Reading Guide


A Reading Guide for the Curious and Dabbling Witch

I receive messages regularly from those looking for resources on the topics of witchcraft, magic, myth and folklore, ancestral connection, animism, earth-cased spirituality, spellwork, history, feminism, faith transition, Christianity and colonization, and Mormonism, and their infinite intersections. Instead of creating a small list for each individual who requests one, I have compiled all my best resources in one easy-to-navigate place.

I've organized these resources alphabetically by topic for ease of locating sources on desired topics. Some of the resources are explicitly "witchy;" others include cookbooks, books on handicrafts, and other embodied practices and resources so that exploration and connection can be accomplished in a variety of ways outside of pure intellectual research. I've also recently added a few fiction/novels (marked with *), as these are valuable resources in understanding the past and creating future spiritual frameworks.

Each topic is organized by section: Top Titles, Other Valuables, and occasionally Somewhat Problematic. Top Titles contains the books that I feel are must-reads in each category - prioritize these! Other Valuables includes books that have been helpful but did not earn a place among Top Titles. Finally, Somewhat Problematic contains titles that I have read but either do not recommend or recommend with caution, with reasons provided for each.

Also included in each section is an "On My List" section. This includes books that I have marked to read in the near future. I don't want to hold resources back that may be helpful to you simply because I haven't read them yet. 

This list is 7+ years in the making. I've read my way through hundreds of books on any of these topics and have compiled those I believe are most helpful and informative here. While this is not a comprehensive list, it is growing. I continue to add to it as I come across valuable and stunning reads, and update the list here at least once yearly.

This list will always be free so that everyone can access it no matter their financial situation. For those of you who appreciate resources for free or cheap books, I offer the following (non-affiliated) options for your consideration:
  • FREE: Your local library: Depending on where you live, your library may have some of these titles in stock either as a physical book or an electronic copy. Additionally, many public libraries partner with larger book databases that may increase the availability and accessibility for some of these titles. 
  • FREE: Many pagan or witchy shops have a small community-funded lending library you can borrow from. 
  • Affordable: Scribd App: Scribd is an app with which members may borrow popular titles from leading publishers for a small monthly fee (as of October 2022, the membership fee is $10). While their claim that an "unlimited" number of titles can be borrowed is misleading (its really closer to 15-20), this is an especially valuable resource if you are in research mode and move through books quickly.
  • Affordable: Buy used books, especially more obscure or out-of-print titles, for a very affordable rate. They sell new books as well, and each purchase earns points toward free book rewards. Every order over $10 ships for free. 
  • If you're looking for a title to keepsake or gift, make sure to purchase from your local bookseller or pagan shop!
If you'd like to support my research or send a quick "thanks!" you can send over any amount to my Venmo (@ChanningBParker) to cover my next chai or newest title to review! 

Happy reading, witches!
Channing (@channingbparker on Instagram)


  • You Were Born For This: Astrology for Radical Self-Acceptance by Chani Nicolas

Ancestral Connection

  • Root & Ritual: Timeless Ways to Connect to Land, Lineage, Community, and the Self by Becca Piastrelli
Death & Grief
  • The Smell of Rain on Dust: Grief and Praise by Martin Prechtel
  • When Women Were Birds: 54 Variations on Voice by Terry Tempest Williams
  • It Didn't Start With You: How Inherited Family Trauma Shapes Who We Are and How to End the Cycle by Mark Wolynn
  • The Deepest Well: Healing the Long-Term Effects of Childhood Adversity by Nadine Burke Harris
  • Honoring Your Ancestors: A Guide to Ancestral Veneration by Mallorie Vaudoise
On My List:
  • My Grandmother's Hands: Racialized Trauma and the Pathway to Mending Our Hearts and Bodies by Resmaa Menakem, MSW
  • Communing with the Ancestors: Your Spirit Guides, Bloodline Allies, and the Cycle of Reincarnation by Raven Grimassi

Celtic Ancestral & Spiritual Practices

Top Titles:
  • The Mist-Filled Path: Celtic Wisdom for Exiles, Wanderers, and Seekers by Frank MacEowen
  • An Carow Gwyn: Sorcery and the Ancient Faerie Faith by Artisson & Trainham
  • Celtic Folklore Cooking by Joanne Asala
Other Valuables:
  • Llewellyn's Sabbat Essentials series
  • The Book of Hedge Druidry: A Complete Guide for the Solitary Seeker by Joanna Van Der Hoeven
On My List: 
  • Celtic Women's Spirituality: Accessing the Cauldron of Life by Edain McCoy
  • By Oak, Ash, and Thorn: Modern Celtic Shamanism by D.J. Conway
  • Scottish Witchcraft: A Complete Guide to Authentic Folklore, Spells, and Magickal Tools by Free & Hutton
  • Water Witchcraft: Magi and Lore from the Celtic Tradition by Annwyn Avalon
  • Wild Magic: Celtic Folk Traditions for the Solitary Practioner by Danu Forest
  • Horns of Honor: Regaining the Spirit of the Pagan Horned God by Fredrick Thomas Elworthy
  • Yearning for the Wind: Celtic Reflections on Nature and the Soul by Tom Cowan

Celtic Mythology & Lore

Top Titles: 
  • If Women Rose Rooted: Reclaiming the Power of the Celtic Woman by Sharon Blackie
  • Myths and Legends of the Celtic Race by Thomas William Rolleston (FREE on Project Gutenberg)
Other Valuables:
  • Celtic Tales: Fairy Tales and Stories of Enchantment from Ireland, Scotland, Brittany, and Wales by Kate Forrester
  • Rhiannon: Celtic Queen of the Celtic Britons by Jhenah Telyndru
  • Foxfire, Wolfskin: and Other Stories of Shapeshifting Women by Sharon Blackie
  • Celtic Lore & Spellcraft of the Dark Goddess: Invoking the Morrigan by Stephanie Woodfield
On My List: 
  • Celtic Myth & Magick: Harness the Power of the Gods and Godesses by Edain McCoy
  • Boudica: The Life of Britain's Legendary Warrior Queen by Vanessa Collingridge

Celtic Tree Lore & Ogham

Top Titles: 

  • Whispers from the Woods: The Lore and Magic of Trees by Sandra Kynes
Other Valuables:
  • Celtic Tree Rituals: Ceremonies for the Thirteen Moon Months and a Day by Sharlyn Hidalgo
On My List:
  • Celtic Tree Magic: Ogham Lore and Druid Mysteries by Danu Forest


  • Crystal Healing for Women: A Modern Guide to the Power of Crystals by Mariah K. Lyons
  • Crystals by Jennie Harding (a fantastic reference book and great for crystal identification!)

Deck Recommendations:

  • Woodland Wardens by Jessica Roux
  • Hedgewitch Botanical Oracle by Siolo Thompson
  • The Prairie Majesty Oracle by Kara Simons
  • The Witch's Familiar Runic Oracle
  • The Whispering Spirits Tarot by Joanna Nelson
  • Tarot for Kids by Reed & Whitman
  • The White Numen Tarot by Alba

Empaths, Highly Sensitive People, and Psychics

Top Titles:
  • The Highly Sensitive Person: How to Thrive When the World Overwhelms You by Elaine N. Aron, PhD
  • The Highly Intuitive Child: A Guide to Understanding and Parenting Unusually Sensitive and Empathic Children by Catherine Crawford
  • Psychic Witch: A Metaphysical Guide to Meditation, Magick, and Manifestation by Mat Auryn
  • The Natural Psychic: Ellen Dugan's Guide to the Psychic Realm by Ellen Dugan
  • Discover you Psychic Type: Developing and Using Your Natural Intuition by Sherrie Dillard
Other Valuables:
  • The Witch of Portobello by Paulo Coehlo
  • Highly Intuitive People: 7 Right-Brain Traits to Change the Lives of Intuitive-Sensitive People by Heidi Sawyer
  • Radical Intuition: A Revolutionary Guide to Using Your Inner Power by Kim Chestney

Feminism at the Intersection of Witchcraft, Paganism, and Nature Worship

Top Titles:
  • Jailbreaking the Goddess: A Radical Revisioning of Feminist Spirituality by Lasara Firefox
  • Witches, Sluts, Feminists: Conjuring the Sex Positive by Kristin J. Sollee
Other Valuables:
  • Witch: Unleashed, Untamed, Unapologetic by Lisa Lister
  • Ecofeminism and the Sacred by Carol J. Adams, editor (specifically: A Femininst Philisophical Perspective on Ecofeminist Spiritualities by Karen J. Warren; Ecofeminist Consciousness and the Transforming Power of Symbols by L. Teal Willoughby; and Toward an Ecofeminist Ethic of Shamanism and the Sacred by Gloria F. Orenstein)

Feminist Psychology

Top Titles:
  • Women Who Run With the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype by Clarissa Pinkola Estes
  • The Pregnant Virgin: A Process of Psychological Transformation by Marion Woodman
  • The Birth of Pleasure: A New Map of Love by Carol Gilligan
  • Mother Night by Clarissa Pinkola Estes (audiobook)
Other Valuables: 
  • Eating in the Light of the Moon: How Women Can Transform Their Relationships with Food Through Myths, Metaphors, and Storytelling by Anita Johnston

General Witchcraft & Paganism

  • Book of Shadows: A Modern Woman's Journey into the Wisdom of Witchcraft and the Magic of the Goddess by Phyllis Curott
  • Seasons of a Magical Life: A Pagan Path of Living by H. Byron Ballard
  • The Witch's Path: Advancing Your Craft at Every Level by Thorn Mooney
  • The Goddess is in the Details: Wisdom for the Everyday Witch by Deborah Blake
  • The Magickal Family: Pagan Living in Harmony with Nature by Monica Crosson
  • True Magic: Unleashing Your Inner Witch by Cyndi Brannen
  • Curative Magic: A Witch's Guide to Self Discover, Care, & Healing by Rachel Patterson
  • Practicing the Presence of the Goddess: Everyday Rituals to Transform Your World by Barbara Ardinger
  • For Small Creatures Such as We: Rituals for Finding Meaning in Our Unlikely World by Sasha Sagan
On My List:
  • Paganism: An Introduction to Earth-Centered Religions by Joyce Higginbotham
  • Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other Pagans in America by Margot Adler
  • Woman Most Wild: Three Keys to Liberating the Witch Within by Danielle Dulsky
  • Witch, Please: Magical Musings on Life, Love, and Owning Your Power by Sonia Lazo
  • Ancient Ways: Reclaiming the Pagan Tradition by Pauline Campbell
  • Wild Witch: A Guide to Earth Magic by Marian Green
  • Hedge Witch: A Guide to Solitary Witchcraft by Rae Beth

Goddess Worship History and Theory (non-Christian)

Top Titles:
  • Lost Goddesses of Early Greece: A Collection of Pre-Hellenic Myths by Charlene Spretnak
  • The Beginnings of Patriarchy in Europe: Reflections on the Kurgan Theory of Marija Gimbutas by Joan Marler (essay, can read for FREE online)
On My List:
  • Aspecting the Goddess: Drawing Down the Divine Feminine by Jane Meredith
  • The Circle of Nine: An Archetypal Journey to Awaken the Divine Feminine Within by Cherry Gilchrist
  • Goddesses in Myth, History, and Culture by Mary Anne Beavis
  • Goddess in the Grass: Serpentine Mythology and the Great Goddess by Linda Foubister
  • The Alphabet Versus the Goddess: The Conflict Between Words and Image by Leonard Shlain

Hearth & Home Witchcraft

Top Titles:
  • The House Witch: Your Complete Guide to Creating a Magical Space with Rituals and Spells for Hearth and Home by Arin Murphy-Hiscock
  • The Hearth Witch's Compendium: Magical and Natural Living for Every Day by Anna Franklin
  • Sacred Space: Clearing and Enhancing the Energy of Your Home by Denise Linn
Other Valuables:
  • HausMagick: Transform Your Home with Witchcraft by Erica Feldman
  • Everyday Witchcraft: Making Time for Spirit in a Too-Busy World by Deborah Blake
  • Cottage Witchery: Natural Magick for Hearth and Home by Ellen Dugan
On My List:
  • Kitchen Witch: Food, Folklore, and Fairy Tale by Sarah Robinson
  • Kitchen Witchery: Unlocking the Magick in Everyday Ingredients by Laurel Woodward
  • The Scent of Lemon and Rosemary: Working Domestic Magick with Hestia by Raechel Henderson

Hedge Riding & Journeying (not including Norse seidr)

Top Titles:
  • The Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-Than-Human World by David Abram
  • Fire In the Head: Shamanism and the Celtic Spirit by Tom Cowan
  • To Fly By Night: An Anthology of Hedgewitchery by Veronica Cummer
Other Valuables:
  • Hedge Witch: Spells, Crafts, and Rituals for Natural Magick by Silver RavenWolf
  • Shamanic Journeying: A Beginner's Guide, Walking In Light: The Everyday Path of a Shamanic Life by Sandra Ingerman
  • The Art of Celtic Seership: How to Divine from Nature and the Otherworld by Caitlin Matthews
On My List:
  • By Land, Sky, and Sea: Three Realms of Shamanic Witchcraft by Gede Parma
  • Hedge-Rider: Witches and the Underworld by Eric De Vries
  • Awakening to the Spirit World: The Shamanic Path of Direct Revelation by Sandra Ingerman
  • Shamanic Gardening: Timeless Techniques for the Modern Student by Melinda Joy Miller
  • The Spell of the Sensuous: Perception and Language in a More-Than-Human World by David Abram

History of Witchcraft, Persecution, and Oppression

Top Titles:
  • Caliban and the Witch: Women, the Body, and Primitive Accumulation by Silvia Federici (can find for FREE with a Google Search)
  • Witches: A Century of Murder (Netflix Series)
Other Valuables:
  • Malleus Maleficarum, Heinrich Kramer, 1486
On My List:
  • The Tribe of Witches: The Religion of the Dobunni and Hwicce by Stephen James Yeates
  • A History of Witchcraft: Sorcerers, Heretics, and Pagans by Jeffrey Burton Russell
  • The Witch: A History of Fear, From Ancient Times to the Present by Ronald Hutton
  • The Witches' Ointment: The Secret History of Psychedelic Magic by Thomas Hatsis

Menstrual Magic

  • Period Power: Harness Your Hormones and Get Your Cycle Working for You by Maisie Hill
  • WomanCode: Perfect Your Cycle, Amplify Your Fertility, Supercharge Your Sex Drive, and Become a Power Source by Alisa Vitti
  • The Wild Genie: The Healing Power of Menstruation by Alexandra Pope
  • Code Red: Know Your Flow, Unlock Your Monthly Superpowers, and Create a Bloody Amazing Life, Period by Lisa Lister

Moon Magic

  • Moon Magic: Your Complete Guide to Harnessing the Mystical Energy of the Moon by Diane Ahlquist
  • Moon Energy: A Practical Guide to Using Lunar Cycles to Unleash Your Inner Goddess by Stephanie Lefranque

Nature Awareness, Connection, and Advocacy

Top Titles:
  • The Wander Society by Keri Smith
  • Braiding Sweetgrass: Indigenous Wisdom, Scientific Knowledge, and Teachings of Plants by Robin Wall Kimmerer
  • An Unspoken Hunger by Terry Tempest Williams
Other Valuables:
  • Speaking with Nature: Awakening to the Deep Wisdom of the Earth by Sandra Ingerman and Llyn Roberts
  • Rewild Yourself: Making Nature More Visible in Our Lives by Simon Barnes
  • The Other Side of the River by Lila Carrico

Norse Ancestral and Spiritual Practices

Top Titles:
  • The Road to Hel: A Study of the Conception of the Dead in Old Norse Literature by Hilda R. Ellis (Free in the public domain)
  • The Norse Shaman: Ancient Spiritual Practices of the Northern Tradition by Evelyn C. Rysdyk
Other Valuables:
  • The Way of Fire and Ice: The Living Tradition of Norse Paganism by Ryan Smith
Somewhat Problematic:
  • A Modern Guide to Heathenry: Lore, Celebrations, and Mysteries of the Northern Tradition by Galina Krasskova
    • Krasskova does not support Declaration 127, which is an anti-racist policy in the Asatru community. The mythology portion of this title is a helpful framework for understanding the myths, but everything else should be taken with suspicion.
  • Trolldom: Spells and Magick of the Norse Folk Magic Tradition by Johannes Gardback
    • Comprehensive resource with folk practices of the Nordic areas, and an interesting example of the intersection of Norse Paganism with Christianity, but somewhat frustrating to read for those experiencing deconstructing from Christianity.

Norse Myth

Top Titles:
  • Prose Edda, Penguin Classics Edition
  • Poetic Edda, translated by Carolyn Larrington
  • Gods and Myths of Northern Europe by H.R. Ellis Davidson (FREE in the public domain)
  • Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman
  • The Norse Myths by Kevin Crossley-Holland
  • Across the Rainbow Bridge by Kevin Crossley-Holland
Other Valuables:
  • Norse Goddess Magic: Trancework, Mythology, and Ritual by Alice Karlsdottir
  • *The Witch's Heart by Genevieve Gornichec
  • Loki and Sigyn: Lessons on Chaos, Laughter, & Loyalty from the Norse Gods by Lea Svendsen
On My List: 

Norse Runes

Top Resources:
  • Wild Soul Runes: Reawakening the Ancestral Feminine by Lara Veleda Vesta
  • Runic Book of Days: A Guide to Living the Annual Cycle of Rune Magick by Harrell & Pennick
Other Valuables: 
  • Runes for Transformation: Using Ancient Symbols to Change Your Life by Kaedrich Olsen
  • The Runes Box: Tools to Connect You to the Magic of the Universe by Lona Eversden
  • Taking Up the Runes: A Complete Guide to Using Runes in Spells, Rituals, Divination, and Magic by Diana L. Paxson
  • Lost Teachings of the Runes: Northern Mysteries and the Wheel of Life by Ingrid Kincaid
  • The Seed of Yggdrasil by Maria Kvilhaug
Somewhat Problematic:
  • Rune Reading Your Life: A Toolkit for Insight, Intuition, and Clarity by Delanea Davis
    • This book does an excellent job fostering a connection with the runes for divination purposes, but as a guide or reference, it is frustrating to read as it doesn't follow the same organizational patterns of most runic resources.
  • Living Runes: Theory and Practice of Norse Divination by Galina Krasskova
    • Besides the problematic lack of support for Declaration 127 (mentioned above), Krasskova takes a more extreme approach to the practicing of runes that reads as elitist and acts somewhat of a deterrent to practicing with the runes. Many of the author's views do not align with a common-sense practice, and I do not recommend this resource for anyone who is working with anxiety or OCD, especially scrupulosity. 
  • Futhark: A Handbook of Rune Magic by Edred Thorsson (and any other titles by the same author
    • Thorsson is well-known in the community for not consistently presenting accurate data and practices. Use your intuition and common sense when reading.
On My List:
  • Pagan Magic of the Northern Tradition: Customs, Rites, and Ceremonies by Nigel Pennick
  • Well of Remembrance: Rediscovering the Earth Wisdom Myths from Northern Europe by Ralph Metzner

Plant Craft

Top Titles:
  • The Green Witch: Your Complete Guide to the Natural Magic of Herbs, Flowers, Essential Oils, and More by Arin Murphy-Hiscock
  • Entering Hekate's Garden: The Magick, Medicine, and Mystery of Plant Spirit Witchcraft by Cyndi Brannen
  • Nature Spirituality from the Ground Up: Connect with Totems in Your Ecosystem by Lupa
  • The Secret Teachings of Plants by Stephen Buhner
Other Valuables:
  • The Handmade Apothecary: Healing Herbal Remedies by Chown & Walker
  • The Bloom Book: A Flower Essential Guide to Cosmic Balance by Heidi Smith
  • The Real Witch's Garden: Spells, Herbs, Plants, and Magical Spaces Outdoors by Kate West
  • Plant Magic for the Beginner Witch by Ally Sands
  • Alchemy of Herbs: Transform Everyday Ingredients into Food & Remedies That Heal by Rosalee DeLa Foret
On my List:
  • Folk Magic and Healing: An Unusual History of Everyday Plants by Fez Inkwright
  • Wild Witch: A Guide to Earth Magic by Marian Green
  • Plant Magic: Herbalism in Real Life by Christine Buckley
  • Gathering Moss: A Natural and Cultural History of Mosses by Robin Wall Kimmerer
  • Rooted: Life at the Crossroads of Science, Nature, and Spirit by Lyanda Lynn Haupt
  • The Green Witch's Garden: Your Complete Guide to Creating and Cultivating a Magical Garden Space by Arin Murphy-Hiscock

Queer Witchcraft

  • Casting a Queer Circle: Nonbinary Witchcraft by Thista Minai
On My List:
  • Queer Magic: Power Beyond Boundaries by Independent Publishers Group
  • Queering Your Craft: Witchcraft from the Margins by Cassandra Snow
  • Queer Magic: LGBT+ Spirituality and Culture from Around the World by Tomas Prower

Scandinavian Culture

Cooking & Baking
  • Modern Scandinavian Baking: A Cookbook of Sweet Treats and Savory Bites by Daytona Strong
  • Scandinavian Comfort Food: Embracing the Art of Hygge by Hahnemann & Leth
  • Scandinavian Gatherings: From Afternoon Fika to Midsummer Feast: 70 Simple Recipes & Crafts for Everyday Celebrations by Melissa Bahen
  • Fire & Ice: Classic Nordic Cooking by Darra Goldstein
  • Scandilicious Baking by Signe Johansen
  • Bakeland: Nordic Treats Inspired by Nature by Marit Hovland
  • Scandinavian Needlecraft: 35 Step-by-Step Hand Sewing Projects by Clare Youngs
  • Scandinavian Gatherings: From Afternoon Fika to Midsummer Feast: 70 Simple Recipes & Crafts for Everyday Celebrations by Melissa Bahen
  • Lagom: Not Too Little, Not Too Much: The Swedish Art of Living a Balanced, Happy Life by Nikki Brantmark
  • The Little Book of Lykke: Secrets of the World's Happiest People by Meik Wiking

Shadow Work

  • Of Blood and Bones: Working with Shadow Magick & The Dark Moon by Frueler & Auryn
  • Existential Kink: Unmask Your Shadow and Embrace Your Power by Carolyn Elliot
  • Owning Your Own Shadow: Understanding the Dark Side of the Psyche by Robert A. Johnson
On My List:
  • Shadow Work and Sacred Space by John DiMino

Witchcraft, Feminism, and Paganism at the Intersection of Christianity and Mormonism

Top Titles:
  • The Red Tent by Anita Diamant*
  • The Dance of the Dissident Daughter: A Woman's Journey from Christian Tradition to the Sacred Feminine by Sue Monk Kidd
  • Gaia & God: An Ecofeminist Theology of Earth Healing by Rosemary Radford Ruether
  • A Gift Given, A Gift Taken: Washing, Anointing, and Blessing the Sick Among Mormon Women: A Mormon Historian Tracks Changes in the Practice by Linda King Newell
Other Valuables:
  • Early Mormonism and the Magical World View by D. Michael Quinn
  • Feminist Theology: A Reader by Ann Loades
  • You Are Your Own: A Reckoning with the Religious Trauma of Evangelical Christianity by Jamie Lee Finch
  • Mary Magdalene Revealed: The First Apostle, Her Feminist Gospel, and the Christianity We Haven't Tried Yet by Meggan Watterson
  • The Way of the Rose: The Radical Path of the Divine Feminine Hidden in the Rosary by Strand & Finn
Last Updated: October 2022
© Channing B. Parker. Design by FCD.