Magickware\’s Pagan Book Reviews

July 25, 2007

On Sabatical

Filed under: Uncategorized — magickware @ 10:16 am
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Merry Hi Dear Readers,

You may be wondering where the new book reviews are. I find that as a new author/illustrator myself, that gobs of my time are devoted to marketing my own books, as well as developing the newest book for release. (Watchers due out in mid 2008.) Seeing as there are only 24 hours in a day and I need some of them to eat and sleep, something had to give. And what has had to give has been my leisure reading time.

Yup you heard me, I did the reading and review writing in my spare time, and now I have less of it, so it’s taking me a long time to read any recent books, and even longer to get their reviews written and posted. I am hopeful that I will be able to return to a regular schedule of reading and writing reviews, but until that time, when ever that might be, new reviews will be few and far between.

Wish me luck with my new books, and with my upcoming ones as well. Blessings!

Lyon

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July 14, 2007

Composing Magic by Elizabeth Barrette

Filed under: Book Reviews — magickware @ 4:10 am

Compsoing Magic Composing Magic: How to Create Magical Spells, Rituals, Blessings, Chants, and Prayer
This is the first book I have had the pleasure to read which really gets into the nitty-gritty of putting words to paper for ritual and ceremonial uses.

As a children’s book writer, I have read my fair share of writing manuals, including books on poetic forms. Many of them left me scratching my head and wondering if I had any grasp on the English language at all or if I should just throw in the towel and let someone with a Masters degree in English Lit have all the fun.

Ms. Barrette’s book wasn’t one of these. Her descriptions of the differing forms of poetry and prose was accessible to anyone in plain, sraight-forward description. Each form was demonstrated by an example, many of which were the author’s own creations, as well as examples from more famous authors’ writings. What I especially liked was the inclusion of the historic and cultural explanations of each form of writing. The author also commented on how the form could best be used in a Pagan setting.

Each chapter examines a particular topic or form of writing, followed by a series of exercises meant to encourage the reader to use the knowledge from the chapter in a constructive and practical manner. Each chapter builds on the ones previous, with the suggestion to return to earlier exercises with the newly acquired information.

The final chapters in the book encourage the writer who wishes to become published with practical and down-to-earth advice on this tough but rewarding occupation.

The book contains footnotes, a bibliography and an index. At less than 300 pages, the book is small, but jam packed with tons of useful advice and examples for the person who wants to create truly magical ritual form.

July 4, 2007

Magickal Connections by Lisa McSherry

Filed under: Book Reviews — magickware @ 11:38 am

Magickal Connections: Creating a Lasting and Healthy Spiritual Group
I have found that once a novice witch has settled into the Pagan path, the next thing they look for is community. Many a new witchling yearns for a coven to call home. Many try and start one on their own, thinking that all they have to do is show up and –whala- instant coven. Sadly, most of these fledgling covens never make it past 6 months when the real world work of running a religious organization becomes apparent.

Ms. McSherry has succinctly taken her own experience as a coven leader and put it in an accessible and wonderfully complete book. This book covers all the essentials to forming, running, maintaining and even dissolving a coven. The author’s voice is pleasant and informative, making the material in this book easy to read and understand. Many books of this nature tend to be on the dry side, but Ms. McSherry has an upbeat manner, which includes spells and rituals designed to further the coven’s aims and purpose. Pitfalls and things to be aware of in forming and running a coven are briefly touched upon and explained. Solutions and alternative examples are provided for many situations that can arise.

The only drawback to this book that I can see is that the work is aimed to the cyber-world coven. Little is said of the real life duties of a High Priest or Priestess in regards to counseling or midnight phone calls for help. As a former roommate to a coven’s High Priestess, I can tell you, her duties never ended. There was many a time when she was called away to help a covener with only a moment’s notice. Aside from this, I found the book to cover most aspects of running a spiritual group.

The book also has several appendices taken from JaguarMoon, the author’s own coven. They are the various application forms sent out to prospective coveners to weed out the less serious applicants. They are an excellent jumping off place to coming up with your own requirements for membership in your own coven.

I would recommend this book to anyone considering forming a coven, whether online or in the real world. There are many things brought to a reader’s attention to consider before taking the leap into a leadership role.

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