The Book Report by Rebecca Traver - Our Online Bookshop Curator

Welcome to the Book Report! With the Spring Equinox / Ostara coming up, I thought I’d begin this report with a selection of books from our Wheel of the Year list. Also included in this report is a selection of New + Newly Discovered titles; a special group of Books for Young and Young at Heart Readers; and a couple of Just Because + Just for Fun offerings. 

“In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.”
~Margaret Atwood

Welcome to the Book Report! With the Spring Equinox / Ostara coming up, I thought I’d begin this report with a selection of books from our Wheel of the Year list. From my little patch of Earth on the California coast, the signs of Spring are all around me. The daffodils have bloomed, the birds are busy gathering nest-making supplies, the mountains have greened up, the weather has warmed enough to put jackets back in the winter-wear closet, and the air is beyond fresh and fragrant with jasmine. I hope that, wherever you are, you are feeling as joyful as I am. 

Also included in this report is a selection of New + Newly Discovered titles; a special group of Books for Young and Young at Heart Readers; and a couple of Just Because + Just for Fun offerings. 

I hope you enjoy what you find here and know that, as always, 
I am honored by the privilege of taking up space in your inbox.

“It is spring again. The earth is like a child that knows poems by heart.”
~Rainer Maria Rilke

The Wheel of the Year: Annual Cycles of Celebration + Wisdom

Season Songs: Rediscovering the Magic in the Cycles of Nature by Emma Kathryn is a beautiful ode to a nature-centered magical practice which shows how to meaningfully navigate the land where you live and create embodied relationships with its spirits and seasons.

The Natural Home Wheel of the Year: Crafting, Cooking, Decorating & Magic for Every Sabbat from Raechel Henderson takes you throughout the year, featuring sections on practical activities, inspiration for your seasonal altar,s journal prompts, food recipes, decoration ideas, and more. 

Maia Toll's Wild Wisdom Companion: A Guided Journey into the Mystical Rhythms of the Natural World, Season by Season guides readers in developing a personalized earth-based spiritual practice using rituals, writing prompts, recipes, symbols, and reflections tied to each season. Included is a set of truly beautiful 28 pop-out oracle cards illustrated by Kate O’Hara to enhance the invitation for readers to use this interactive guide as an ongoing tool for cultivating the sacred in their own lives.

Meagan's Ostara by Paul Ellis is a children’s picture book about two faiths coming together to celebrate as one. You will learn about the Pagan concept of Ostara as well as the more traditional meanings of Easter. Inside the book, find fun activities to do with the kids in your life.

Ostara: Rituals, Recipes & Lore for the Spring Equinox by Kerri Connor is a guide to the history and modern celebrations of Ostara / the Spring Equinox, showing how to perform ceremonies and work magic to renew your power and passion for living and growing. I love being able to include a Spanish language edition from the publisher as well.

Year of the Witch: Connecting with Nature's Seasons Through Intuitive Magick from Temperance Alden will help readers create their own intuitive practices in harmony with the climate, culture, and local spirits wherever they live.

The Great Work: Self-Knowledge and Healing Through the Wheel of the Year by Tiffany Lazic blends ancient Western spirituality, energy work, and psychology to offer a practical guide to personal transformation season by season. Find guidance through daily journal questions, elemental meditations, and the author’s unique energy healing technique of Hynni.

The Ostara Tarot from Molly Applejohn, Eden Cooke, Krista Gibbard, and Julia Iredale offers a lovely synergy of artistic styles and perspectives as you delve into the fantastical world of traditional symbolism and contemporary themes that will reunite you with the wilderness and explore the sacred feminine.

For the entire list, click here!

When we’re ready for something to really have the space to heal, that’s when actually allowing the emotions to rise is important.
~Alexandra Roxo

New + Newly Discovered

Dare to Feel: The Transformational Path of the Heart by Alexandra Roxo is a strong offer to explore the practice of passionate living and deep feeling as a spiritual path of opening the heart as you reclaim your full self, expanding in ways you haven’t known before. As the author observes, “Most of us weren’t taught how to feel or take bold risks for love and life – in fact, we were taught not to feel, to hide, and to remain on the sidelines of life, playing it safe.” She goes on to say, “The more we try to control or retreat from deep feeling, the more we shrink away from life and love and the passion and ecstasy possible being human.”

Worthy: How to Believe You Are Enough and Transform Your Life from Jamie Kern Lima asks the powerful question, what has self-doubt already cost you in your life? Imagine how the quality of your life could expand if you FULLY believed in YOU! The author writes, “In life, you don’t soar to the level of your hopes and dreams, you stay stuck at the level of your self-worth. In your business, leadership, relationships, friendships, and ambitions, you don’t rise to what you believe is possible, you fall to what you believe you’re worthy of. When you build your self-worth, you change your entire life. WORTHY teaches you how. I wrote WORTHY for YOU if you have some self-doubt to destroy and a destiny to fulfill!”

Unwinding Anxiety: New Science Shows How to Break the Cycles of Worry and Fear to Heal Your Mind by Dr. Judson Brewer offers a step-by-step plan clinically proven to break the cycle of worry and fear that drives anxiety and addictive habits. Dr. Brewer teaches us to map our brains to discover our triggers, diffuse them with the simple but powerful practice of curiosity, and to train our brains using mindfulness and other practices that his lab has proven can work. I don’t know about you, but I could use some of that!

Languishing: How to Feel Alive Again in a World That Wears Us Down from Corey Keyes is for you if you’re muddling through the day in a fog, if you feel emotionally flattened, or you lack the energy to socialize of feel joy in the small things…in other words, if you feel you are languishing more than living. Ultimately, Keyes presents a counterintuitive approach to breaking the cycles keeping us stuck and finding a path to true flourishing.

The Art of You: The Essential Guidebook for Reclaiming Your Creativity by James McCrae takes the point of view that no matter what you may call yourself, you are an artist whether you realize it or not. You are creating your life in each passing moment. The question is, are you creating with conscious intention or not? This book is a powerful resource to help you access your magic and spark your joy! Yes, please!!

The Complete Notes from the Universe by Mike Dooley is a collection of empowering and positive affirmations to remind us that we have inherent power over our lives and a say in our destiny. In order to bring about change, we must simply ask and show up. The author’s insights can help you harness the metaphysical laws of the Universe so that you can be swept off your feet and carried along, as divine intelligence puts the right people in your path at just the right time.

Open: Living with an Expansive Mind in a Distracted World by Nate Klemp shares a powerful new approach for living in a distracted and divided world with greater engagement, freedom, and openness. There are so many ways our modern world prompts us to shut down our minds and hearts. But what if there’s a better way? “When we open to life,” says Klemp, “we’re no longer stuck in here fighting against our thoughts on the inside or a crazed world on the outside. We’re connected. Our minds and lives get bigger. There’s more room, more perspective, more possibility. This is what it means to be free.”

Seeking Dragons: Connecting to Dragon Energy & Magick by Virginia Chandler presents a cross-cultural exploration of the draconic archetypes as they have appeared across the millennia as gods, monsters, and mentors. Sharing visualizations, oil and incense recipes for honoring celestial and elemental dragons, Chandler helps you forge close bonds with these mysterious creatures as essential spiritual companions. If your heart has longed to work with dragons, then open this book and let the adventure begin!

Ethereal Visions Tarot: Luna Edition from Matt Hughes draws its inspiration from the Art Nouveau movement, adopting its distinctive style and meticulous approach to craftsmanship. Every detailed image in the deck is hand drawn and in color and is illuminated with iridescent silver foil stamping. This is one gorgeous deck, kids!

The Sufi Tarot by Ayeda Husain is a first of its kind, East-meets-West deck and guidebook offering tools for self-reflection, healing, and transformation; merging traditional tarot archetypes with ancient Sufi practices.

The Rooted Woman Oracle by Sharon Blackie with illustrations from Hannah Willow is a magical oracle that entwines three different threads: Places, Allies, and Journey. From the inspirational ‘Mountain’ to the flowing ‘River’, you’ll experience the archetypal qualities of specific places and take spiritual strength from the land. You’ll feel supported by women from Celtic myth and folklore – your Allies – like initiatory Ceridwen and The Cailleach, protector of the wild; and you’ll find Journey cards that reflect different stages of the Heroine’s Journey and help you follow your own mythopoetic path through life.

The Vital Spark: Reclaim Your Outlaw Energies and Find Your Feminine Fire from renowned Jungian analyst Lisa Marchiano shares a call to action for women who dream of reuniting with their brilliant, creative, and fiercely independent nature. Marchiano invites us on an immersive journey to reclaim any split-off parts of ourselves that enliven and rejuvenate us – allowing us to become our most full and vibrant selves. 

Supercommunicators: How to Unlock the Secret Language of Connection by Charles Duhigg teaches that communication is a superpower, and the best communicators understand that whenever we speak, we’re actually participating in one of three conversations: practical (What’s this really about?), emotional (How do we feel?), and social (Who are we?). If you don’t know what kind of conversation you’re having, you’re unlikely to connect. In the end, the author delivers a simple but powerful lesson: With the right tools, we can learn to connect with anyone.

Where I Belong: Healing Trauma and Embracing Asian American Identity by Soo Jin Lee, LMFT and Linda Yoon, LCSW shows us how the cycle of trauma can play out in our relationships, placing Asian American experiences front and center to help process and heal from racial and intergenerational trauma.

Louise Hay's Affirmations for Self-Esteem: A 12-Card Deck for Loving Yourself is comprised of 12 affirmation cards to help you build and maintain self-esteem. As Hay reminds us, “It doesn’t matter what other people say or do. What matters is what I choose to believe about myself.” Originally published in 2003, this newly repackaged card deck is designed to assist you in knowing you’re perfect, whole, and complete – just as you are.

In Becoming Gandhi: My Experiment Living the Mahatma's 6 Moral Truths in Immoral Times, veteran journalist and author Perry Garfinkle sets out on a three-year quest to examine how Gandhi’s ideals have held up in a world beset by troubling trends. “As I saw myself and society moving further away from a moral point of view,” Garfinkle writes, “I wanted to see if an ordinary person living in the 21st century could, like Gandhi, follow a morally driven game plan.”

When I despair, I remember that all through history the way of truth and love have always won. There have been tyrants and murderers, and for a time, they can seem invincible, but in the end, they always fall. Think of it – always.”
~Mahatma Gandhi
For more New + Newly Discovered books click here!

Books for Young Readers + the People Who Love Them

Love is My Favorite Color by Nina Laden, illustrated by Melissa Castrillon, is one of my favorite picture books of this season. It’s a bright and tender celebration of all things radiant and loving in the world. And who isn’t hungry for more of that?

Like So from Ruth Forman with charming illustrations by Raissa Figueroa is a lyrical and vibrant book honoring the love and bond that exists between a family and its children even in complicated times.

The Last Stand by Antwan Eady, illustrated by Jerome and Jarrett Pumphrey, is a sweet intergenerational story about a farm stand in the rural south that represents the importance of family, community, and hope. Heartwarming illustrations compliment the story beautifully, revealing a family’s pride in their work, and reminding us to harvest love and hope from those around us.

The strong female-empowering trilogy of young adult books from Namina Forna, beginning with The Gilded Ones, introduces us to sixteen-year-old Deka who lives in fear and anticipation of the ceremony that will determine whether or not she will become a member of her village. Already different from everyone else because of her powerful intuition, Deka prays that she will pass the test so that she can finally feel that she belongs. The story continues with the second book  The Merciless Ones and concludes with a dazzling finale in The Eternal Ones where Deka discovers…you wouldn’t want me to spoil the fun by revealing the story’s conclusion, would you? Trust me, you’ll want to be a part of this tale all on your own.

For more books for young readers click here!
Para libros para lectores jóvenes en Español haga clic aqui!

Just Because + Just for Fun

Be Kind Panoramic Puzzle from Galison puzzles with artwork by Sarah Walsh comes from a collaboration with the Born This Way foundation that focuses on the message of being kind. Included is a 21 Days of Kindness Calendar that you can fill in with you own kindness prompts. I love this one & think you will, too.

So You Want to Be a Game Master: Everything You Need to Start Your Tabletop Adventure for Dungeons and Dragons, Pathfinder, and Other Systems by Justin Alexander is perfect for the roleplaying people in your world - providing the keys to unlocking endless adventures.

Please visit our online Bookshop to see our full selection of lists and titles.
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