cover image Luminary: A Magical Guide to Self-Care

Luminary: A Magical Guide to Self-Care

Kate Scelsa. Simon & Schuster, $18.99 (368p) ISBN 978-1-66590-234-2

In a welcoming volume on self-care approached via practical and magical means—including tarot, astrology, witchcraft, and mindfulness practices—Scelsa (Improbable Magic for Cynical Witches) lends guidance for bettering one’s mental health by sharing her own experiences and interviewing experts in their respective fields. An introductory chapter presents the concept of “old-school new age” tools and remedies meant to aid in a more holistic understanding of one’s own psyche. Scelsa shares that, at 15, she learned that the “tons of water” in her natal chart contributes to her emotional nature, a realization that transitions this internalized “flaw” to, instead, a “part of me that needed extra attention.” In subsequent chapters, the author outlines specific tools, giving an overview of the practice and its utility alongside insight from expert practitioners: chapter two (“Astrology”) features Jeff Hinshaw, a soul-centered astrologist and tarot user. Little time is spent exploring the cultural history and significance of each ritual, but Scelsa sensitively emphasizes inclusion and curating affirming spaces for audiences across myriad identities. It’s a useful starting point for those looking for a wider awareness of the possibilities of magic and magical thinking—one that encourages self-understanding, self-confidence, curiosity, and compassion. Ages 12–up. Agent: Brianne Johnson, HG Literary. (Nov.)