Just a few thoughts

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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Book Review: The Way of the Hedge Witch by Arin Murphy-Hiscock

This was my first book by Arin Murphy-Hiscock, to the best of my knowledge. While I didn't hate the book, I didn't love it, either. I think the title is misleading, but that might be a misconception on my part. From what I know of hedge witchery, though, this book doesn't really fit under that category. I don't even think the term was used more than a couple of times in the whole book, if at all.

Instead, Arin describes what she calls "hearth craft," which is (in my opinion) something like a cross between cottage witchery and something I'm not familiar with ("hearth craft" I suppose), with a hint of kitchen and green witchery thrown in.

This book places emphasis on the home being a sacred place innately, and how everything we do is spiritual. She talks about setting up a shrine/altar in the heart of the home to serve as the spiritual hearth, and drawing upon that energy for spell work and rituals. The rituals are very informal and simple (which I like, as that's how most of my rituals go), and she encourages looking to things you already have or can easily obtain for spells and rituals, as well as things for the altar.

What really made me not like this book is the way she kept repeating the same things over, and over, and over, and over again throughout the book. It was never anything huge, it was just the same general idea (about what "hearth craft" is and the like) being rephrased and repeated many times, usually at least once per chapter.

There are some ideas for rituals (things like home blessings and the like), crafts, recipes, etc., which I liked for the most part. All in all I wouldn't recommend buying this book, but if you can read it for free, I think it's alright. I have Amazon Prime, so I borrowed it on my Kindle for free. I almost bought it for myself before finding it in the Kindle library, because I got it for my friend last year for Yule and she seemed to really like it. Now, even though I could have gotten it really cheap, I'm glad I didn't spend the money on it because it isn't a book I would refer back to in the future, except possibly for recipes.

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