According to the back cover, Priestess Brandi Auset's The Goddess Guide is “the most complete cross-reference ever for the universal worship of the Divine Feminine.” That, gentle readers, is a pretty bold claim. What we get for our $16.95 is a small list of encylopedia entries with about three times as many pages of indexes.
Including the introduction and index the book is three hundred and twenty-three pages long. Eighteen of those pages are the introduction, and approximately eighty pages are three to seven sentence long entries describing over four hundred different goddess from around the world. The rest of the two hundred plus pages are double columns organizing the various goddesses by their correspondences: Names, Attributes, Colors, Elements, Sabbats, Regions, and Feminine Aspects (Maiden, Mother, and Crone). Those two hundred pages are predominantly white space. Its organization leaves something to be desired, as looking up a specific goddess does not tell you her correspondences without cross-referencing her name in an index on the page and then looking up the page numbers on that index to find the lists she is included on and, finally, her correspondences. I am confused about the decision to not include the correspondences in the goddesses' individual entries as it would vastly improve the book's usability.
In the introduction the author states that the purpose of the book is to help you determine the name of a goddess when you only know a few correspondences, perhaps from a session of meditation or a flash of insight. Alternatively, the book can be used to choose a goddess who can aid you in a particular task: look up Love goddesses for a love spell, for instance. It performs well in the second function, though the amount of cross-referencing necessary due to the different lists mentioned above can make it tedious. For the first function I performed an experiment to test usability by asking members of paganspace.net to provide me with descriptions of obscure goddesses. I tried using the book to locate the goddesses, then attempted to find them using google. My modest google skills enabled me to find the goddesses in question in less than a minute, while searching through the tables in The Goddess Guide could take upwards of ten or twenty minutes. Incidentally, the websites pulled up by google provided far more information. Occasionally I found the wrong goddess in my search, but in every case where I located the wrong one the book and google both gave the same incorrect answer. I would, of course, encourage anyone to take any information they get from a random webpage with a grain of salt.
The ultimate question is this: Do I think The Goddess Guide is worth your money? No. Sadly not. The information contained in it can lead to discovery of a new goddess but the book is simply not comprehensive or well-organized enough for me to recommend it.
Rating: 2 out of 5 stars