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This is the Blog for Melusine Draco, esoteric author (fact and fiction) and spiritual teacher; dog person and countrywoman; writer and creative writing tutor.  Hopefully, it will make life a lot easier in keeping in touch on social media about work in progress, new titles and books off the back-list.  These are my mountains, my streams and this is my glen … Welsh photographs by Polly Langford

“Mélusine Draco, as her name suggests, has long been plugged into the powerful currents of traditional witchcraft and ritual magic. She is one of the real ones. Her provocative series of Tradition Witchcraft will show you how to move between the inner and outer worlds. Follow along behind her if you dare …” Alan Richardson, author of numerous esoteric titles including Priestess and The Old Sod, biographies of Dion Fortune and W G Gray.

Contact: melusinedraco777@gmail.com

WRITER@WORK

That’s nearly a month down the line and we’re still under ‘house arrest’ although the time has not been idly spent.  Have deliberately kept away from social media as I find it all too depressing!   It has, however, given me the opportunity to create a new IgnotusBooksUK.com blog site (https://ignotusbooksuk.wordpress.com/blog/) to showcase all the books currently in publication under this banner – non-fiction and fiction.  We are slowly adding new authors to our ranks, who have proven antecedents and who have no hesitation in disclosing their Craft background.

From 1997 until 2007 Ignotus held the reputation of being one of the most innovative and imaginative presses of the time in the mind, body and spirit genre.  This was because we only invited submissions direct from authors (including first time authors) and our emphasis was on the practical aspects of magic and spiritual techniques rather than self-help material.  We also upheld the policy that all those authors be established members of the Path or Tradition they were writing about and had genuine antecedents.  And we did check!  This was so we could guarantee that our readers only purchased books by bone fide magical practitioners with a proven track record.  Little has changed – although nowadays the reading public appears not to concern itself with such things – but we still consider it an important facet of Ignotus Books.

Similarly, it has been decided that the latest title, Round About the Cauldron Go … will only be available as a limited edition publication, since this is a rare publication indeed.  It is a  collaboration between several Coven of the Scales Initiates who all conform to the above criteria.  The title is on its final read-through and getting five highly experienced witches to agree on a given subject has been an achievement in itself!  Discussions have grown out of discussions and ultimately the book will give a fascinating glimpse into the hidden world of traditional British Old Craft and its sabbatic origins.

The compilation of The Witch’s Book of Simples is also growing apace and this is another rarity, inasmuch that ‘Simples’ have long been an integral part of the old folk-medicine of witches, wise-women and cunning folk. A Simple was a plant grown on its own as a medicine – Simple being a term from the melding of two Latin words, Singula plica: a single purpose. This was the most elementary way to use medicinal plants since no fancy recipes or scientific acumen was needed as Simples were often given as an infusion or used as a poultice or compress.  But this element of traditional witchcraft has long been in the shadows …

The next book to be published is The (Inner-City) Path: A Gleaning of the Seasons that was inspired by Chet Raymo’s book of similar title – that chronicled his own daily walk to work and observing the seasonal changes with a scientist’s curiosity. As often happens, I began thinking ‘what if’ there was a complementary book written from a pagan perspective for when we take to our local paths for our daily dog walk. And, as if arising from this external creative impulse The Path began to unravel in the mind’s eye … based on several familiar walks that have merged together over the years to make a chapbook of the seasons and to offer a glimpse into the pagan mind-set that can find mystery under every leaf and rock along the way, or caught in the murmur of running water, and to act as a simple guide to achieving a sense of well-being and awareness. Due 25th September 2020 from Moon Books.

And last but not least I’m half way through the fifth in The Hugo Braithwaite Mysteries – Screenplay – which has the glamour and romance of vintage Hollywood memorabilia.  But, of course, Hugo can’t stay away from trouble and this time it nearly gets Danny killed!

WRITER@WORK

Having got to 5th May and found that house arrest is to continue for another two weeks at least, it’s time to re-evaluate the situation.  Having several acres of fields in which to exercise and not driving, the current mini- lifting of the restrictions aren’t going to make any difference.   Luckily, I’ve got two treasures who are looking after me but the thing I miss is not being able to go into a store for a rummage around and thinking ‘Ah! I’ll have that for supper for a change!’   Or shopping for seasonal vegetables before my own are ready in the garden.  Or bandying insults with the local traders as part of the weekly routine.  And if that’s all I have to complain about, then I’m fortunate indeed.

On the plus side, of course, I’m still cracking on with the writing projects: the latest Hugo Braithwaite  mystery, Screenplay, is half-way complete and The Witch’s Book of Simples is well underway.   Both books will be published by Ignotus Books UK early next year.  Keep up to date with these publications on the MD Blog – https://wordpress.com/home/melusine-draco.blog  We’ve also formally inaugurated the Ignotus Books UK web site and this is now under way with all ignotus books in print listed and direct links to FeedARead for special discounts and a Blog page attached.  Watch this space …

As 21st March 2021is the publication date for Sexual Dynamics in the Circle it means that my next Moon Books title will not be due until 2022 – but I won’t be keeping any finished titles hanging around waiting!    I might get Appeasing the Gods – with Sacrifice, Offerings & Libation in the pipeline and ready for submission for mid 2021.  If they want it – fine – if not …………..!

Today there are many more easily available books on occult subjects than there was in the 1990s, but quantity hasn’t necessarily translated into quality. Our aim for Ignotus Books is to provide titles that will provide authentic, reliable information and guidance to the genuine seeker, written by seasoned practitioners with proven antecedents.  And, as in the past, our authors are willing to answer any questions arising from the content of their publications.

We are also hoping to launch an Arcanum series of introductory titles based on the principle of the children’s ‘Ladybird’ books that introduced us to the nuggets of wisdom that often lasted a life-time. This new series has been specially structured to help genuine magical practitioners make an exploratory journey into areas that may be unfamiliar to them before investing in larger more costly books. The first Arcanum titles in preparation are Thoth: The Gateway to the Temple by Melusine Draco and Colour in the Circle (working title) by Julie Dexter.

Ignotus Books: fiction

Whittlewood (novel) – Suzanne Ruthven

A modern Gothic horror story of ancient and modern magical morality and witchcraft … In the old Whittlewood forest a murder awakens an ancient power – and the penalty is death.  The author spent her childhood in Whittlewood Forest, a former medieval hunting forest in Northamptonshire.  There are tracts of ancient woodland within the forest, and old ditch boundaries can be found at the edges of several of the individual woods. The area has been the subject of extensive academic historical research … and it has always retained its element of mystery.

Reviews:

Whittlewood deserves to be widely read by those who want a book full of atmosphere and an underlying sense of powerful other-worldly forces at work. The setting is vivid and the characters and their motives well drawn. Would make an excellent film/TV drama, and I look forward to reading more fiction by Ms Ruthven.” Sally Spedding, author of Cold Remains, Wringland and Cloven.

5-star rating from Amazon: “This book is a real page-turner. I started reading it and had to finish it in one sitting; I just could not put it down. Whittlewood is a tale of murder and magical mystery, with some romance and a few touches of history, all of which combine to entice the reader to keep reading and reading – ever hungry for more … Suzanne Ruthven has woven a story of magic, mystery and reality into a marvellous book. I hope she continues to write such engrossing tales. What’s more her descriptive style is such that I could smell the incense and greenery in the Church; I was transported. This is one of the most original fictional works I have read in recent years.”

ISBN: 9781786976888 : Paperback : Pages 248 : €7.95

Published: 1 March 2017

Order direct from https://www.feedaread.com/books/Whittlewood-9781786976888.aspx

Also available in Kindle e-book format

 

 

Ignotus – Book news …

Coven of the Scales: The Collected Writings of A R Clay Egerton
As one of our members said: ‘It was the first book I read that made me think, this is how it’s actually done …’  It was the first book published by the original ignotus press in 2002 and the first reprint title by Ignotus Books in 2016.
Since his death in 1998, the reputation of Alastair ‘Bob’ Clay-Egerton has begun to pass into pagan legend alongside other contemporary characters such as Robert Cochrane, Michael Howard and Bill Grey. Hopefully, these collected writings will strike a responsive cord and cause the reader to think for themselves, instead of being influenced by the large amount of misinformation that is prevalent in today’s occult teaching. His unique form of teaching is continued in the work of the Coven of the Scales.
It is probably easier to say what Bob Clay-Egerton wasn’t than what he was and, despite having been an acquaintance of Gerald Gardener and chums with Alex Sanders, he embraced neither Gardnerian nor Alexandrian traditions.  He was initiated into Old Craft back in 1941 and into a ritual magic order in 1943 but, contrary to popular belief, he neither knew Aleister Crowley, nor was he a member of either the Golden Dawn or the OTO.  He was a member of the Templi Satanas Luciferi which, in modern parlance was a forerunner of the Tubal Cain-Luciferian tradition that was then gaining popularity.
ISBN: 9781786109620 : Paperback : Pages 140 : €6.85
Published: 12 May 2016
Order direct from
https://www.feedaread.com/books/Coven-of-the-Scales.aspx
Also available in Kindle e-book format

 

Ignotus Books … fiction

The Temple House Archive series – Melusine Draco

The Temple House was founded in 1586 in England during the reign of Elizabeth I as an off-shoot of Sir Francis Walsingham’s recently created intelligence service, inaugurated to investigate the growing popularity of esoteric learning that was occupying the interests of the Elizabethan intelligentsia. For this he recruited the descendants of the Knights Templar who had remained in England following the destruction of their Order. Drawing on a veritable mine of esoteric knowledge and experience of international intrigue, the Temple House was established to combat ‘evil forces’ of a human or supernatural agency, and those who would use occult power for destructive purposes. The current members of the Temple House, or ‘the Nine’ as they are called in memory of the nine founder members of the original Knights Templar, are all specialists and magical practitioners in the diverse fields of occultism and its relevant histories.

For more details see http://www.facebook.com/TempleHouseArchive

 Reviews:

“A brilliant read. Love the writing. A real chiller-thriller. The author has all the skills needed to write a cracking good novel. She also has a vast occult knowledge that really shows and writes on the subject with ease. As usual with Melusine there is a subtle humorous element running through that works really well. Best of all there is a volume two underway. I think this would make a great TV series.” Maria Moloney, Axis Mundi Books

“A cracking read. An excellent story, the characters are three dimensional, the dialogue reads naturally and the pacing is fine. There is tension and plenty of conflict as well as some nice touches of humour. There is also a sense of truth that only someone who is familiar with the occult can provide in this genre.” Krystina Kellingley, Cosmic Egg Books

“A brilliant read and a walk into the world of the occult that is both fascinating and thrilling. Loved the historical undertones and the work of the ‘Nine’. Kept me gripped throughout. Can’t wait for number two!” Sarah-Beth Watkins : Bookworms

 

House of Strange Gods

When journalist Michael Gilmour discovered a small filler in a tabloid newspaper about the ‘witch busters’ of Temple House, he believed they were the right people to help him discover the reason behind his father’s disappearance back in the 1970s following an investigation into the desecration of a rural church. What he discovered was even stranger than anything he could ever have imagined in his wildest flights of imagination, which almost results in his own death in an act of premature burial from which he is rescued in the nick of time.

ISBN: 9781785106392 : Paperback : Pages 296 : €8.95

Also available in Kindle e-books.

Published: 26 February 2016

Order direct from: https://www.feedaread.com/books/House-of-Strange-Gods-9781785106392.aspx

 

Realm of Shadow

Led by charismatic Professors Aliona de Foresta and Robert Sands, the members of the Temple House embark on another series of paranormal investigations sparked off when a reality television presenter defiles the burial site of a Viking warrior – with deadly results.

ISBN: 9781786103628 : Paperback : Pages 282 : €8.95

Also available in Kindle e-books

Published: 26 May 2016

Order direct from https://www.feedaread.com/books/REALM-OF-SHADOW-9781786103628.aspx

 

Hour Betwixt Dog & Wolf

The ‘Hour Betwixt Dog and Wolf’ is taken from a French saying L’heure entre chien et loup and refers to the moments after sunset when the sky darkens and vision becomes unclear, making it difficult to distinguish between dogs and wolves, friends and foe, good from evil. When confronted by what appears to be creatures from the ancient race of dog-headed men, the Cynocephali, the Temple House embarks on one of its strangest cases to date.

ISBN: 9781786979063 : Paperback : Pages 256 : €8.95

Also available in Kindle e-books

Published: 27 July 2017

Order direct from https://www.feedaread.com/books/Hour-Betwixt-Dog-Wolf-9781786979063.aspx

 

The Thirteenth Sign

Theatre des Vampires without the cast,” said Jack glumly, referring to the fictitious location in the Boulevard du Temple of Vampire Chronicles fame. “Where’s the spine-tingling depravity of our home from home?” he added, raising his voice theatrically trying to instil a sense of horror into the proceedings.

“For the benefit of the uninitiated” said Chrissie, “the Boulevard du Temple, as its name suggests, refers to the nearby Knights Templar’s stronghold where they established their Paris priory. After a time, it was nicknamed the ‘Boulevard du Crime’ after the crime melodramas that were so popular in its many theatres …” she added sarcastically.

“So, where’s the violence, the murder and the suicide that’s dogged the family down through the ages. I want bodies hurtling from the roof … insanity …” Jack disclaimed dramatically like some old Shakespearean ham.

ISBN: 9781788766395 : Paperback : Pages 252 : €8.95

Also available in Kindle e-books

Published: 7 December 2018

Order direct from https://www.feedaread.com/books/The-Thirteenth-Sign-9781788766395.aspx

 

Ignotus is back …

Coven of the Scales: The Collected Writings of A R Clay Egerton

As one of our members said: ‘It was the first book I read that made me think, this is how it’s actually done …’  It was the first book published by the original ignotus press in 2002 and the first reprint title by Ignotus Books in 2016.

Since his death in 1998, the reputation of Alastair ‘Bob’ Clay-Egerton has begun to pass into pagan legend alongside other contemporary characters such as Robert Cochrane, Michael Howard and Bill Grey. Hopefully, these collected writings will strike a responsive cord and cause the reader to think for themselves, instead of being influenced by the large amount of misinformation that is prevalent in today’s occult teaching. His unique form of teaching is continued in the work of the Coven of the Scales.

It is probably easier to say what Bob Clay-Egerton wasn’t than what he was and, despite having been an acquaintance of Gerald Gardener and chums with Alex Sanders, he embraced neither Gardnerian nor Alexandrian traditions.  He was initiated into Old Craft back in 1941 and into a ritual magic order in 1943 but, contrary to popular belief, he neither knew Aleister Crowley, nor was he a member of either the Golden Dawn or the OTO.  He was a member of the Templi Satanas Luciferi which, in modern parlance was a forerunner of the Tubal Cain-Luciferian tradition that was then gaining popularity.

ISBN: 9781786109620 : Paperback : Pages 140 : €6.85

Published: 12 May 2016

Order direct from https://www.feedaread.com/books/Coven-of-the-Scales.aspx

Also available in Kindle e-book format