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Bookviews Book Reviews




The Witches Familiar –
Spiritual Partnerships for Successful Magic
by Raven Grimassi





Raven Grimassi explores the Witches Familiar; how the familiar has been viewed in the past both in myth and history.   He then gives instruction in what familiars are, how to work with them and use them. 

Mr. Grimassi presents us with his perception of the three types of Familiars:  the physical kind, the astral kind and the spiritual kind.  He teaches you how to find your familiar and even how to find a name for that familiar. 

He then shows how to use your familiar in your craft, how to bind your familiar, how to control and command your familiar and how to eventually release the familiar. 

The book contains sigals and rituals for the binding and spell working aspects of having a familiar.  Mr. Grimassi discusses the various types of spell working you can use with a familiar.  He also discusses bonding with your familiar. 

The table of contents is quite in depth and makes up for the skimpy index.  There are four appendixes on keyword associations, classic familiars, names of familiars (which includes Pyewackett, how predictable), and the Witches Alphabet.  The book also has a bibliography. 

While the book may reflect what may have once been considered the role of the familiar in the craft, I personally believe the role of the familiar has evolved beyond ‘step and fetch it’ that this book presents.  Today’s craft person keeps their physical familiars as companions rather than tools, and as Mr. Grimassi even points out at one point, today we see the role of the familiars we have as more cooperative guardians and guides than something that we need to bind and command.  Some of us do not see a need to bind something that has come to us freely and is just as free to leave once the lesson is learned. 

I think this book is an overkill of myth, old magic and some very elaborate designs and devices that are not really necessary in today’s craft.  I think Mr. Grimassi is stretching here to present a relationship as elaborate and complex, when most of us know and enjoy a relationship that is very simple and elegant without the need of all the trappings Mr. Grimassi wants us to go through.   

Sometimes things are so simple, and yet there is always someone who wants us to believe it is so complex and involved.

Reviewed by Boudica