For today’s post, I am happy to state that I will be doing another review of a book kindly sent to me by Crossed Crow Books. This one is slightly different from the other titles, in that this one is technically a fictional novel!
The Black Book of Johnathan Knotbristle by Chris Allaun is a story of the titular Johnathan as he navigates a new world of life as a witch. The character lives in the American South in the nineteenth century. This gives him a unique point of view as a Christian who is also a witch in a day and age that would have him persecuted for his magical ability. This is only a couple hundred years post-Salem Witch Trials after all!
The novel is broken into several chapters, each of which reveals a real-life magical practice at its core. This is much in line with the way the iconic Dion Fortune used novels like The Sea Priestess to serve as guides for magical practitioners in a time that would have them persecuted for their practices. I loved that this novel was at its core centered on real practices of Folk Magic. Folk Magic is a form of traditional witchcraft that relies on old-world accounts of how magic was performed by people centuries ago. We do have plenty of documentation as to how our ancestors used magic in their lives, and that is what a Folk practitioner is going to base practice on.
I found this book an excellent and fast read for those that are interested in old folk practices. I would also recommend this to people who like a good historical novel rooted in magical history. I hope that you have enjoyed this brief review. Will you be reading this one? Do you like occult-based fiction? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!
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- The Black Book of Johnathan Knotbristle by Chris Allaun