Traditional Witchcraft and the Path to the Mysteries is the sixth book in a series by Melusine Draco, a fact that is both its strength, and its weakness.

Draco writes with confidence and her long experience with Traditional Witchcraft is apparent from the well-chosen analogies and memories she shares. This slim book is easy to read in a fairly short time, but will take a far longer time to truly work through the information she provides. There are exercises and meditations, as well as questions to answer for a deeper understanding of your self and your place within the natural world of witchcraft. Traditional Witchcraft and the Path to the Mysteries is written for the (fairly small) sug-group of witches in the British Old Craft lineage. I would say, however, that is applicable to witches of traditions as well. I am an eclectic Wiccan and found a great deal of use for myself.

It's not perfect, sadly. The book suffers from tangled organization and I had the nagging feeling that a strong editorial 'hand' (or redline!) would have improved the writing, as I often had to re-read whole pages to understand the point the author was trying to make.

My strongest criticism is that to really understand the material, one needs to have started with book one and read all the way through. Newcomers to this book will be lost and confused, and anyone just beginning to explore witchcraft will be hopelessly lost. Although this book is labeled as being the sixth, it does not tell the reader how dependent on the others in the series a true understanding will be. That's not on Draco, per se, but on her editor and/or marketing.
 
In the end, I recommend Traditional Witchcraft and the Path to the Mysteries for witches who have traveled quite a ways along the path of Craft and would be at, or past, their Second Degree (or its equivalent within their own Tradition). There is good information here, for those who have the prior training and experience to appreciate it.

~review by Lisa Mc Sherry

Author: Melusine Draco
Moon Books, 2015
pp. 150, $16.95

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