This astrological topic surfaces from time to time with cycles of interest. Victor Olliver, editor of The Astrological Journal (UK), delves into the methodology and explores the interpretive range of draconic charts.

Draconic charts are a mutation of a natal chart based on the position of the Moon’s Nodes at the time of birth. The entire set of chart points is shifted so the Nodes occupy the 0 Aries-Libra axis. Comparisons are made between the natal and draconic chart to identify life themes and soul purpose.

The first few chapters cover thoughts about the nature of soul and soul purpose along with basic how-to instructions on casting a draconic chart (most astrological software will erect a draconic chart). Chapter 3 summarizes steps for interpretation. Chapter 4 presents a three-step approach to analysis by using sample natal/draconic chart demonstrations. The charts employ the Equal House system. The natal chart is examined for basic qualities followed by an analysis of a stand-alone draconic chart. Then the two charts are combined into a biwheel for further evaluation and comparison. Sample charts include familiar and notable figures from the 19th and 20th century.

Chapter 5 provides methods for draconic forecasting with transits and solar returns. This is an unusual offering as draconic methodology tends to focus on the natal chart. This author and an author of an earlier book on the same subject, Pam Crane, both explored the possibilities of expanding the use of draconic methods into forecasting. Olliver explains that these supplementary draconic methods allow one to “explore[s] emotional and spiritual continuums set against surface life events.” (p 112) A series of sample charts highlighting recent events provides demonstrations of this method. Chapter 6 gives an overview of draconic synastry as a means for “understanding the effect that one life has on another.” (p 143) Two chart comparisons suffice to convey this type of analysis.

Chapter 7 wraps up the book with case studies from Olliver’s client files. This section shows the kinds of insights that draconic chart analysis can provide for a client. The clients’ feedback for chart interpretations is helpful and enlightening.

Chasing the Dragons is a useful text as it explicates a somewhat inaccessible specialized astrological technique and presents novel ideas about expanding draconic charts into the realms of forecasting. The author is clear and precise in descriptions, taking the reader step-by-step through an orderly approach to chart interpretation. Material is well-organized and the chart reproductions are clear and legible (always a plus). Recommended.

~review by Elizabeth Hazel

Author: Victor Olliver
The Wessex Astrologer, 2022
222 pages, $18.60 pb