There is no way for me to write this review and not be sad. If you read my April 12th article “A Nice Guy and Some Special Ladies in my Life” then you already heard part of this story, but those who have not, here it is.
While flipping through a magazine I saw that a book called “The Small Town Pagan’s Survival Guide: How to Thrive in Any Community” was coming out in June 2011. Without having even read the book I knew this would be excellent subject matter for an interview, so I reached out to Llewellyn Publications and secured a review copy of the book and my foot in the door for an interview with the author Bronwen Forbes. Under 72 hours later I learned that she had passed away. Ultimately I was saddened that I had missed the opportunity to interview a woman who had touched so many lives. Then I received my copy of “The Small Town Pagan’s Survival Guide”.
This book gives us a glimpse at a woman who lived an extremely full life, and she shares it in intimate detail. From divorces to workplace harassment, to meeting the love of her life, raising a small child, and moving around the country, it is there on the page for all to read and learn from. Forbes’ writing is honest, often times humorous, and authoritative. Just her experiences alone would have made “The Small Town Pagan’s Survival Guide” a worthwhile book, but she didn’t stop there.
Not only did Forbes recount her own experiences and lessons learned from moving to small town in Missouri from the suburbs of Washington, DC, but she surveyed and interviewed roughly 50 other people who identified themselves as Pagans residing in small towns. The book is filled with direct quotes from the surveys as well as insights gained from examining the survey results as a whole.
I was surprised to realize that “The Small Town Pagan’s Survival Guide” contained information that was useful for Pagans in smaller towns, but also Pagans in cities. There’s information for Pagans looking to start discussion groups or considering forming a coven. It would even be helpful for someone who perhaps hasn’t fully decided if they’re Pagan or not. This book has information and reflections that just about any Pagan would be able to take something away from. I also think the book is a worthwhile read for folks like me who are not Pagan, but are always looking for a better understanding of Pagan spirituality and the people who practice it.
But I’ll always wonder about that interview…..
“The Small Town Pagan’s Survival Guide” releases in June 2011.
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