Hoodoo in the Psalms is a grimoire with a brief intro to the origins of conjure. I felt that the author could have done more to explain what led her as an initiated witch to write a book based on words in the Bible. Conjure practitioners must be very comfortable with the idea of calling on the Biblical God for assistance. With the exception of some who practice western esoteric magic, most witches don't use Biblical sources in their spellwork. Hoodoo has always been an amalgamation of the knowledge of the people living it, breathing it, believing it. So although it may seem a little odd at first glance to see a witch setting her pen to the psalms, I think the crossroads of hoodoo is a large enough space to allow it. Just be advised that these workings are not the most traditional.

Taryn S's personal stories of working in an occult shop in the Bible Belt give the idea that she often encountered clients who hadn't put in the needed study or effort to learn any form of magic. Perhaps this book is an attempt to meet these folk where they're at. She gives an introduction to hoodoo early in the book and while the gist of it is generally true I question the veracity of some of the author's statements in an historical or academic sense. Take what she says as her viewpoint and do your own research. For the most part, this is a guide book to spellwork, not an historical or religious treatise.

No matter your personal path, you are likely looking to find new and useful ways to do workings. The book is organized into chapters that are self-explanatory and the reader just needs to look through the table of contents to find the topic of interest. The spells are not complicated and there is a certain repetition in steps from one working to the next which is useful to those being newly introduced to this process.

These spells are easy to follow magickal recipes for life's little and big problems. This will be most enjoyed by those who already feel called to psalms and are comfortable with using Christian language. Taren S has a different take on how to use the psalms than most rootworkers. If you look at traditional hoodoo uses for a Bible verse, you will see that is not how she is using the verses in her workings. Since it is not very traditional, it's best for people looking for new inspiration.

~review by Larissa Carlson

Author: Taren S
Publisher: Moon Books, 2020
pp. 232, $14.99