Quite by accident, I stumbled upon an excellent book, so I’m breaking blog silence to review it.
Have You Been Hexed? Recognizing and Breaking Curses, by Alexandra Chauran is absolutely superb. In truth, I was wondering if I should write a book on the subject, so my editor suggested I read this one first. It’s probably better than what I would have written.
Most people approach hexes/curses in one of two ways: Either, there’s no such thing (or, as a variation, there’s no such thing unless your imagination is allowing it), or HOLY SHIT IT’S EVERYWHERE. Chauron, by contrast, is neither alarmist nor dismissive.
The author covers just about everything you’d hope such a book would cover, such as:
- You’re probably not under a hex, but you might be
- Here’s how to tell
- What else might be wrong if it’s not a hex
- And what to do about that
- Cultural factors in hexes/curses
- How to detect a charlatan who is selling “hex removal”
- And what to do about that.
It’s all written in a clear, educational, lucid, and very sane style. The author clearly understands Wicca, magic, and related subjects, but asks no such background of the reader. She’s experienced both with people who think they are cursed but are not, and the real—if rare—thing. It’s a short book that can function as a how-to guide to a fraught situation.
Do I agree with 100% of the book? Of course not—no two people agree on everything. My only real complaint is that she references and uses Isaac Bonewits’ “Laws of Magic” often, but does not include him in her bibliography. This is an editing error, though, not a writing error, and doesn’t detract from the book.