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Book Review: Witchcraft for Beginners by Mari Silva

cover of Mari Silva's Witchcraft for beginners emblazoned with various astrological and pagan symbols
cover of Witchcraft for Beginners by Mari Silva

I know I complain a lot about everything being for beginners for someone who keeps getting books with Beginner in the title. Ditto Wicca…

So what happened was this – I got myself a cheap used kindle as I hate reading things on the computer, my phone doesn’t have enough free memory, my nook isn’t always reliable, and I accidently bought the healing garden in amazon format and you can’t reformat for other readers so yay me. I did a glance through the kindle books, as you do, and this one popped up. I believe it’s 2.99 normally.

I wasn’t expecting much, to be perfectly honest. And I was very pleasantly surprised.

If you are leaning toward celtic traditions, this is actually a pretty solid bit of information. Yes, it does lean toward Wicca but it’s not JUST wicca. There is some excellent history, pretty decent profiles of particular dieties, a pretty good explanation of the wheel of the year in historical context, and a really amazing bibliography.

As far as beginner primers go, if you lean to the Celtic traditions, you’d be hard pressed to find a more comprehensive book. There are even brief explanations of some of the symbols you see a lot but don’t always get explained a lot. As someone who was doing their initial research before they had access to the internet (and the internet was a lot less comprehensive then also) – that’s awesome. There were even some pretty informal ritual ideas. I appreciated that – as someone who really is awful at the pageantry part of witchery, simple feels lovely.

Do I agree with everything in it? Of course not. I’ve yet to meet a primer that I didn’t take some issue with. I really have issues with the “celtic tree calendar” astrology bit.

Was it a pretty solid starting point for anyone who might be interested – absolutely. This book goes on my recommend for new witches shelf.


3 responses to “Book Review: Witchcraft for Beginners by Mari Silva”

  1. That’s a great book.
    I have read several others from Mari Silva, all rich in valuable details.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m reading another one of hers at the moment – but that review will be a few weeks before it gets written up – I like to sit with books and let them marinate a bit before writing them up. I was cautioned by another witch that her book on asatru had some concerning possibly apologist stuff on the racism in the folkish spaces but I haven’t read that one.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I think that a practitioner or a lecturer should always be aware of all the possible implications of what s/he is using or writing.
        The topics are well explained, yet sometimes you have to read them in a “proper” context


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