Where were you in 1971, the birth year of The Witches’ Almanac? For forty years this almanac, modeled after the Old Farmer’s Almanac, has given the Pagan community a wonderful collection of fun, wisdom, trivial and magical lore.
Each year the editors, Andrew Theitic, Barbara Stacy and Jean Marie Walsh, put together a varied collection of articles alongside the annual moon calendar information. The 2011 edition is no different, including one on Uzume, Goddess of holy hilarity; Orisha Oko, Divinity of the earth’s fruits, Celtic magic cauldrons and how Roman families bid farewell to their dead. I particularly enjoyed the articles Dia de los Muertos and A Magical Leap, 2012.
One criticism I have is that the theme for 2011-2012 is “Stones and the Powers of Earth” but there is a distinct lack of stone-based or related information. The closest we are given is a piece on celestial gems (a list of gemstones and their planet correspondents) and another on salt (A Dash of Salt). This does not detract from the overall value of the Almanac, but it is a bit disappointing.
Bound like a book, this is not a day planner but instead a reference guide for the year. For example, I note that on my birthday I need to “be aware of ghosts” on my partner’s, “plant flowers.” The Almanac includes information related to the annual Moon calendar (weather forecasts and horoscopes), as well as legends, rituals, herbal secrets, interviews, and spells. The illustrations are delightful, the quotes memorable, and the layout is clean and welcoming.
Absolutely recommended, this is a book that will provide value long after the calendar inside.
~review by Lisa Mc Sherry
The Witches’ Almanac, Ltd, 2010
pp. 152, 11.95