Lughnasadh: Rituals, Recipes & Lore for Lammas is the next book in the series from Llewellyn. As always, the books are physically small but pack an enormous amount of information inside the deceptively tiny form.

The Old Ways section for Lughnasadh seems to be a bit more robust than the previous few books in the series. There’s more history involved and it varies more deeply, it seems. The New Ways section gives us city and country beliefs practices as well as different paths, specifically in this one Celtic Reconstructionist, Wiccan, Heathen/Asatru, Modern Druid, Traditional Witchcraft, Neopagan, and Eclectic Witchcraft. It also gives us a listing of nearly a dozen Sabbat festivals for early August, then moves into suggested activities for the First or Grain Harvest.

Spells and Divination offers us a calming candle spell, an herbal success spell, a potato spell for luck and fortune, and a prosperity talisman. There is brief instruction in corn divination, predicting the weather, water scrying for success, and pendulum divination to foretell danger.

Recipes and Crafts gives us recipes for vegetable bean soup, corn on the cob, squash casserole, apple tart, bread, and apple cider. It teaches us how to make corn silk blessing wands, magickal berry ink, and corn dollies. There is also a section for decorating with apples, creating a gratitude altar, hanging sunbursts, and adding farm furnishings to your home.

Prayers and Invocations offer us a couple of prayers each to, appropriately, Lugh and Danu. It gives us meditations for gratitude and for reaping and sowing. There is a prayer for bread, a prayer for fertility of mind, body, and spirit, and it finishes up with a prayer to the nymphs for the protection of trees.
In the Rituals of Celebration section, there is a group ritual to honor the corn, a solitary ritual of a day in the life of the goddess, a couple’s ritual for a wedding feast, a mini ritual for bread and blessings. And ending the book comes eleven pages of Correspondences and nine pages of Bibliography.

I enjoy these books a great deal, but after reading them, while I do enjoy them the way there are, there are so many ways that I would love to see these books reorganized. I’d love to see all of the Old Ways and New Ways sections put together in one book. I’d love to see the Recipes and Crafts sections published as a cookbook and crafting manual. Prayers and Invocations would dovetail nicely with Rituals of Celebrations as its own grimoire of the Sabbats. But those are neither here nor there.

~review by Jeremy Bredeson

Author: Melanie Marquis
Llewellyn Books, 2015
210 pages

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