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by Rachel Patterson
It's refreshing to see a book of this nature start with warnings about allergies and toxicity when working with herbs or essential oils. This is so often missed out! It's the first book of a series that looks very interesting for beginners.
The tone is like one of those teenage witchcraft books, but there is some good information and from more modern paths included that you don't often see in Wicca/Witchcraft books, like a very basic explanation of sigil magic.
There were a few things I would disagree with, like being very specific when doing a spell to get a job. If you target just one application, you don't leave room for other opportunities to pop up out of nowhere! And some of the correspondences didn't sit quite right, though these will always bring disagreement. The lists looked more like examples and weren't extensive.
Overall I found it light on instruction. Someone wanting to construct a formal spell will have to look elsewhere for details, but there are a lot of books on the market for that. The one worrying thing is that although how to banish something from your life was mentioned, there was nothing about banishing residual energies after doing a spell.
What it was strong on was folk magic spells. There were a lot of examples for how to apply these to various purposes and a lot of definitions for forms of magic, if only partial information on how to do them. There was also a lot of "use your intuition" and plugs for the author's other books, as well as a story told about a candle flame gone wrong that could have been avoided by using a proper candle holder. This surprised me after the good advice at the beginning about toxicity safety.
Overall I think it would make a good first book for someone who wants to dip their toe into magic and see how it sits without getting into too much trouble. I'd still like to have seen more detailed information about how to clear unwanted energies, just in case.