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Home > Books & Reviews > Pagan > Real Witches' Year Search

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Book Review:
Real Witches' Year: Spells, Rituals And Meditations For Every Day Of The Year

Author: Kate West
Hardbound, 373 pages
Publisher: Thorson/Element
Publication date: 2004
List: US$19.95, C$23.95
ISBN: 0007189516
Price & More Info: Click Here


If you read my reviews of The Real Witches Coven, you know that Ms. West's use of the "Real Witches'" in her titles refers not to "the one, true and only way" to be a Witch but rather to being a Witch in the "real world" (you know, the one with neighbors, children, doctor's appointments, family obligations, etc., etc., etc.).

If you are used to standard date books (such as those produced by Llewellyn and others), you are in for a surprise. Each day has a page devoted to it. The only entries which are date-sensitive are the Sabbats. Other than those few dates the entries are useable whenever you wish to use them.

There are entries on stones, trees, animals, and a myriad of other topics. It is amazing the amount of information which is contained in this book. The range is extraordinary.

This is the kind of miscellany which deserves to sit on your bedside table. Each entry ends with a poignant thought. Read an entry before going to sleep and you may find stimulus for dreams. Read an entry upon awakening, and you may find stimulus for the day ahead.

The information is wide-ranging, even if it isn't exactly earth-shattering. Ms. West's style is that of a friend sharing her thoughts over a cuupa, which makes it easy to absorb. I am willing to bet that this will become one of those books which, in many cases, will become well-worn through constant use.

She provides some recipes, some gardening tips, some ideas for divination, and methods to sharper your psychic awareness and intuition.

I was cruising merrily along without and objections until I hit the entry on August 27 (page 240) on Runes. In that entry Ms. West writes "This image [Odin on Yggdrassil] can be found in the first card of the Major Arcana of the Tarot; the Hanged Man or Fool." I don't know which deck Ms. West is using (or if this was a simple mental slip), but in all the decks I own, the Hanged Man is neither the first card of the Major Arcana, nor is it interchangeable with The Fool - which is the first (or last) card.. These are two very different cards and two very different concepts, as I understand them.

Reviewed by Mike Gleason

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