Wednesday, December 30, 2015

The Most Interesting Pagan Books Ever (an informal survey)


The end of a year brings about a lot of lists. The most important famous-for-doing-nothing people of 2015. The best cupcakes in the neighborhood. The 15 worst fights of Black Friday madness.

Many Pagan blogs like to put out their annual lists as well, and I was very tempted to do something similar. My favorite pagan moments? Best spells cast of 2015? Wildest Social Media Rants by Fire Lyte?! But, no. I decided instead to let you, the Rioter community, put together this year's list with one little rule: Give me the most interesting book on your Pagan book shelf.

Many people were confused.



See, I have found that if you ask someone what the "best" or "favorite" Pagan book is, you get a pretty shallow group of names. The same 5-10 authors pop up in these lists, depending on whether the creator of said list leans more heavily on intro books by major publishers or more esoteric books and indie publishers. The term "interesting", however, got people thinking.

And...gosh...you all really put some effort into this list. There are familiar names like Margot Adler and Judika Illes (whose name has been giving my computer's autocorrect an absolute panic attack). There are former Riot guests like Signe Pike. Friends of the Riot like Peter Paddon and Phaedra Bonewits. And...then...there were a dozen or more authors whose names I'd never heard before.

So, this is a list that isn't counting down to anything. There is no ranking here. This is just a giant list of the books YOU, the most fabulous folks on the Pagan interwebs, put together.

If you don't see your favorite, please list it in the comments below! And also comment if you found a new favorite for your own collection.

Oh, one last thing. If any of the titles or author's names are misspelled, please feel free to correct me. Given the size of the list, I didn't have time to check each and every submission.

Blessed 2015 Rioters!

Love and Lyte,

Fire Lyte


  • A Deed Without A Name - Lee Morgan
  • Celtic Lore & Spellcraft of the Dark Goddess: Invoking the Morrigan - Stephanie Woodfield
  • Celtic Myth and Magic - Edain McCoy
  • The Underworld Initiation - R.J. Stewart
  • Scott Cunningham's entire body of work
  • Magical Housekeeping - Tess Whitehurst
  • Real Magic - Isaac Bonewits
  • Staubs & Ditchwater: a Friendly & Useful Introduction to Hillfolk's Hoodoo - H. Byron Ballard 
  • Post Modern Magic - Patrick Dunn
  • Beneath the Skins - Ivo Dominguez
  • Earthlight - R.J. Stewart
  • The Art of Shen Ku - Zeek
  • A Grimoire for Modern Cunning Folk - Peter Paddon
  • The Black Books of Elverum - translation of Norway Grimoire
  • Witchcraft Medicine - multiple German authors
  • The Book of the Great Queen - Morpheus Ravenna
  • Magic of the North Gate - Josephine McCarthy
  • Supermarket Magic
  • Ecstasies: Deciphering the Witches Sabbat - Ginsberg
  • Ritual Offerings - Nephilim Press
  • The Catalpa Bowl
  • The Wicca Handbook - Eileen Holland
  • Long Lost Friend - ? (A book about cow magic)
  • National Galleries of Scotland's Witches & Wicked Bodies
  • The Appearance of Witchcraft - Charles Zika
  • A Gentle Guide to Magick
  • The Elements of Ritual - Deborah Lipp
  • Faery Tale - Signe Pike
  • The Book of Sacred Stones: Fact and Fallacy in the Crystal World - Barbara G. Walker
  • Woman's Encyclopedia of Myths and Secrets - Barbara G. Walker
  • Mastering Witchcraft - Paul Huson
  • Tarot Symbolism - Robert V. O'Neill
  • Tarot Revelations - Richard Roberts & Joseph Campbell
  • Magical Ritual Methods - William G. Gray
  • Helping Yourself with White Witchcraft - Al G. Manning
  • Visceral Magick - Peter Paddon
  • Drawing Down the Moon - Margot Adler
  • Buckland's Complete Book of Witchcraft - Raymond Buckland (i.e. Uncle Bucky's Big Blue Book)
  • Golden Bough - Frazer
  • Real Energy - Phaedra & Isaac Bonewits
  • The Element Encyclopedia of Witchcraft - Judika Illes
  • Healing Mantras - Thomas-Ashley Farand
  • A World Full of Gods: An Inquiry Into Polytheism - John Michael Greer
  • The works of Nigel A. Jackson
  • The works of Robin Artisson
  • The works of Emma Wilby
  • The works of Owen Davies
  • The works of Mike Howard
  • White Magic - Paddy Slade
  • The works of Draja Mickaharic
  • The works of Claude Lecouteux
  • The works of Gemma Gary
  • Cecil Williamson’s Book of Witchcraft - Steve Patterson
  • The Eldritch World - Nigel Pennick
  • The Enchanted Candle - Lady Rhea
  • The Discoverie of Witchcraft - Reginald Scott
  • Cunning Folk and Familiar Spirits - Emma Wilby



11 comments:

  1. Dying at how you put my suggestion of Long Lost Friend hahahahahaha

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  2. Treading the Mill and Walking the Tides, both by Nigel G Pearson

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  3. Treading the Mill and Walking the Tides, both by Nigel G Pearson

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  4. Great list! I love seeing RJ Stewart included here. I can't believe how many Pagans and Witches have not heard of him. He is a living treasure.

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  5. The book i call my bible is the Doning International Encyclopedic Psychic Dictionary. It leads me to many other books. However i can cheat and not use a book at all and just go straight to my friend Phaedra Bonewits and ask her!

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  6. The Catalpa Bow, rather than bowl

    Pow-Wows, or Long Lost Friend, by John George Hoffman

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  7. It's me! How exciting.

    I'm glad to see my suggestion "The Elements of Ritual" by Deborah Lipp here. It really is my favorite Craft related book.

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  8. Brighid's Healing: Ireland's Celtic Medicine Traditions by Gina McGarry
    I've been doing a lot of herbal projects, be they magical, medicinal, or cosmetic. I have also been looking into Celtic witchcraft. This book combines the magical properties of common and not so common herbs with their practical every-day uses.

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  9. Someone mentioned it above, but I wanted to add the name of the author of The Catalpa Bow, Carmen Blacker.

    Also, I'm in the middle of reading A Witch's Book of Silence by Karina BlackHeart and it's a very good read so far.

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  10. Amber Kaine Fisher, "The Philosophy Of Witchcraft".

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  11. Patricia Telesco "A Victorian Grimoire". Very crafty ideas.

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