Ms. Lipp has long been a favorite Wiccan author -- her books are always excellent. She wisely says, "Spells and rituals aren't all there is to Wicca, but they're an important component" and The Complete Book of Spells is an excellent guide to start with.
Lipp sets the stage with a quick, but comprehensive review of the basics of the modern religion of Wicca. A bit of history, a basic list of supplies you'll want, how to prepare for ritual, and circle casting. She then takes the reader through the basics of being a witch: consecrating your magical tools, finding a God or Goddess to work with, and creating your working space. That chapter includes the first rituals, appropriately all focusing on creating, blessing, and honoring beginnings.
Chapters Three through Eight expand the repertoire of spells and offer a balanced, broad selection. Love, friendship, ending, healing, protection, courage, and abundance are all included. More than enough for most witches, and all presented in a concise, clear format that allows for personal additions and symbols. I particularly admired how easily she explained how to draw a "bind rune" and her inclusion of a polyamory spell (the first I've ever seen). Her chapter on endings is superb, and offered a variety of rituals for a phase most people overlook, or ignore in their life. "Endings open the way for the next beginning, after all, and death is what brings rebirth."
Chapter Nine offers celebrations of the seasons, and the earth, a perfect reminder that Wicca is, at its core, a nature religion. Here we have two esbats (full and new moon rituals) and one each for the eight sabbats. Lipp expands on this by offering three more: Blessing This Garden, Yard Gnome Magic, and a ritual to honor the spirits of the land where you live.
Throughout the book are lovely illustrations that inform and explain; the overall look and feel is lovely. (I wish I had a physical copy, but I'm a bit old-fashioned that way.) The list of references will provide further reading, and there is an excellent glossary of terms
This is an excellent book for newcomers to Wicca and witchcraft in general and it now lives at the top of my beginners reading list.
~review by Lisa Mc Sherry
Author: Deborah Lipp
Rockridge Press, 2020
pp. 188, $16.99
I received an advance copy of this book from the publisher in return for writing a review. All opinions are 100% my own.