Thompson, Janet. Magical Hearth: Home for the Modern Pagan. (York Beach, Maine: Samuel Weiser, Inc., 1995) 133 pages; index.
ISBN: 0-87728-824-0.

A must-have book for the "kitchen" or "hearth" witch. A sort of pagan Alexandra Stoddard (Living a Beautiful Life), Thompson discusses, in tones of lyrical coziness, the significance of home and hearth to the pagan life, with suggestions and meditations for including all four Elements in homemaking and home life.

The book is focused around the kitchen, featuring instructions for creating mini-hearths, cookery suggestions, and herb and tea magic. Sections on plants, Fire, Air, Water, Earth, children and cats include mediations, spells, and reference material. Of special interest are her sections on herbs and crystals, and instructions for creating altars/hearths in each room of the house.

The information included in each section is not exhaustive, but covers each topic thoroughly. Having mastered the material in this work, the beginning hearthcrafter will be prepared to incorporate other resources into their work. In this volume is a complete, if simple, system of hearthcrafting, that can be used alone or in combination with other systems. Though Thompson's outlook is heavily Goddess oriented, this is useful for all pagans that honor the home and hearth. Highly recommended.

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© Jennifer A. Heise, September 30, 1996