Samhain

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Title: Llewellyn’s Sabbat Essentials, Samhain

Category: Nonfiction, New Age, Wicca, Witchcraft, Sabbats

Review: So the reason I got this book is because Samhain or Halloween, is my favorite Sabbat of the year. Has been since I was a little girl, though I didn’t know it was a Sabbat back then. Anyway, this book is a great resource for anyone who wants to learn about Samhain. It gives a great history on it; where it began, what it is called in other countries, traditions, etc… It also gives great recipes and divination techniques. Cause as you may or may not know, the veil between worlds is the thinnest at this time of the year. Also, the book has a great array of invocations, rituals, and celebrations. Samhain is not a Sabbat of death entirely, it is one of change. It has spells to focus on ourselves as well as to communicate with our long gone ancestors. I loved this book and am looking forward to incorporating some of what I have read into my practices on Samhain. I hope you get this for your personal library. It was excellently written and definitely a great book for someone who wants more knowledge on this Sabbat.

Rating: *****

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You: On A Diet

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Title: You, On A Diet by Michael Roizen and Mehmet Oz

Category: Nonfiction, Health, Weight Loss

Review: First, I just wanted to say that I have read this book before. I just wanted to reread it again. I love reading anything written by these two guys. This isn’t another weight loss book. Yes, they want you to get serious about weight loss, but they take a sort of comedic approach at it as well. They put in these funny diagrams to make it more clearer for you. So you’re not looking at the book and being bored, but you also understand what they are trying to explain. The first part of the book is mostly spent explaining the effects of being overweight and the digestive system and other different things that they think are important to tell us before starting their diet. Then the second part focuses on a simple plan where they lay out exercise and a diet. They have a lot of different recipes and the exercise plan is not that bad. I think everyone should at least read it. Just for the knowledge that these two bring to the table and the way it is written. I think you will like it if you are trying to lose weight.

Rating: *****

Operation Paperclip

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Title: Operation Paperclip, The Secret Intelligence Program That Brought Nazi Scientists To America by Annie Jacobsen

Category: Nonfiction, History, World War II, Post-War World II, Cold War, Science, Government

Review: From the start, I think this was a very interesting read. When we think about Germany and War World II, we typically think about Hitler and his generals. We don’t think about the men behind all the evil in the concentration camps or working to create the rockets. This book starts at the end of the war and tells us how Operation Paperclip began. It basically was a rouse to use the intelligence of many of the Nazi doctors and scientists and bring them back to the United States. They were in competition, because after the end of WW II, the Soviets basically cut off ties with us and became our enemies. What this book tells us about is how the program started and why it started. They found gas, rockets, etc… that they needed to bring back to the U.S. and they needed the Germans to help them. So even though the German doctors or scientists were Nazis they could get a free pass to a certain extent. There were challenges, as the book discusses, and the program does come to an end due to the fact that the information does end up becoming declassified. The book reveals information that I had not even known before about experiments on people during that time. Such as freezing experiments and saltwater experiments. It is an enlightening book. Even though some of the the German scientists and doctors did some good over here in the U.S. they still were Nazis. It still makes you ask, ‘was it worth a free pass?’ If you are interested in the War World II period, definitely take a look at this book.

Rating: *****

Faeries and Elementals for Beginners

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Title: Faeries and Elementals For Beginners by Alexandra Chauran

Category: Nonfiction, New Age

Review: I ordered this during the Father’s Day special on the Llewellyn website. I have been wanting to learn more about faeries in general. I think this is a very good book for the beginner. It starts with a basic dictionary of faeries and things like etiquette. The book then progresses on to teach you to communicate with the different kinds of faeries. There are four chapters, one devoted to each elemental which gives different types of rituals and a type of meditation that will help you get started working with the elemental. I feel that the author wrote this book very well and for a beginner in mind. She warns of the dangers and blessings of having faeries and elementals as friends or foes. You have to be careful because these are not creatures to control. She gives various examples of what could happen if you try to control them. I find this book very helpful for a beginner and look forward to using it to make my own friends with the faeries. Definitely find a copy and read it.

Rating: *****

You: Staying Young

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Title: You, Staying Young by Mehmet Oz and Michael Roizen

Category: Nonfiction, Health

Review: I actually had read this book before and just found it and decided to read it again. This is a very well-written book. I feel that you can just connect instantly with these two guys. The book is written to make you feel comfortable. There’s no big, huge words and if there are, they are explained. There are humorous images and explanations and it’s done all very well. The authors take you through the body and have little tests at the beginning of each chapter to see if everything is up to par. At the end of the book is a plan to help yourself get back on track to ‘staying young.’ I loved it. I am looking forward to using the tips and techniques in the book for my everyday life. This is a book that should be look at before we reach our 50s. Check it out.

Rating: *****

Undaunted Courage

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Title: Undaunted Courage by Stephen Ambrose

Category: Nonfiction, Lewis and Clark Expedition

Review: First, I would like to say that Stephen Ambrose was one of the best authors ever. That is why his works still are sold and read. They are captivating and informative and you can never get bored reading them. This was the first time I read anything from him that was not in the WWII era and to be honest, I was completely bored. It took me two months to finish and I just couldn’t get into it. Now, I’m not saying the book is bad, hardly. He did excellent research and he started with the very beginning: who Meriwether Lewis was. He then went on to explain how the expedition got started. I was very impressed in how he created a view through Lewis and Clark’s eyes when meeting the different types of Indians, the pain of the weather, the excitement, etc… However, being a WWII type of girl, I just couldn’t get into it that quick. I was trying to experiment with a new type of era and it just didn’t work for me. Now if you are a fan of this type of era, I recommend it wholeheartedly. Stephen Ambrose never disappoints.

Rating: ***

Kitchen Table Tarot

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Title: Kitchen Table Tarot by Melissa Cynova

Category: Nonfiction, New Age, Divination, Tarot

Review: From the moment I opened this book I was entranced by the author. Melissa Cynova, aka Lis, really takes you into the world of tarot and is an honest and down-to-earth writer. She tells you stories about how she became a reader and how she has made mistakes. The one thing that I warn you about is that she is rough. There are a lot of curse words. So if you can’t handle that, then don’t buy this book. I really didn’t care about it. I found as if I was talking to a friend who was giving me straight up advice. She talks about the cards a little differently than other books. Normally, regular tarot books will give you keywords about a certain card like: wealth, financial stability, etc. She takes you through the cards individually and looks through each of their eyes, then gives you what they represent. I enjoyed this book immensely. It has made me pick up my tarot cards again and start practicing. Definitely take a look at this book if you are wanting to get into tarot reading, for yourself or others. I felt it was a worthwhile buy.

Rating: *****