By Mike Gleason
Faery Magick, by Sirona Knight
New Page Books, 1564145956, 209 pages (+ bibliography and index), 2003
My first quibble with this book has nothing to do with the subject matter, or the editing. It is with the typeface selected to print the book. I suppose it was chosen to provide a unique, otherworldly, look, but it is close enough to an italic face that I kept expecting to see a footnote indicated at the end of each paragraph. I even asked my daughter what she thought, and her first remark was that it looked like the entire text was italicized. I suppose it wouldn’t pose a problem for people with perfect vision, but for those with deteriorating sight, this might pose a problem. The illustrations and border designs are pretty and certainly add to the appearance of the book, but they do not overcome the shortfalls caused by the poor choice of typeface.
Statements such as: “Faeries like befriending mortals. They enjoy doing helpful things, and as long as you keep giving them gifts in return, the magickal relationship continues unimpeded,” are misunderstandings just waiting to happen. Certainly, there are faery folk who fit that description, but there are at least as many who do not. And leaving an inappropriate gift can cause a major insult.
This book contains basic lists of stones, metals, trees, animals, flowers and herbs, and provides their affinities to the faery folk. I found the lists interesting and helpful, especially for someone just beginning to work with faery energies. She also lists Faery Magick Tools. Although I don’t always agree with her choices, that is a matter of personal choice.
Her invocations of Guardians for the Magick Circle lend a very different feel from the “standard” Magick Circle. They are gentle and kindly in their feel. The standard Guardians provide a very solid sense of security, while the fse offer a more fluid feel.
Once again, a book from New Page suffers from poor editing. I suspect in this case, the work was passed by a spell checking program since the misspelled words are almost all homonyms (“passed” for “past”, etc.). I realize that there is an advantage to using technology in the mass production of books, but there really can’t be any substitute for a sharp-eyed editor physically reading over a manuscript after it is passed on by technology.
Ms. Knight shares faery tales with the reader. Some are well known to everyone, some are more obscure. All of them have unique twists which may have been forgotten over the years, but which serve to bring home the lesson Ms. Knight is attempting to pass along. There certainly are more extensive faery tale collections out there, but that is not the primary purpose of this work. This book is about working with faery energies. The stories chosen fulfil their purpose very nicely.
The Bibliography is fairly extensive, even if it s little heavily loaded with Ms. Knight’s own works. It offers some possibilities for learning about faeries.