2005 Witches’ Almanac by Elizabeth Pepper © 2005

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    2005 Witches’ Almanac  by  Elizabeth Pepper   © 2005  Witches’ Almanac Ltd.  ISBN 1-881098-31-1   Paperback   112 pages             $8.95  (U.S.)

    The Witches’ Almanac has been a source of inspiration and knowledge for a long time.  Although there was a hiatus of several years, I have copies dating back almost thirty years.

    This year’s edition is much the same as the ones I have from the early days in that it contains planting information, pithy (if sometimes obscure) comments on the calendar pages, and lots of information scattered throughout.  There are news items (somewhat dated, it is true, but that is not unusual in an annual publication), book reviews, and an entire section devoted to each of the astrological signs.

    Unfortunately, if people were relying on the weather forecasts they would be severely disappointed as, for September, they said:  “Fewer than normal storms [hurricanes] will be named with only one reaching the criteria for a major hurricane.  This will not make landfall.”  Ooops – can you say Hurricane Katrina?  That is one disadvantage to attempting forecasting of anything in print.  Sometimes the results can be clearly seen to be opposite of what was predicted.

    There is a page dedicated to giving a basic, keyword, understanding of the components of an astrological chart, as well as one page to eclipses and planetary retrogrades.  These explanatory pages will help beginners to get a start on making sense of it all.

    Two full pages are devoted to predictions for each sign of the zodiac covering a general overview and then offering specifics in the fields of health, love, and spirituality, and finance.  Of course such predictions are necessarily general in nature, as they are based solely on the sun sign.  They should be seen as general indicators, nothing more.  The reader is reminded that for a fuller understanding of the year ahead the forecasts for your Moon sign and ascendant should also be consulted.  While this won’t produce a personalized forecast, it will help to refine the predictions.

    Stories and lore have been gathered from around the world and cover topics both familiar (“The Emperor’s New Clothes” by Hans Christian Anderson) to those less well-known (“The Fox in Old Japan” from Glimpses of Unfamiliar Japan (1894) by Lafcadio Hearn).  There is an abundance of material on a hug variety of topics and there should be, literally, something for everyone.

    There are few simple rituals given, and poetry is to be found there as well.

    For those people who have a “problem” with Llewellyn products, this is a good choice for an almanac for the upcoming year.  It is a quality product, with a long history and is well worth the cost.


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