The Secret People is a tribute to the country folk of the days of old who lived somehow “apart” from other villagers – witches, wise-women, cunning men and even poachers. Aimed at modern-day witches and Pagans, this book collects together the wisdom of these “secret people” and presents it here for practical use.
There are already quite a few books out there like The Secret People, which feature old folklore taken from a variety of sources in one compilation. However, The Secret People is a particularly good example. It’s packed with all the information that a practitioner of folk magic could want: herb lore, healing remedies, animal lore, and agricultural lore. All of it is clearly and simply written, making this a very accessible book for beginners.
The Secret People additionally has a number of features that make it stand out from similar books on the market. Firstly, all the practical information is interspersed with some interesting historical points about the people from whom this knowledge was handed down. Secondly, its interpretation of poachers, while undeniably romanticised, is nevertheless very interesting, and even includes some tasty-sounding recipes for various game (vegetarians beware)! Additionally, The Secret People has a large section on the traditional church calendar featuring all the saints days celebrated in the British Isles; I do appreciate books on folklore aimed at the Pagan market that acknowledge the importance of Christian folk beliefs as well as the pre-Christian ones.
If you identify as a “Kitchen Witch” or are interested in folk magic and folk healing, or even simply finding eco-friendly solutions to daily life, I think you’re going to really like The Secret People. Compact and filled with practical information on a wide variety of subjects, I can imagine it’s an especially good resource for those new to this path.