes I think the majority of the production budget (be it a game, book, etc) is spent on designing the cover haha.

Sorry to hear that The Jar Spell Compenium wasn’t the right match for you, Rowan- I hope you can find another, better and more advanced Spell Jar book :open_book: :jar: :sparkles:

Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts about it! :heart:

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I think this is my favorite part of the review :joy: so something I would say :rofl: OMG I can’t stop giggling. Not enough coffee yet… :coffee:

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So i have just finished this morning The Psychic Witch By Mat Auryn i had put off for ages and i loved every bit of it. I love all the exercises and that all the information just clicked for me. I will be sure to see what else he has written. If anyone wants a book that has everything this is the book! :blush: Happy reading everyone! :books: :open_book:

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Enjoy your reading, Nikita! :books::sparkles:

Congrats on finishing your book, @TheMuslimWitch! :partying_face: It sounds like it was a great read for you- that’s the best feeling when it all clicks into place and resonates strongly with your practice :heart:

Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts on The Psychic Witch! :raised_hands:

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Sure anytime No worries… :blush: So far its my favourite witchy book

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@Nikita-mikaelson how was the book? I am currently reading the same one… Did you like it? :blush:

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Book Title and Author: Practicing the Presence of the Goddess: Everyday Rituals to Transform Your World by Barbara Ardinger, Ph.D.

Status?: Finished

My overall rating of the book: 9/10

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?: I wanted to find more ways of honoring the Goddess in my life.

My personal thoughts/opinions: This is a great book, with some really lovely rituals, mostly for solitaries but you could work them for a group. I was really fascinated by the idea of Found Goddesses, Goddesses that you basically make up and name yourself. For instance, in the book, they made up a Goddess of gentle rain and named Her Mere. It was an interesting look at the idea of Gods.

An interesting quote from the book: "But please don’t fall in to the metaphysical trap of thinking that everything that happens to you happens because you drew it to you so you could pay a karmic debt or learn a karmic lesson (whatever that means). Behind this kind of poisonous thinking lurks a more pernicious line of thought, which goes something like this: if I drew all this to me, that means I must be really powerful and am somehow in control of the universe, but I must not be good enough to draw good stuff to me, so I punish myself by drawing bad stuff into my consciousness and life. Phooey. Remember that you are not the center of the universe. Use common sense when you recognize your lessons. Practice that good ol ‘attitude of gratitude.’”

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

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Book Title and Author: The Witch’s Wand: The Craft, Lore, and Magick of Wands and Staffs by Alferian Gwydion MacLir.

Status?: Finished

My overall rating of the book: 9/10

How does this book relate to my magickal practice?: I’ve got a beautiful wand and I wanted to learn just what I could do with it.

My personal thoughts/opinions: This is a great book if you want to learn more about wands, their history, and their making. The author has another book on making wands, if I was crafty and able I’d give it a go! It was a very interesting read! I enjoyed it.

An interesting quote from the book: “When you give another person a wand you make a deep gesture and create a permanent bond between you and the recipient.” and “A general purpose wand should not have too many influences flowing through it. However, the amount of symbolism you include is entirely according to your own taste and style. If it works for you, that is all that matters.”

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

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