The School for Psychics by K.C. Archer was part X-Men, part Ocean’s 11, and part Hogwarts for intuitives. The story follows Teddy, a young con artist who finds herself being recruited by the School for Psychics after her gambling luck comes under surveillance. From there the story takes place at the School where we meet a variety of characters each with their own psychic ability- one can set fires with his mind, another can communicate with animals, some receive premonitions and so forth. We uncover family secrets and a shady government organization who is using some of the recruits for ulterior purposes. There’s romance, espionage, mysterious disappearances, and good conspiracy theory with some dark overtones. I liked how this book focused on the psychic arts as I believe this is an untapped genre in fiction today considering most books center on witches, vampires, werewolves, etc. I wish the government and military were left out of the story as I felt it detracted from the fantasy and psychic elements of the plot. The first few chapters had me hooked, but I found myself struggling to finish the book. It was a little slow paced for my liking and there were too many characters that were included which was confusing at times. The twist at the end wasn’t satisfying because a character that was only briefly introduced to us at the beginning, ended up being the main culprit. There seems to be a sequel in the works and I probably would be interested in reading it as there are some mysteries that I would like to see solved. Overall I enjoyed this refreshing story-line and hope to see the intuitive genre gain some momentum.
What first drew me to this book was the element of folk magic and healing. As someone with a European background, I was interested to learn more. I am also familiar with Hexe Claire’s Youtube videos on Lenormand cards, so I knew her book would be informative.
Magical Healing includes chapters on when the best time is to heal according to the days of the week, which gods and goddesses to call upon, and how to protect yourself during the process and much more. I must say none of the above mentioned healing techniques are unique to German folk medicine. If you are well versed in Wicca or Paganism, then you will already have a very good grasp of these. I enjoyed the chapter on ‘Healing Techniques’ that were specific to folk healing such as blowing, spitting, egg applications, and so forth. The chapter that really got to the heart of folk healing was the chapter on spells and powerful words. When I think of folk medicine, I think of magic mixed with superstition and this is what was laid out in this chapter. There are spells on how to treat burns, spells for cold and fevers, disjointed bones, eczema, and so much more. These spells don’t require additional tools, just a strong belief that they will work. Hexe mentions throughout this chapter that she has recited these short little spells when she has injured herself, and miraculously healed as a result. The accomanying chapters provide information on healing herbs and stones, once again, nothing goundbreaking, although the chapter on stones looked at fossils as opposed to your typical crystals which was unique and refreshing.
Overall I was a little disappointed that there wasn’t as much folk magic included as I thought there was going to be, however, I think this was a safe first attempt that would not be intimidating or irresponsible for the readers to use.
The Twelve Faces of the Goddess by Danielle Blackwood is a deep journey into goddess archetypes. First Danielle explains the zodiacal archetype, and then goes on to explain what the modern day archetype looks like. Next, an exploration of the guiding goddess archetype is explored by using lesser known goddesses. For instance, how many people have heard of the goddess Macha? I know I never have. Next, how we can incorporate the lessons of the goddess are discussed by using very relatable examples. Guided meditations, rituals and correspondences of the zodiac and goddeses are also included.
What I most loved about this book was that Danielle was able to show very clearly how we can tap into our own inner goddesses for self empowerment. Too often in goddess studies there is a disconnect between the archetype and our modern day applications. This book does the exact opposite. It is made obvious that we all possess the twelve goddess archetypes within us, it’s just that we don’t always know how to activate them either because of patriarchal conditioning or because we have lost touch with ourselves. This book does a beautiful job of reminding us that we as women are multi faceted beings on our own unique journeys. Empowering the sacred feminine begins with honouring our authenticity and wide array of emotions. There are going to be times when we need to be the warrior Athena, and there are times when we will call upon Aphrodite. Goddess spirituality has less to do with invocation rituals and more to do with conscious awareness of our multi dimensional energies as women. The Twelves Faces of the Goddess are not some ancient mythological figures. They are within us.
This book is a must read for astrology lovers, women and men, priestesses, those new to goddess spirituality, and for those who are on a self-discovery journey.
The Little Book of Witchcraft by Astrid Carvel is a cute companion guide for the modern day witch. I say cute because it was written in a very easy to understand way, so it was in no means intimidating or complex. There were little skecthes throughout that made it seem like a notebook or grimoire, which was a nice touch. I appreciated the concise explanations of witchcraft, wicca, and white magic and the descriptions of altars, wands, crystals, etc. My only complaint is that there seemed to be an emphasis on the “modern day witch,” however, there was nothing uniquely modern about this since witches have been using things such as the four elements, candles, and salt for centuries. I wish there were more chapters devoted to actual modern day witchcraft which was only touched on, such as the use of social media, tech devices, and so forth. If the book contained more chapters pertaining to witchcraft in the twenty-first century, then this would be a stand out book. I do feel that the spells had a nice modern flair and seemed easy to perform, but the book needed more updated content. I also found the red and blue pages unreadable. There was not enough contrast between the font and coloured pages. I would recommend The Little Book of Witchcraft for those who are brand new to witchery as this book will help you ease into the craft. I would not recommend this book for those witches out there who are already well versed in witchcraft. Overall a cutesy read but lacking in the “modern” department.
The title says it all. Exploring the occult through popular culture and history. This is not the occult that we have come to understand, but rather occulture as in a post-modern movement. This is why I finished this book scratching my head. I was hoping for an exploration or uncovering of secret symbolism throughout popular culture, but instead received some lectures about the driving forces behind everything from Counter-Culture to Freud, from Dreams to the Media. These driving forces were explained from a philosophical and sociological angle, so I do feel a proper explanation of the “occult” was missing. Ironically, popular culture has distorted the occult to the point where we assume it is merely about magic and spells, but neglects to inform us of its psychological components- such as free will, cause and effect, intention, and individuation. This is where the author does a great job at exploring those components but neglects to actually explain what occulture actually is? Is it a corrupted esoteric lifestyle? Is it a desensitized trend? I would recommend placing the conclusion ‘Intuition as a State of Grace’ at the beginning of the book because it actually concisely summarized the contents of the book. This is a book I will read over and over again, hoping some of its content can actually sink in. If you would like to twist your brain and go on a mind bending journey through the underpinnings of society, this is a must read. I wouldn’t recommend this book if you are fairly new to exploring the occult, as your preconceived notions of it will surely be obliterated which you might find to be empowering or devastating.
This quirky books tell the story of one soul- Milo and his nearly 10 000 incarnations. Each chapter tells the story of a different incarnation and the strange experiences and characters he encounters- everything from being eaten alive by a shark, to travelling the cosmos. Milo is in love with Death herself- Suzie, who he meets after he dies and the short stints he spends with her before moving on to his next life. He encounters her in each of his incarnations, although he does not remember her. They are madly in love with each other, but it is their complicated relationship of her being Death and him almost finishing his incarnational cycle that they devise a plan in order for them to be together. The plan is for Milo to achieve Perfection- meaning he can surpass becoming part of the Oneness of the universe and can therefore be with his true love. We accompany Milo during his different soul experiences, sometimes laughing, sometimes relishing in the simple beauty of life, and sometimes grieving alongside him. As someone who has always been fascinated with the concept of reincarnation, I thought this book while appearing to be yet another mystical fiction read, turned out to be a much deeper metaphysical exploration of the human experience. Appreciating the fragility of life while living up to your soul’s contract is a delicate balance we are all hoping to achieve.
It is easy when reading this book to jump to conclusions and cringe when we see Milo making a mistake and smiling when he’s done good……if only life were that easy. In the beginning of the book Milo does not want to stop reincarnating as he tells Death and some other elusive cosmic characters that “who doesn’t want to live?” What becomes apparent, is that Milo truly wasn’t living, he didn’t treasure every single moment of his lives because somewhere deep down inside he knew he would be back for another turn again. I believe the whole concept of reincarnation comes with a massive responsibility- we all like the idea of being recycled when we die, but somehow, that can become a cop out and excuse for not living a full life. Perfection- the state Milo is so desperately trying to achieve is not something we strive for, it’s something we must become.
If you are interested in learning the metaphysical meaning of your name, then this book is must read! Traditional name meaning resources stick to historical and cultural meanings, while this book includes the spiritual essence behind your name. Our names are like magical words that carry vibrations and codes which determines the path of our life. The power and sounds of words are like spells which weave our destiny and purpose here on earth. Each vowel and sound carries power that enables us to awaken to our energetic patterns revealing secret information about our soul and essence. By learning the esoteric meaning of your name, this allows you to use your name as a talisman, spell, magical tool for enlightenment, expansion, and evolution. A great portion of the book focused on the history of magical and sacred naming practices, and also spent a great deal of time on sacred vowels. In ancient times, vowels were considered the most sacred as consonants cannot be discerned without vowels. The primary vowel sounds in your name- especially your first name tells you which elemental kingdom you have come to work with, and they can assist you in expressing your own creativity. Each vowel is linked to an element and combining this with your astrology is helpful and insightful. For example; I have a lot of water in my Astrology, but my primary vowels are Ether- so I have come to link the Ether with all 4 elements- bringing everything into balance.
There was a great discussion on the esoteric meanings of the letters themselves which was both unique and incredibly eye opening along with both the positive and negative traits of each vowel. The sound meanings of the vowels were also included along with the musicality of names. The best part of the book was the Metaphysical Dictionary of Names. Common names were included alphabetically and provided a page long analysis of the spiritual meaning. This was profound and enlightening. Looking at my own name, I could see just how accurate and eye opening it was for me. I highly recommend this book for anyone who would like to learn more about their name, who is thinking about changing their name, or is in the process of choosing a name for a baby. A remarkable read! And as the famous saying goes “know thyself.”