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Book Review – Spells for Change: A Guide for Modern Witches by Frankie Castanea

Book Review

Spells for Change: A Guide for Modern Witches

Written by Frankie Castanea

Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing

208 Pages

Release Date: April 22, 2023





Frankie Castanea called Spells for Change: A Guide for Modern Witches the book she wish she had at sixteen when she began her on her path. It provides the basic foundations beginners need for understanding the history, elements, tools, crystals, herbs, and spell crafting. Castanea, a practicing eclectic/folk witch, found herself answering all the questions she’s received as a mentor while building her audience on social media platforms. The information is purposefully devoid of any particular path or religion, focusing instead on reclaiming power, coming to better understand yourself, and practicing activism.

It guides modern witches through a rebirth of the Craft with meditation, casting circles, cleansing, protection, manifestation, binding, and banishing – old pagan traditions with personal and global applications. Readers are introduced to energy work, tools, herbs, trees, crystals, sigils, divination methods, casting a circle, and correspondences.

It’s a great starting point for newbies and those exploring new areas of the Craft. It’s well-written, comprehensive, and something I will be recommending to others.

Experienced witches will also find topics of interest in this book. I liked the sections on prioritizing the self, activism (because witchcraft is political), shadow work (because there is always more to do), domination magick, cultural appropriation, and decolonization of the Craft. I collected some useful ideas from the author’s personal practices, too. For instance, I liked her binding method better than the one I use and will come to think of magick as defensive and offensive rather than good or bad, or black or white.

At the time of this writing, ninety percent of 330 Amazon ratings were a five, with 4.9 being the average score. In the comments, it was mentioned she mistakenly puts air in the south and fire in the east. I call the same seven directions she does (north, east, south, west, above, below, and center) plus I call without, or the spirit of place and those around me. Researching the Compass Round, as she called it, I found sources that had also had fire in the east, but then put earth in the south, water in the west, and air in the north. I also know a witch who calls the directions literally as they relate to the orientation of the elements around her home. For instance, the Atlantic Ocean is to her east, so that’s where she puts water, and the entire content is to her west, so that’s where she places earth.

About the Author:

Frankie Anne Castanea has been a practicing neopagan and eclectic folk witch for seven years. She is more commonly known as “Chaotic Witch Aunt” on the internet, where she runs a tarot reading business and hosts classes on divination, protection, and deity work. This is her debut book.


Spells for Change on Amazon



About the Author:

Lynn Woike

All my life I have known magic was real. As a child, I played with the fae, established relationships with trees and “just knew things.” In my maiden years I discovered witchcraft and dabbled in the black-candles-and-cemeteries-at-midnight-on-a-fullmoon magick just enough to realize I did not understand its power. I went on to explore many practices including Zen, astrology, color therapy, native traditions, tarot, herbs, candle magic, gems, and, as I moved into my mother years, Buddhism, the Kabbalah and Reiki. The first man I dated after my divorce was a witch who reintroduced me to the Craft, this time by way of the Goddess. For 11 years I was in a coven, but with retirement, I have returned to an eclectic solitary practice.


When accepting the mantle of crone, I pledged to serve and teach. This is what I do from my skoolie – a 30-year-old school bus converted into a tiny house on wheels that I am driving around the country, following 72-degree weather, emerging myself into nature, and sharing magic with those I meet. Find me at, Facebook and Instagram.