Creating 21st Century Esoteric Groups
Review by Daven
If you have ever wondered what thought processes went into creating the group you happen to be a member of, this is your book. In this one manual, Nick reveals a lot about how esoteric groups are created, how to handle them and what kinds of problems may plague such groups and how they die.
With topics like Group Leadership (focusing on the problems faced by the leadership and the problems of bad leadership) as well as practical things like a training program, I feel that this is a book that is all too often desperately needed. Until now Gathering the Magic, there was nothing to fill this void.
This is not just for esoteric groups. This is a book that will be immensely useful to anyone who has any kind of group. From the Saturday Morning Bridge Club to the Grand Lodge of Right and Immanent Alchemists and every organization in between, this book can give desperately needed hints and pointers.
That was the excellent, now for the not so good.
Because this book is from a publishing house in England, it is going to be very difficult to acquire here in the United States. Overseas shipping and exchange rates are probably going to put this book out of the reach of some people who would normally buy it. So the impulse sales probably aren’t going to be there too much.
The other thing that I had a real problem with is the cover artwork. Don’t get me wrong, I like line drawings, but in this case the art looks like it belongs more as an illustration in a Dragon Magazine or a fantasy game. It has a female and a male who are obviously casting magick at each other, with expressions of anger. The woman looks somewhat elfin to my eyes. This means that it looks as though it is a work of fiction or fantasy rather than a serious scholarly work on the life cycles of an esoteric groups.
Despite that, the contents of the book are, while not revolutionary, extremely well thought out and necessarily pointed out. I was happy to see something that can help those who want to create groups. Having a reference work that will help them that is up there with “The Virtual Pagan” and other works. It will be even better when this particular books crosses over the pond and is more common here.
For the review? Four and a half stars out of five. And it would have been higher except for the cover art and the lengths that will have to be gone to in order to secure a copy.
I still think that the use of this book more than makes up for the trouble acquiring it. I have JUST the place on my shelf for this work.
EDIT: 12-18-06 This is from the publisher in regards to one of my objections in this review:
Immanion Press/Megalithica Books has printers both in the U.S. and the U.K. That means that readers in both countries will have easy access and domestic shipping for all of our books. All titles are also available through all Amazon.com sites, again with standard shipping. We are also available through various pagan shops internationally; if your local shop doesn’t carry our books, have them contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information or visit http://www.immanion-press.com.