Author: Dorothy Morrison
Trade Paperback, 198 pages
Publication date: September 2000
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Yule is one of my favorite holidays and Dorothy Morrison is one of my favorite writers, so I was looking forward to this book from the moment I heard about it. While is it not the practically perfect in all respects book I might wish for, it is a very worthy addition to my library.
Yule: A Celebration of Light & Warmth isn't a book for people who want to sit in their armchair and passively read and absorb knowledge. It's a book for people who want to do. The greater part of this book is Yule activities. You'll find chapters full of craft instructions: decorations for home and tree (over 30 projects), quick and easy handmade presents (over 20 projects), Yule party ideas, and Yule recipes (over 30 from around the world).
Some of the decorating projects include mistletoe balls, place mats, wreaths, herbal ornaments, and snow balls. Gift projects include pine cone fire starters, scented mug coasters, herbal tea baskets, potpourri lamps, amulet bags, and friendship eggs. Most of these projects use common, affordable materials and are designed to be child-friendly. As your artistically-challenged reviewer believes he could not only manage, but enjoy making, most of these projects, just about anyone able to read and follow directions should be able to as well. If you have school age children and want to stress the holiday season instead of the buying season, this book is wonderful.
The first part of Yule: A Celebration of Light & Warmth discusses the Yule season's history and symbols. Unfortunately, some of the information presented here seems as faulty as what I see in non-Pagan books on the holiday season. Given that almost every book on the subject states legends as fact, however, it's really hard to fault Yule for these problems. Besides, the information is fun and interesting even if there is more of legend than fact present in some sections.
Aside from such minor factual flaws, the only really serious problem is that the book ends. Yule: A Celebration of Light & Warmth is an easy to read and enjoyable book of Yule season activities and projects. This book a wonderful source of Pagan-oriented holiday activities for children young or old in any Pagan household. (The recipe for hot buttered rum isn't bad either.) If you enjoy this book as much as I do, you'll probably be hoping for a second volume for some future Yule season.
Reviewed by Randall
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