This book is pretty well written, and a good read all in all. I think what it boils down to is whether Cochrane's style of witchcrft and his rituals are really your style. Personally, I do not believe they are my style, but I feel like I understand witchcraft better, though it gets a bit dry in some places. When Doreen had her temporary break with Gardnerianism, this is the craft she practiced. I believe that Cochrane's rituals represent a simpler or almost more simplistic and primal type of witchcraft than the more ceremonialist approach of Gerald Gardner, and yet if I had to choose between Gardner's style and Cochrane's, I would personally prefer Gardner's. There is a very stark contrast between the two methods, and I believe this is part of the reason the two men disagreed so much on what witchcraft really is. I do not believe that one way or the other was the "right" way or the "only" way. I still think that Cochrane did us a great service by preserving some of the lore in the ways he did, and I think he probably was inspired by authentic traditional sources. In the British Isles there must be several different *kinds* of traditional witchcraft, which may be extremely different from one another. While Cochrane's rituals seem to have a certain celticization to them, which might not be so be authentic, Gardner's style occasionally resembles something continental rather than Anglo-Saxon. I believe that research will show, however, that both ways have authentic roots, and that there is room enough in the world for both ways of doing things.
Lots of garbage masquerades as "traditional" witchcraft. Much of the quality material can be traced back to Gardnerian roots. This book is a rare gem--a reliable and modern source for non-Gardnerian British Craft material. Doreen Valiente, an important figure in Wicca, wrote with Evan Jones about the practice of the Craft after Robert Cochrane's style.
While this book does not hold many "spell recipes" or "ritual scripts," it provides enough information to "produce" rituals in this style & to organize a coven. This begs the question, however, of whether or not the Craft may be handed down through books or not.
The Goddess knows Her own, and to Herself She will call them. Within these pages lie material that may be of great use to those so called. Five stars for laying out a tradition rarely written about and making it available to those called to "tradition," but not to the "Gardnerian" way of doing things.